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Volume 6 No. 195

Leagues and Governing Bodies

Scottish Football League CEO David Longmuir Wednesday night challenged the Scottish Premier League "to put principles before pounds and back his bold vision for Scottish football's future," according to Euan McLean of the Scotland DAILY RECORD. Longmuir "threw down the gauntlet to the top flight after his plan was unanimously backed by the 30 lower-division clubs at a Hampden summit." The key element of the plan "calls for a merger of the two governing bodies overseeing a 16-team Premier League, a 10-team Championship and 16-strong First Division with no Old Firm colts sides." Longmuir, who also "unveiled plans for a Champions League-style revamp of the League Cup," admits that he "faces a challenge to convince the SPL’s 12-member clubs to back his plan." Longmuir said, "The mood for change is strong and our clubs want the SFL to take assertive leadership" (DAILY RECORD, 11/15). The SCOTSMAN reported Longmuir "will now take the proposal to the Professional Game Board and the SPL, including its CEO Neil Doncaster." Longmuir told STV: "I’m delighted to say that, at this morning’s meeting, we got clear direction from all 30 clubs unanimously that they would like us to continue to develop this proposal and to take it to, first of all the Professional Game Board, and then through dialogue with Neil and the members of the SPL." Whatever happens, compromise "will be required if change is made, with the possible merger of the SPL and SFL." Longmuir said, "I grew up in Scottish football with only one league body, and it served us quite well. We had differences of opinion, but we were able to make decisions quicker, we were able to grow the game better, we were able to come to conclusions" (SCOTSMAN, 11/15).

F1 cars will be powered by six-cylinder turbo engines starting in '14 under the racing series' new engine regulations that are supposed to "revolutionize F1," according to AUTO MOTOR UND SPORT. F1 team Toro Rosso will switch its engines from Ferrari to Renault. There are also rumors that Force India will switch from Mercedes to Ferrari engines in '14. The regulations will allow current V8 engines to be replaced by 1.6-liter turbo engines with direct injection, integrated hybrid technology and drastically reduced gas mileage. The gas mileage of F1 cars "will decrease by one-third." The cars will be allowed to carry only 100kg of gas (135 liters) during a race. Because Mercedes, Ferrari and Renault have each individually spent more than €90M ($115M) on the development of the new engines, the prices for their customer teams will also increase. Currently, all customer teams pay €8M ($10.2M) annually for the engine service. The prices for KERS (kinetic energy recovery system) fluctuate, depending on the provider, between €1M ($1.3M) (Ferrari) and €6M ($7.7M) (Mercedes). In '14, customer teams can expect to pay up to €21M ($26.8M) for the whole package. Perhaps there also will be fluctuation depending on the manufacturer. The question that remains is, "what will happen to the two Cosworth teams HRT and Murrusia, given they are still competing in '14?" (AUTO MOTOR UND SPORT, 11/15).

The Hong Kong Golf Association is "on tenterhooks" as a HK$1.6M ($206,000) sanction fee for hosting the Hong Kong Open "has still not been confirmed," according to Alvin Sallay of the SOUTH CHINA MORNING POST. A "worst-case-scenario could see the HKGA left penniless" from the $2M event that begins Sunday, and HGKA CEO Iain Valentine said it would be a "tremendous blow" to the game's governing body. Valentine: "Our sanction fee, which is usually 10% of the prize money, has still not been agreed on." The Hong Kong Open is jointly sanctioned by the European Tour and the Asian Tour, while the HKGA also gets a sanction fee. Due "to the difficulties this year in finding a title sponsor," as well as other subsidiary backers, all three partners have decided to wait until Sunday "to divide any surplus kitty, if one exists" (SCMP 11/15).

The Burman family, promoters of consumer conglomerate Dabur India, "has taken up the Mumbai franchise of the Hockey India League," making it the fifth of the six field hockey teams that will compete in the league beginning in January (PTI, 11/14). ... A Pheu Thai MP for Bangkok "filed a petition" with the National Anti-Corruption Commission, asking if it could investigate Bangkok Governor Sukhumbhand Paribatra and one of his deputies "for malfeasance over the delay in the completion of the Bangkok Futsal Arena." Jirayu Huangsap, the petitioner, said that Sukhumbhand, deputy Bangkok Governor Theerachon Manomaipiboon and some city officials "might have been involved in irregularities in hiring a private company to build the arena and the spending of the budget allocated for the construction" (BANGKOK POST, 11/14). ... The brand design for the 2012 UEFA Europa League final in Bucharest, Romania has won the platinum award, which is the highest honor, for Event Brand Design at the Int'l MarCom Awards in Dallas, U.S. The design was created by London-based Designwerk agency (UEFA).