Volkswagen Plans To Join F1 In 2015; Reportedly Talking With Sauber Team
German automaker Volkswagen "plans to join the F1 racing series in '15," according to Peter Hesseler of SPEEDWEEK.de. The Wolfsburg-based company "is reportedly in talks with the Sauber F1 team to start a partnership." Even governing body FIA "is reportedly in favor of an F1 comeback of VW." In addition to cooperation plans with Sauber, VW "is secretly working on building its own F1 chassis." An F1 involvement could boost the automaker's image in key markets such as China, the U.S., Brazil and Russia (SPEEDWEEK, 8/16).
ISTANBUL IN '13?: MOTORSPORT-TOTAL.com's Sven Haidinger reported that F1 CEO Bernie Ecclestone "believes a return of F1 to Turkey in '13 is in the realm of possibilities if the sides could agree on a sanctioning fee amount." The Turkish F1 Grand Prix, which was part of the F1 calendar from '05-11, was dropped in '12 due to "low attendance numbers in previous years and the disagreement about the sanctioning figure amount." A new hope for a return of the race was sparked by Ecclestone's comments in Wednesday's issue of the Turkish "Haber Türk" newspaper. Ecclestone said that he and the teams were always "happy" with the race. Ecclestone said, "If we can resolve the problem [of the sanction fee amount], then Turkey will return to the F1 calendar" (MOTORSPORT-TOTAL.com, 8/15).