Tag Archives: Briatore

Motorsports Mondial


Renault F1 confident that they can overtake Mercedes GP.

“I think we can because at the moment they’re only just ahead of us on qualifying pace, whereas we seemed to have the edge on race pace in Malaysia,” said Allison on Monday.

We will have more updates in China, including a new floor and an alternative front wing.

Although this might not be enough to get ahead of Mercedes in qualifying trim, it should move us closer to their tail. And if we can jump ahead of them at the start of a race, I’m confident we have the pace to stay ahead.”

Flavio Briatore and Pat Symonds will be allowed to work in Formula 1 at the start of 2013 season.

Briatore and Symonds have expressed regret and apologised for their actions.

“In return, they have asked the FIA to abandon the ongoing appeal procedure, but without the FIA recognising the validity of the criticisms levelled against the WMSC’s decision of 21 September 2009, as well as to waive the right to bring any new proceedings against them on the subject of this affair.”

The FIA: “Considering that the judgment of 5 January 2010 concerned only the form and not the substance of the WMSC’s decision of 21 September 2009, and that the undertakings and renunciation of all claims expressed by Mr Flavio Briatore and Mr Pat Symonds are in line with what the WMSC is seeking, the FIA President has considered that it is in the best interests of the FIA not to allow the perpetuation of these legal disputes, which have received a great deal of media coverage and which, regardless of the outcome, are very prejudicial to the image of the FIA and of motor sport, and thus to accept this settlement solution, thereby putting an end to this affair.”





The 2009 Formula 1 season is gone but the 2010 Classic Grand Prix calendar has arrived. Celebrate the New Year with “La Dolce Vita”—featuring the red blood of Italy and the legendary men who raced them.

Mike Hawthorn, the first British world champion.

Alberto Ascari, the last Italian world champion. Jacky Ickx, the Belgian boy wonder. “Our Nige” plus Alain Prost and Kimi Raikkonen. And the “Red Baron” on his way to his first F1 victory for Maranello.

Calendar features an exclusive interview with Mario Andretti.

Please visit our merchandise page for immediate shipment.

The Paris court will today hear Flavio Briatore’s appeal against his lifetime motorsport ban.

Campos Meta 1’s car for its debut Formula 1 season has been homologated by the FIA.

Paul di Resta and JR Hildebrand will drive for Force India in the young driver test at Jerez.

F1weekly podcast # 374


Fisico to Ferrari

Giancarlo Fisichella will be the second Ferrari driver from the Italian Grand Prix.

‘This crash was not right, it happened because you wanted it to’. Massa to Flavio.

Renault could face serious charges with the risk of expulsion from Formula One.

F1weekly podcast number 374 now online.

Go around the Globe with Motorsports Mondial and Nasir Hameed.


Flavio Briatore was born in Verzuolo near Cuneo, Italy, in the Maritime Alps, to a family of elementary school teachers. He received a diploma in Land Surveying at Fassino di Busca’s high school with the lowest grades. Briatore found early work as a ski instructor and restaurant manager. He opened a restaurant named Tribüla, which was Briatore’s nickname. The restaurant eventually closed.

In the 1970s, he moved to Cuneo and became an assistant to businessman Attilio Dutto, owner of the Paramatti Vernici (formerly owned by Michele Sindona). Dutto was killed on March 21, 1979 in a car bomb attack by an unknown perpetrator.From then on, Briatore started his unorthodox business career.

Briatore next moved to Milan and worked in the Italian stock exchange. During this period, he met Luciano Benetton, founder of the Benetton clothing company. The two became friends and eventually business partners. When Benetton opened his first five stores in the United States in 1979, he appointed Briatore as director of the group’s American operations.

Due to Benetton’s unorthodox methods of franchising, the chain experienced a brief boom in popularity in the US. By 1989, there were eight hundred stores in the United States. Briatore, having taken a cut of each franchising agreement, became very wealthy.

Benetton was also known for its divisive and attention-grabbing advertisements. Briatore explained how they raised the company’s profile: "We decided to do something very controversial that people would pick up on — 50% of people thought it was great and 50% thought it was awful, but in the meantime everyone was talking about Benetton.

