Sidepodcast - All for F1 and F1 for all

Heartland - Formula 1 returns to it's natural home

Published by Mr. C

Toyota's F1 motorhome

This weekend Formula 1 returns to it's natural home, the heartland of Europe (or as Bernie prefers to call it the new 3rd world). This can mean only one thing - F1 teams punting their Motorhome Excess.

A private war is waged each year, in parallel with the world championship. The battle of corporate hospitality. In this war, teams fight it out to see who can build the most extravagant declaration of public decadence. This year, Ferrari claim first blood, arriving as they have with a brand new 47 tonne Tower of Babel.

Teams will publicly claim that such installations are required to provide housing for media sessions as well as all manner of technical paraphernalia. But that's nonsense, it's much easier to run a communications center from a permanently fitted truck than it is to continually move equipment to and from these temporary enclosures.

No. Motorhomes are designed and built to keep multi-million pound corporate sponsors happy, nothing more. After all, if your company is spending tens of millions on F1 sponsorship, you're going to want to feel a bit more special than the average Joe in the grandstand right? And what better way to make such a statement that standing atop an ivory tower?

Brad Spurgeon calls it right when he says of the Ferrari castle:

When I asked if I could visit the upper floors, I was told that was for Philip Morris only. And that gave me an idea of where the money for the skyscraper might have come from, although I did not bother asking.

- Brad Spurgeon

In which case, do you think they have a custom chimney fitted to the roof?

Happily, given the way this years calendar has panned out, the motorhome's will only make a fleeting appearance. We're heading to the ultra cramped paddock of Monaco in a fortnight's time, before heading across the Atlantic for a further two flyaway races. That means the next time you see these temporary structures will be at the French GP at the end of June.

Marvel at the excess while you can.