Welcome to Day 2 of the F1 Advent Calendar 2010, brought to you by Sidepodcast. We're counting down to that festive day with a review of the season just gone, and each day there's another key moment of the year to be examined. Today - US not so F1.
The one thing US F1 can't complain about is not having enough time to find out just how tough F1 really is. The idea of a team fronted by Peter Windsor of Speed TV and former-NASCAR team technical director, Ken Anderson was first introduced in February 2009. Their F1 entry was granted in June the same year, and after that, we heard very little of forward development, except seeing a less-than-exciting tour of the factory, with a couple of interviews with staff.
Come January, even Bernie Ecclestone had expressed doubts that the team were going to be ready to go when the season began. Peter Windsor appeared to be spending his days concerned with the summer shutdown - complaining that in the US, there was no such thing as a factory shutdown, and he would rather keep on working through. Meanwhile, the rest of us were pondering whether he would make Bahrain, let alone the August break.
Towards the end of the first month of the year, the signs were looking slightly better, as the team announced one of their drivers in the shape of José María López from Argentina. There was still no sign of what he would be driving though.
The team were counting on backing from YouTube boss Chad Hurley, but in February 2010, rumours sprang up that he had pulled out of the operation. With financial worries on their minds, Peter Windsor put in a request to the FIA that they be allowed to miss the first four races of the season, making their debut at the Spanish Grand Prix. The FIA quite rightly said no. The next attempt was to ask the FIA to postpone their entry until 2011, but the FIA simply said the entry procedure for the next season would re-open in the normal fashion.
At the beginning of March, it was revealed that Peter Windsor and Ken Anderson had relieved all the staff of their duties, via email, and that the team had officially shut down operations, and by the beginning of April, it was confirmed the team had folded completely. The FIA launched an investigation into the team's downfall, and fined them just over 300,000 Euros, additionally banning them from participating in any FIA sanctioned championships. They were the epitome of bringing the sport into disrepute.
That's all for this episode of the F1 Advent Calendar 2010. We are two days in and have plenty more to come, so I hope you will join me tomorrow when we take a look at another key event of the year in Day 3.
All content in the series F1 Advent Calendar 2010
Filed under Mini Series
References Bernie Ecclestone
Previous post On track with Steven Roy
Next post Thursday Thoughts - Are the new teams welcome?
365 F1 stories