As store owners began to complain of competition from other Benetton stores, the number of stores decreased to two hundred and Briatore began to look for a new business.

Benetton Formula

Briatore attended his first Formula One race, the Australian Grand Prix, in 1988, having in the past proclaimed his lack of interest in the sport. Luciano Benetton appointed him commercial director of his Formula One team, Benetton Formula Ltd. (formerly Toleman), and when he fired the team management shortly thereafter, Briatore was promoted to managing director and set about turning Benetton into a competitive team.

He hired and quickly fired engineer John Barnard. Barnard’s successor was Tom Walkinshaw, whose greatest achievement with the team was to lure young driver Michael Schumacher from the Jordan team after his first F1 race in 1991. Briatore, too, contributed to this achievement. The Times observed that Briatore knew Schumacher could be the best and built a team around him at Benetton that eventually beat the Williams driver Damon Hill to the World Championship after Ayrton Senna was killed at the 1994 San Marino Grand Prix.

Schumacher went on to win at Spa in 1992 and again at Estoril in 1993 before claiming the World Drivers’ Championship in 1994 and 1995. The Benetton team won the World Constructors’ Championship in 1995.

Late in 1994, Briatore purchased the ailing Ligier team to acquire its stock of Renault engines. FIA regulations, however, did not permit him to own the team, so he sold it to Walkinshaw. He took on complete management of Benetton, but when Schumacher and a number of key technical staffers departed for Ferrari in 1996, the team slipped to the middle of the grid.

Briatore purchased a share of the Minardi team in 1996, but being unable to sell it to British American Tobacco, as he had hoped, he sold out to fellow owners Giancarlo Minardi and Gabriele Rumi. Benetton fired him in 1997 in favour of David Richards.

From 1998 to 2000, he led Renault’s motorsport sister company Mecachrome, which provided older 1997 Renault engines to the Williams (1998-1999), Benetton (1998-2000), BAR (1999) and Arrows (2000) teams under the brand names Mecachrome (1998), Supertec (1999-2000) and Playlife (for Benetton 1998-2000).

Renault F1

In 2000, Renault announced its plans to return to Formula One with the purchase of the Benetton Formula team. Briatore returned as managing director and team principal, replacing Rocco Benetton. The team raced as Benetton-Renault in 2001 before becoming Renault F1 in 2002.

Briatore has a reputation as a talent-scout, and probably his greatest ‘find’ has been Fernando Alonso. Briatore met with the teenage Spaniard in 1999. As his manager, Briatore secured him a race drive with Minardi in 2001, and promoted him to test-driver for Renault in 2002.

For 2003, Briatore fired race-driver Jenson Button and replaced him with Alonso. When he replaced Button the outcry was huge, but Briatore stated, ‘Time will tell if I am wrong.’

Renault won both championships in 2005, with Alonso winning the drivers’ title, but he turned his back on Briatore to sign for rivals McLaren for 2007. Despite this, Renault and Alonso retained their titles in 2006.

Briatore also acts as manager for Mark Webber and Heikki Kovalainen, and formerly managed Jarno Trulli and Nelson Piquet, Jr. Despite winning the 2004 Monaco Grand Prix, Trulli was dropped from Renault by Briatore and replaced by Giancarlo Fisichella.

In April 2006, Renault F1’s new president Alain Dassas stated that having a contract with Briatore for 2007 was ‘a key factor’ in securing the company’s commitment to the sport; ‘and we will do everything to ensure Flavio stays… Briatore was duly confirmed as staying at Renault for the 2007 and 2008 seasons on 6 September 2006.

Briatore replaced Alonso with Kovalainen for 2007, saying: "With Kovalainen, I hope to find the anti-Alonso".

Allegations were made during November 2007 by the FIA against the Renault F1 team regarding information they were found to have in their possession concerning the 2006 and 2007 McLaren F1 cars. These allegations were the subject of an FIA investigation, with an FIA hearing taking place 6 December 2007. Renault were found guilty of breaching the same regulation as McLaren, but were not punished. Despite this guilty verdict, Briatore hit back at McLaren’s Ron Dennis, saying: "Here is a team that acquired an advantage illegally. Just read the regulations: for intellectual property theft the punishment is exclusion… Ron Dennis… was the one who protested us on the mass damper. He is not the immaculate saint he pretends to be on his statements.

