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DATE News (chronologically)
06/05/09
f1
Latest F1 news in Brief
  • Button not ready to consider 2010 contract
  • New Turkey GP deal 'won't be easy' - chief
  • News briefs from Turkey
  • Vettel, Alonso, skeptical about 'new' F1
  • F1 teams expecting Mosley letter on Friday
  • Mercedes shedding 50 F1 engine jobs

Button not ready to consider 2010 contract
(GMM)  Jenson Button in Turkey refused to admit he is already thinking about improving the terms of his current contract.

The British driver agreed to slash his retainer for 2009, negotiated by Honda before the Japanese giant pulled out of formula one, as new owners Brawn finalized its management buyout.

But with the 29-year-old now dominating the world championship, team CEO Nick Fry insisted two weeks ago in Monaco that he aims to nail down a long-term agreement with Button, complete with a substantial pay-rise.

Button said at Istanbul: "I don't want to talk about anything that is irrelevant at the moment.  I am very happy, all I think about is racing."

He admits he read about Fry's comments after winning in Monaco, but has made no moves to take up Fry's invitation for negotiations.

"I haven't spoken to anyone in the team about it because I'm not interested," added Button.

"I'm here to race.  I don't want to talk about money.  I continued with this team because I thought the car would be competitive, and that's my only interest at the moment."

New Turkey GP deal 'won't be easy' - chief
(GMM)  The boss of Turkey's motor racing sanctioning body admits Istanbul Park may struggle to reach an agreement to keep formula one at the circuit beyond 2011.

It is already known that Bernie Ecclestone, who rents the track from the Istanbul chamber of commerce, has given notice that the agreement is to be reconsidered beyond the 2011 edition.

"It won't be easy to come to an agreement," said the federation chief Mumtaz Tahincioglu.  "There's tough competition, like when we started."

He explained that the only hope for Turkish grands prix beyond 2011 is to agree new terms with F1 chief executive Ecclestone, who is courting "serious candidates" for alternative venues.

"Some of them (the candidates) have committed to expensive construction," Tahincioglu is quoted as saying by the local Zaman newspaper.

News briefs from Turkey
(GMM)  New team owners Brawn GP are to auction some of the Brackley based outfit's old BAR and Honda (2001-2006) formula one rolling chassis.  The auction will be conducted by Bonhams at the Silverstone Classic Historic Race Meeting on 25 July.

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Germany's Bild newspaper reports that Jenson Button has placed a 50,000 euro bet on himself winning the 2009 world championship.

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Red Bull had journalists scratching their heads in Turkey, when the 'Energy Station' motor home had a distinctly different feel about it in the paddock of the Istanbul Park circuit.  It turns out that the regular structure, modified to float in the Monaco harbor two weeks ago, could not be dismantled in time, so Red Bull is instead using the unit usually reserved for truck racing.

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If granted a 2010 entry, it has emerged that Franz Hilmer's plan is to establish his new Brabham team in the same Leafield facility used in the past by Super Aguri and Arrows.  Super Aguri's former technical director Mark Preston would also be involved in the project.

Vettel, Alonso, skeptical about 'new' F1
(GMM)  Sebastian Vettel has expressed skepticism about some of the names that are bidding to set up formula one teams for 2010.

So many entries for next year's budget-capped championship have been lodged that, theoretically, the grid would be more than full even if the rebel FOTA teams do not sign up.

But German Vettel, who drives for Red Bull Racing, warned observers to wait until it becomes truly clear which teams will be occupying the Melbourne garages next March.

"Perhaps it's best to wait," the 21-year-old is quoted as saying in Istanbul by Speedweek.

"And with regards to all these new teams, perhaps everything will not be the same when it comes the time to put the money on the table," added Vettel.

2005 and 2006 world champion Fernando Alonso made clear he is backing the preservation of today's teams.

"With this revolution it seems like almost anyone can have a formula one team," the Renault driver told Spanish media in Turkey, "and I think that's a big mistake for the sport."

When asked about Max Mosley's warning to rebel teams that they should flee to a breakaway series if they want to write their own rules, Alonso answered: "Hopefully it happens."

Two of the potential new teams, Campos and Epsilon Euskadi, are Spanish.  "It would be a dream if there was a Spanish team," Alonso insisted, "but not if at the same time formula one becomes a sort of 'big GP2'."

F1 teams expecting Mosley letter on Friday
(GMM)  FOTA-member formula one teams are said to be expecting a letter written and signed by Max Mosley on Friday.

The grand prix circus is this weekend gathered at Istanbul, just days after the FIA president was quoted as warning FOTA to set up their own championship if they are not prepared to accept the 2010 rules.

BMW's Mario Theissen steered away from the 'breakaway' speculation when addressing the media in Turkey, but Toyota president John Howett - vice chairman of the F1 teams' group FOTA - admitted on Friday that a rival series is one possibility.

"We are not looking for confrontation but we need a broad option plan and looking at alternative series has to be one," he is quoted as saying by the BBC.

A week ago today, the nine FOTA teams lodged a block conditional entry for the 2010 world championship, demanding the announced rules be wound back and replaced with their proposals.

"We are waiting to hear back from the FIA," Theissen said on Thursday, "and only then can we sit down together and decide what to do."

Mercedes shedding 50 F1 engine jobs
(GMM)  Ten per cent of the workforce of the company that builds Mercedes-Benz's formula one engines is to be laid off.

Mercedes-Benz High Performance Engines, located in Brixworth (UK), confirmed to the local Northampton Chronicle that "approximately 50" jobs are being shed.

The engines power the grand prix cars of works team McLaren, as well as customers Brawn GP and Force India.

German marque Mercedes' motor sport spokesman Wolfgang Schattling said the decision is due to the sport's current rules limiting engine life and development.

"It is an unfortunate consequence," he said.  "Nonetheless, we will continue to manufacture high class engines such as those with which we are leading the championship."

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