Joe Saward

The clock says 03.15 and here in Shanghai it is pretty quiet. The elevated freeway that stretches away into the darkness is almost empty. There are only 30 cars at the intersection below my hotel window where normally there are 200
I don’t know John Leicester, but I do know that he is what we call “an agency man”, with more than 20 years experience with the Associated Press, a venerable institution that is generally trustworthy. For the last five years Leicester has been a sports columnist and he has just produced a very good column […]
I read that some talking head from the Italian Olympic Committee has come out and talked about Formula 1, in support of Ferrari’s campaign to have Fernando Alonso and Kimi Raikkonen ride dinosaurs around the Circus Maximus. I have some advice for him: Go away, shut up and worry about your own sport. If that […]
As I mentioned the other day, the small teams in Formula 1 are becoming rather more active as they struggle to survive without a cost cap. The four Caterham, Force India, Marussia and Sauber, wrote to the FIA last week saying that they want to have a voice in decision-making and hinting that the F1 […]
The FIA Senate has increased its membership to 16, in accordance with the new FIA Statutes, which give the FIA President the power to nominate four candidates. This means that there are now eight elected members, four members by right (included on the President’s election ticket) and four presidential appointees.
Stop and think about it for a moment: have you ever seen a Ferrari advertisement in a newspaper or a magazine? You won’t find one, because the company policy since the very beginning has been NOT to advertise. Enzo Ferrari was not really interested in building or selling road cars
Infiniti Red Bull Racing has lost its appeal against Daniel Riciardo’s exclusion from the Australian Grand Prix. No surprise there. The details are not available as the FIA has yet to put out a statement but Red Bull said that it “accepts the ruling of the International Court of Appeal today
The Mercedes AMG Formula One Team today announced that Bob Bell is to leave his position as Technical Director. Bob resigned his position in December 2013 and will leave the team at the end of November 2014, with the intention of pursuing new challenges outside the company.
There are a lot of stories today about Marco Mattiacci, the new head of Ferrari Gestione Sportiva, who is replacing Stefano Domenicali. He grew up in Rome and is 42 years of age. He is reported to have started his career at Jaguar Italia in 1989, which would have meant that he was only 17 […]
Stefano Domenicali has stepped down as Ferrari team principal. The news had not been expected. “There are certain moments in the professional life of each of us where it takes courage to make tough decisions,” Domenicali said.
I was reading the other day about Sir David Brailsford’s decision to stand down as performance director of British Cycling in order to concentrate his efforts on being team principal of Team Sky. The report said that Brailsford “is currently preparing for this year’s Tour de France which starts in Yorkshire on 5 July and […]
The FIA finally got round to putting out a press release relating to the World Council meeting in Marrakech today. The release came hours after Haas Formula had announced that it had been granted a licence to compete in F1 in the future. No details were given by either party with regard to the date […]
Gene Haas, founder of Haas Automation and co-owner of Stewart-Haas Racing in the NASCAR Sprint Cup Series, has been granted a Formula 1 license by the FIA. The news has yet to be confirmed by the federation, but Haas presumably knows what he is talking about.
Force India has been doing remarkably well on the race tracks this year, with Nico Hulkenberg lying third in the World Championship after Bahrain and Sergio Perez picking up the team’s first podium since Giancarlo Fisichella’s amazing show at Spa in 2009. This means that the team is currently second in the Constructors’ Championship.
Marussia finished 10th in the Constructors’ World Championship last year and hoped that this year a new Ferrari engine would help to lift its performance into the midfield. There have been flashes of potential but thus far it has not proved to be the case and after the first three races of the year, Marussia […]
Red Bull Racing has announced that it has appointed Dan Fallows as its Head of Aerodynamics at Red Bull as it has failed to convince Peter Prodromou not to head off to McLaren. Prodromou thus begins his six months of gardening leave, which means that he will not be able to join McLaren until the […]
The F1 teams are testing today in Bahrain but not many people stayed on to watch as they have been away from home for somewhere between two weeks and a month, depending on whether they stayed out in Asia between Australia and Malaysia. There were a lot of F1 folk on the Emirates flight out […]
A lot has happened since the last blog post. The Bahrain Grand Prix was terrific and completely debunked the politicking that Bernie Ecclestone and Luca Montezemolo were up to before the race. The new formula was not only brilliant technically but it led to a great race
One might almost feel sorry for Ferrari chairman Luca Montezemolo, who turned up in Bahrain and tried to convince the Formula 1 world that the new rules produce boring racing. He used the word “taxi racing”, while Bernie Ecclestone, who was banging the same drum, muttered about touring car engines. Neither was much in evidence […]
A while ago now, in the UK, there was a popular music chart television programme, made by the BBC, called Top of the Pops. It ran for 42 years. It was a countdown to find out what was the Number One that week.
The British Grand Prix is to take place over four days this year, rather than three days as has been the norm. The circuit says that it will have an open pitlane on Thursday and there is already a Kaiser Chiefs concert planned for Thursday evening. The decision is designed to give fans more value […]
It was a tad cool in Bahrain yesterday. I am told by people who think they understand these things that this is caused by global warming. As I wandered about, I suddenly felt like I was in a zoo, at least metaphorically-speaking.