In August 2009, Briatore was heavily criticised by Nelson Piquet, Jr. after he was sacked from the Renault team. Writing on his own site, Piquet said "A manager is supposed to encourage you, support you, and provide you with opportunities. In my case it was the opposite. Flavio Briatore was my executioner.

In an interview with Autosport magazine, Piquet Jr. said that Briatore "is ignorant about Formula 1” and revealed that “If you listen to the pit-wall radio, it’s like a joke. He hasn’t got a clue what is happening in the race… he makes comments that don’t make any sense.”

The son of the three times F1 champion Nelson Piquet affirmed "everyone knows that his ego is bigger than anything else. He likes to show off. You can be a very good businessman and whatever, but the F1 team itself can do very well without him. The only good thing the team takes out of him is his good relationship with Bernie and the FIA. Other than that, he doesn’t know what is going on. It’s like listening to something my sister would say about the car.

On August 30, 2009, during the Belgian Grand Prix, Brazilian journalist Reginaldo Leme stated in the live television coverage from Globo TV that Nelson Piquet, Jr. had intentionally spun off during the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix, following Briatore’s orders. This accusation is still unconfirmed, but, according to Leme, FIA has hired a private firm to investigate the matter.






Nelsinho loses his shirt to Flavio

By Nasir Hameed

Nelsinho Piquet, son of a three time world champion, has been blown out at Renault by Briatore. The 24-year old Brazilian survived a tumultuous rookie season at Renault last year, and this season has again failed to even close to matching the performance of his two-time world champion teammate, Fernando Alonso.

Piquet Junior was born in Heidelberg, Germany, on July 25, 1985, to Nelson Piquet and a Dutch model. The senior Piquet won two Formula 1 world championships with Bernie Ecclestone owned Brabham team. First in 1981, and then two years later he became the first turbo-powered world champion in a BMW-powered Brabham. His third and final championship came on board a Honda-powered Williams in 1987.

Nelsinho, like his father in 1978, won the British Formula 3 Championship in 2004. In 2005, he won both the opening races of the new A1GP series in September at Brands Hatch. Same year he made his debut in GP2, the official feeder series to Formula 1, and scored a win at Spa-Francorchamps.

Flashing signs of brilliance and shades of dad’s talents, Nelsinho won 4 races and 6 pole positions and finished on the podium in eight races in the 2006 GP2 Championship. Scoring 102 points compared to current Grand Prix driver Timo Glock’s 60 points, Piquet Junior was ahead of all competitors except a rookie from England-Lewis Hamilton.

The world of Formula 1 was not kind to Nelsinho. And, if his latest tirade is to be believed, nor was his manager, Flavio Briatore, who also happens to be Renault’s F1 boss. Nelsinho had two difficult challenges to overcome, both in his rookie season last year and again this year.

First, the lack of a competitive package from the Enstone-based team. Long gone are the halcyon days of back to back championships which, in the hands of current teammate Fernando Alonso, brought to an end the Schumacher dynasty.

That teammate was Nelsinho’s biggest nightmare. Alonso was to Nelsinho what Senna was to Michael Andretti. The kid had no chance. Last year Alonso managed to grab two wins while Nelsinho failed to even out qualify the Spaniard once.

Nelsinho was losing the battle on another front also. The rise of Romain Grosjean in GP2 competition. The Swiss driver is, in the words of a former French Formula 1 driver, being promoted as French by Bruno Michel, Flavio’s right hand man who runs the GP2 series. But quick he is. After winning the F3 Euro series in 2007, Romain was a race winning driver last year in his rookie GP2 campaign.

The Blue Danube

Flavio Briatore departed the Hungarian Grand Prix before the checkered flag and after his star driver and client dropped out when the Renault became a tri-cycle following a pit stop. Message was clear, who cares about Nelsinho?

