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RE: Audi withdraws from British Touring Car Championship

well, i think he's being a little selective as well.  but his point is that
fully-fledged manufacturer involvement in formula 1 is only 4 with fiat
(ferrari, sauber), daimler-benz-chrysler (mclaren), ford (stewart), and
peugeot (prost), and residual manufacturer involvement scheduled to ramp up
with honda (jordan), renault (benneton, bar), and bmw (williams).  so, even
in the y2k full manufacturer involvement will only be fiat (ferrari), d-b
(mclaren), bmw (williams), honda (honda, jordan), toyota (?), renault
(bar-arrows, benneton?) and ford (steward, benneton?). even then, just the
same (7) as the btcc.  

the focus in f1 is on what will happen to the smaller teams (twr-arrows,
minardi, sauber).  anyway you look at it, the team owners are sitting on a
very valuable commodity, and can name their price to a big manufacturer
wanting the ultimate exposure (vw and gm will be the only top manufacturers
not represented in f1).

however, the number of participants in formula 1 is limited to 12.  with
honda being admitted for the y2k, and toyota hoping for the year after, the
options for audi are severely limited.  remember that all of the other teams
have got to *agree* to admit another player as well.  the only option
available to audi (and toyota) is to buy an existing team.  options with
reasonable possibilities would be twr-arrows and benneton...

at this point, audi is denying any intention of f1 involvement, and is
focussed on the le mans effort.  as a sign of their seriousness, they have
also decided *not* to go to le mans with an existing audi-sport team (the
uk-team had been touted, but are now talking to honda about next years
btcc), but are recruiting an existing le mans team for the effort.  joest
has admitted discussions with audi (ullrich), but the best guess is that
audi will go with another le mans team.

the other thing to remember is that imho, rally sport is now about to enter
another golden age (the 1st since the group b age, so memorable for audi
fans).  there has never been more fully-fledged manufacturers involved in
the wrc category (ie non-f2) with the number rising next year to 8!  vw will
next year have 2(!) teams (skoda and seat) with full-house wrc cars (turbo,
awd).  with peugeot and hyundai moving up to wrc from formula 2, ford
fielding a new car, toyota, mitsbushi, and subaru continuing with wrc, it's
going to be a very interesting year....

'95 rs2
'90 ur-q

On Wednesday, October 14, 1998 8:46 AM, Ian J Haseltine
[SMTP:jim_haseltine@email.msn.com] wrote:
> -----Original Message-----
> From: Eaton Dave <dave.eaton@minedu.govt.nz>
> >Series boss Alan Gow, head of
> >organisers TOCA, had earlier refuted suggestions that the
> >BTCC was in decline. "We still have more manufacturers than
> >Formula One and I don't hear that being written off.
> I might be wrong here, but as far as I can remember, F1 has 11
> and now that the BTCC has lost Audi & Peugeot and with BMW long gone,
> they have
> Volvo
> Ford
> Nissan
> Vauxhall
> Renault
> Alfa Romeo (maybe)
> Honda
> unless I've missed any thats 7.
> 7 > 11? Thats some wierd math....