The Long Beach City Council has proposed a three-year extension with the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach that will keep IndyCars racing there until 2018 but will open the the event for bidding. This satisfies both parties as the Grand Prix Association of Long Beach, the current promoter, wanted an extension, while the F1 […]
After a couple of days spent working in a hotel room in Dubai – doing some real old-fashioned research for an historical piece for next week’s GP+ – it was off to the airport this morning for the short hop to Bahrain, not much more than a climb after take-off to 26,000 ft followed by […]
There is a story kicking around today that Red Bull has acquired the Cosworth F1 project and intends to switch engines in June, dumping Renault. It is April 1 and any switched on PR person would know that it is probably not the best time to leak a story if one wants to be taken […]
Williams has always been a racing team and wants to keep the focus on competition, even if there is much potential in using its technology to create revenue. The announcement that it has sold Williams Hybrid Power Ltd to GKN in “a multi-million Pound transaction” is not really a surprise, although the firm will probably […]
It has been busy since the end of the race in KL. Having crashed out GP+ in five and a half hours, we took off to the airport (right next door but a 15 minute drive around the airport) and we were soon in the Emirates lounge at KLIA, still writing words until the 02.00 […]
The Malaysian Grand Prix was a tough race for all concerned, but Mercedes AMG Petronas stayed ahead of the pack and Lewis Hamilton showed Nico Rosberg the way, leading all but half a lap in sweltering conditions. Rosberg never mounted a serious challenge and Nico was never really threatened by Sebastian Vettel in third, although […]
I am flying to Kuala Lumpur today and that will give me the chance to forget about the flighty Chinese visa I have been chasing in recent days with a proverbial butterfly net. The folks in Shanghai insist that all will be well and it will all be done in the time available. I have […]
The Independent really should know better. This morning it has a very dubious story based on a quote from Ron Walker, the Melbourne Grand Prix promoter saying that F1 race promoters will walk away from the sport because of the new engine noise. Just because someone says something does not make it true
My first editor taught me that one should never complain to the readers about life as an F1 journalist. It was good advice because fans do not want to hear it. However, sometimes it is interesting to explain some of the things required to do this wonderful job – not least getting all the visas […]
The last day of the Bahrain GP2 test saw Britain’s Jon Lancaster (MP Motorsport) come out on top of the time sheets less than a tenth of a second over Alexander Rossi (Caterham). Williams test driver Felipe Nasr was third ahead of McLaren counterpart Stoffel Vandoorne. They were followed by Daniel Abt (Hilmer Motorsport) and […]
Red Bull’s decision to appeal the exclusion of Daniel Ricciardo in Melbourne is entirely predictable, but I am not sure what will be gained from this, except perhaps diverting attention away from the team’s lacklustre performance overall since the new cars first appeared. The FIA stewards in Melbourne seem to have had a pretty good […]
Sergey Vorobyev has taken over from Oleg Zabara as the man putting together the Russian GP. If all goes to plan, the race will be held around the Olympic Park in Sochi. Richard Cregan, who has run the Abu Dhabi circuit in recent years is now working as a consultant to Sochi
Rio Haryanto and Alexander Rossi finished 1-2 on the time sheets in the GP2 test in Bahrain on Thursday. The pair were separated by four-hundredths of a second and were four-tenths clear of the third fastest driver Carlin’s Julian Leal. The three day test is the last before the season kicks off and it looks […]
Chris Pook has been explaining the plans for F1 to return to Long Beach, speaking to local businessmen in the city. He says that the race will cost the city nothing and that $9.2 million required to improve the current circuit would be paid by the promoter. The promoter would not charge the city for […]
Ron Walker has announced that he will step down as chairman of the Australian Grand Prix next year. It is anticipated that he will be replaced by John Harnden, a former CEO of the event, who has been organising the 2015 Cricket World Cup.
Formula 1 has tried for many years to give a professional impression with its use of car liveries. Back in the 1950s the cars were painted up in national colours.
The race promoters of Formula 1 are like no different to the teams. They have never been able to work together. They all have their own, very different, agendas
Wow. Now that was a busy weekend… I do apologise for not posting much but it seemed that I was busy all the time, rushing about during the day and writing at night.
We apologise for the delay this evening, as the FIA Stewards took five hours to decide whether or not to exclude Daniel Ricciardo. The Australian Grand Prix was the start of a new era in Formula 1 history – and the race in Albert Park provided plenty of surprises, controversy and questions that will need […]
Federico Gastaldi has been appointed the new Deputy Team Principal of Lotus F1. He will oversee the racing operations of the team as Gerard Lopez, officially the team principal, will not be doing all the races. Gastaldi has worked for Lotus F1 Team since 2010 when he joined as Director of Business Development
It has been very busy thus far in Albert Park, catching up with the folk unseen in the winter, filling in the gaps… The oddest story thus far has been the disappearance of Dickie Stanford, the Williams TM. No real explanation as yet as to why one of the pillars of the team has been […]
It felt like half the F1 circus was stuck in Dubai for an extra four hours when the A380 on which we were all due to travel to Melbourne went technical. A tiresome start to the year, but Melbourne is its usual lovely self.
As members of the F1 circus wing their way to Australia for the season-opener next weekend in Melbourne, there is a fascinating story to be found in San Francisco, regarding things that effect the environment. Automobile racing is often held up as being a bad thing because it burns a small amount of fuel.
Poor CVC Capital Partners. They seem to be earning very little money from Formula One these days.
The GP+ Formula 1 season preview is now ready for downloading. To download the magazine, all you need to do is go to and click on the subscriber tab. You can then input your login and password codes and download the magazine into you own computer
On 14 January 2014, a group of NGOs sent a joint letter to FIA President Jean Todt regarding the human rights situation in Bahrain. The letter urged the FIA to suspend the 2014 Bahrain Grand Prix until its Ethics Committee has held an inquiry to investigate the impact the Grand Prix has on the human […]
I think it is fair to say that Ron Dennis is Old School Formula 1. That’s good for McLaren perhaps, because he aims to bring the team back to focus on what is important and to win.
Williams has announced that it will be known as Wiliams Martini Racing. “We are thrilled to welcome Martini to the Williams family and officially launch Williams Martini Racing,” said Sir Frank Williams, founder and team principal of Williams. “Williams and Martini share a rich history in the world of motorsport, and the values of our […]