F1's new teams are embarassingly slow. What to do?

Virgin, Lotus and Hispania are nor only always the slowest, they are so much slower than the next slowest it’s simply not a matter of tweaking the suspension or a new aerodynamic package. They even have decent drivers. Lotus (Trulli and Kovalainen) and Virgin (Glock).
In Bahrain the “fastest” new car war 2.7 secs slower than the slowest “old” one in qualifying.
In Australia 2.3
Malaysia was “different”.
China 2.1
Spain 1.6.
You could say they are improving, but still.
Can something be done to improve this?

Seems like they should try making faster cars, no?

It’s been a while since I’ve payed much attention to F1 - what’s the holdup for the newcomers? Budget?

That’d be a start.:smiley:
I’d say not enough testing.

With all the variables (engine tuning, suspension set up, aerodynamics, driver preferences, etc…) involved in setting up an F1 cars, I think it would be reasonable to expect that at least a majority of their first year would be spent getting the new teams up to par with the established teams. If by the end of the season or after the first few races of next season these teams are still way behind the rest of the field, then maybe I would start to worry.

I still think the drivers should get their cars py plucking straws or playing Paper, Rocks, Scissors Round-Robins.

Just a suggestion!

Yes. But the only way for anyone to make a firm guess is the same way the team is going to approach it: testing and experimenting.

2 seconds is an enormous amount of time and money. That’s several million dollars per second and the time to test/tweak/modify is probably in the range of over 1,000 hours.

Is it worse than the days of Forti, Minardi, and Arrows?

Part of the problem is that the FIA has severely restricted test sessions in an effort to control costs. In-season testing is banned, and teams were limited to just a handful of test sessions during the preseason. Established teams that have a database of knowledge and experience to draw upon were hurt less than the new teams. The Friday practice session before each race is the only time the new teams have a chance to develop anything and forces them to use this for testing, while the established teams are working on race setups.

A solution would be to allow the rookie teams some additional test days during the season, to give them an opportunity to at least get their acts together. We haven’t even had a race yet this year where all the cars started from the grid. Every race has had at least one of the new cars starting from pit lane, if not a DNS altogether, because of some technical problem.

Allow more testing by slower teams. A few years ago the weaker teams were allowed to test a third car in Friday practice.

It also takes several years for even a well run new team to become competitive (Stewart Racing in the 1990s).

I also think when the newest teams applied, they thought the FIA would have really strong budget caps on the established teams.

Historically new teams have come and gone in F1 for decades.