Posts Tagged ‘force india’

USF1 is now USGPE

March 5th, 2009 No comments

Bernie EcclestoneAfter the rumour, hype and, finally, launch of new American Formula One team, USF1, Bernie Ecclestone has suddenly remembered that he thinks he owns the trademark on ‘F1’ and has forced the team to change their name.  USF1 will now be known as US Grand Prix Engineering or USGPE.

This is despite the fact that in 2007 the UK Trademark Registry refused to grant Formula One Licensing exclusive use of the term ‘F1’ as it considered it a generic term.  In fact the only official trademark they own is  ‘FIA Formula One World Championship’.

This is crazy.  Aparently the fact that Bernie owned the trademark to ‘F1’ must have slipped his mind while he was helping the team get off the ground.  He also doesn’t seem to mind other teams using ‘F1’ in their names; Williams Grand Prix Engineering goes under the trading name of WilliamsF1.

But Bernie didn’t stop there.  Not content with going after teams that use ‘F1’ he also wants to own anything that might look like ‘F1’.  It seems if you squint really hard the Force India ‘FI’ logo sort of looks a bit like ‘F1’.  And of course Bernie owns that so it has to change.

Neither of these teams could afford any kind of legal challenge so they have little choice but to cave in to Ecclestone’s demands but this kind of thing does more harm to the F1 brand than good.

I’m not sure which is worse, Brawn Racing or USGPE…

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Force India launches VJM02 (officially)

March 1st, 2009 No comments

Sutil and Fisichella with the Force India VJM02.

Force India have officially launched their 2009 challenger, the VJM02, at the Circuit de Jerez in Spain on Sunday.

Pictures of the new car, which uses a Mercedes-Benz engine and  McLaren gearbox, hydraulics system and KERS, were posted on the internet on Saturday.

Force India’s 2008 car used Ferrari power but a partnership deal signed with McLaren in November meant the team had a lot of work to do to adapt the VJM02 to the Mercedes-Benz engine and McLaren gearbox.

Force India failed to score any points last year, something that team boss Dr Vijay Mallya wants to see change in 2009:

I would like to see a strong start, rising to points mid-season and a definite improvement in qualifying. Regular points finishes should be the aim.

Force India have missed the first two group test sessions and Giancarlo Fisichella admits they are at a disadvantage launching their new car so late:

It is a disadvantage as it’s important to drive as much as you can before the start of the year to get a feeling with the car and try and establish a good set-up. It’s not easy in just four days, especially with the new rules coming in this year. We are just going to have to try and get as much as we can from these eight days before the season.

Giancarlo Fisichella will kick off the testing of the VJM02 on Sunday and Monday, with team mate Adrian Sutil taking over for the final two days of testing.

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Force India VJM02 pictures

February 28th, 2009 No comments

Force IndiaForce India’s 2009 challenger, the VJM02, is due to be launched at Jerez on Sunday but pictures of the new car have been posted on the Force India website.

The car has a new paint scheme for 2009 that uses the saffron, white and green colours of the Indian Flag.

The sidepods have an interesting squarish shape and the wing mirrors look like they have been sculpted into little aerofoils.  Force India have decided not to carry over the shark fin from the VJM01.

The McLaren powered car will take to the track for the first time at Jerez on Sunday.

Pictures of the new car are below:

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Force India to unveil new car

February 23rd, 2009 No comments

Force IndiaForce India will unveil their car for 2009 at the Jerez circuit in Spain this weekend, the team announced on Monday.

The VJM02 will take to the Spanish track for the first time on Sunday, before beginning its development programme ahead of the start of the season in Melbourne.

Last year’s car was powered by Ferrari and Force India have been working hard since the end of last season to adapt the VJM02 to new engine supplier Mercedes-Benz.  A deal with McLaren will also see Force India use McLaren gearboxes and KERS devices.

Technical Director, James Key has said that work on parts of the car to make the switch from Ferrari to Mercedes-Benz were fairly straightforward, while other bits were more complicated:

Some areas of the car matched very well with the new packaging requirements we had, while in other areas it was significantly different.  Effectively we have had to redesign quite a bit of the car, and starting in November, that’s been quite a major undertaking.

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