Whitmarsh surprise guest at Merc launch
25 January, 2010
Jan.25 (GMM) Plans to revive the common car launch concept for 2011 are not yet in place, FOTA chairman Martin Whitmarsh said on Monday.
The Briton and McLaren boss, who was attending the launch of the Mercedes GP livery in Stuttgart, said the event to launch all the 2010 cars at the same time was called off because too few teams would have been ready by late January.
As for whether the teams association will try again for 2011, he said: “We haven’t yet discussed it for 2011.
“We still think it’s a good idea; it’s now a question of whether we can coordinate the availability of sufficient new cars to make a joint launch an interesting spectacle for next year,” Whitmarsh added.
It was also reported on Monday that McLaren test driver Gary Paffett will give the MP4-25 its track debut at Valencia next Monday, in the wake of Pedro de la Rosa’s departure for Sauber.
“Obviously, Pedro’s decision to sign with Sauber will have a slight impact on our test programme, but we’ll overcome it,” Whitmarsh said.
Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button respectively are still expected to drive the 2010 car on days two and three of the Spanish session.
It also emerged on Monday that F1′s Sporting Working Group late last week approved the touted points system tweak.
We reported more than two weeks ago that moves were afoot to increase the difference between first and seconds places from 5 to 7 points.
The new system of 25-18-15-12-10-8-6-4-2-1 will therefore replace the recently announced system of 25-20-15-10-8-6-5-3-2-1, pending the approval of the F1 Commission and World Motor Sport Council.