Then came war of words.

Flavio accused his young charge of coming up with driver’s excuses. "When a driver lacks results, he opens the book of excuses and begins, ‘the fault is the weather, a spectator’s sunglasses, a spin on the straight, this and that’," Briatore said. "It’s not true that there’s a technical difference of seven tenths between Alonso’s and Piquet’s car”.

Nelsinho, after confirming he has been released by Renault, is hitting back at Briatore with his own Brazilian carnauba wax. In a statement released today he accuses Briatore by saying: “A manager is supposed to encourage you, support you, and provide you with opportunities. In my case it was the opposite. Flavio Briatore was my executioner.”

Fall of the Apple

Damon Hill remains the only son of a world champion to also take the title in motor racing’s top category. Jacques Villeneuve was able to achieve the title which his late father so richly deserved. Most off springs of great racing champions have not experienced comfortable ride in their pursuit of fatherly achievements.

The Mansell brothers, Greg and Leo, Mathias Lauda, Christian Jones and Nicholas Prost are all carrying on the family name in a cut throat world but lacking the drive, desire and determination that made their fathers household names and world champions.

Nelsinho Piquet, described by Peter Windsor as “grumpy in the best of times”, now belongs to this club.

No jacket required.

More Brawn in china



The rest of the field continue to play catch up to the day glo Brawn’s.

Button hits out at Flavio Briatore after the Italian criticised Brawn GP.

McLaren showing good pace with new interim diffuser design.

BMW cars are both running KERS this weekend yet still struggling for pace.

Ferrari have dropped their KERS device do to reliability issues.

Renault’s Fernando Alonso still believes his team can be competitive.

Nico Rosberg is convinced Williams will fight for wins this season.

Second practice times:

Pos Driver Team Time Laps
1. Button Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.679 35
2. Rosberg Williams-Toyota (B) 1:35.704 + 0.025 36
3. Barrichello Brawn-Mercedes (B) 1:35.881 + 0.202 35
4. Webber Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.105 + 0.426 32
5. Vettel Red Bull-Renault (B) 1:36.167 + 0.488 22
6. Trulli Toyota (B) 1:36.217 + 0.538 42
7. Nakajima Williams-Toyota (B) 1:36.377 + 0.698 32
8. Glock Toyota (B) 1:36.548 + 0.869 40
9. Kovalainen McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.674 + 0.995 34
10. Bourdais Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:36.800 + 1.121 34
11. Sutil Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:36.829 + 1.150 30
12. Massa Ferrari (B) 1:36.847 + 1.168 34
13. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes (B) 1:36.941 + 1.262 28
14. Raikkonen Ferrari (B) 1:37.054 + 1.375 33
15. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari (B) 1:37.219 + 1.540 34
16. Piquet Renault (B) 1:37.273 + 1.594 36
17. Kubica BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.491 + 1.812 34
18. Heidfeld BMW-Sauber (B) 1:37.544 + 1.865 28
19. Alonso Renault (B) 1:37.638 + 1.959 28
20. Fisichella Force India-Mercedes (B) 1:37.750 + 2.071 31

Shanghai International Grand Prix Circuit is reputed to be Asia’s most advanced Grand Prix Circuit. Having completed its’ inaugural year, in September 2004, the Chinese Grand Prix is poised to be the major Grand Prix of the F1 Circuit.

The grandstand of the racing field is designed to have 200 thousand seats, 50 thousand of which are on the main and sub grandstands, and the remaining seats are temporary seats on the slopes. The main architecture and other main buildings of the racing field cover 150 thousand square metres, including the main and sub grandstands, direct center, news centre, race team living zone, and pit stops, etc. The architectures combined the modern design concept with traditional Chinese culture.

Shanghai International Circuit is located on northeast of Anting Township in the Jiading District of Shanghai, an old county with a kind folkway, neighbouring the world famous Shanghai International Auto City, 30 km from the centre of Shanghai city and 20 km to Hongqiao International airport. It is surrounded by high grade highways of Jiajin(A5), Jiasong, and A30, etc., and the planned mass transit line R3 will reach the racing field directly.

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