Herbert warns Liberty Media not to become Pushovers to Big Teams

Ryan Ashenhurst
Ryan Ashenhurst
Ryan Ashenhurst
Contributor

Ex-F1 racer, SkySports F1 pundit and Alonso agitator Johnny Herbert has urged Liberty Media to push through with their budgetary plans regarding providing a safety net for smaller teams even if the bigger teams threaten to quit the sport. 

Johnny Herbert was a driver for no less than seven teams in his Formula One career, from the financially safe  and believes that Liberty Media’s involvement with redistributing the funds across the F1 grid can’t fall too heavily under the influence of the Empires of Ferrari, Red Bull and Mercedes.

Felipe Nasr (BRA), Sauber F1 Team. Suzuka Circuit.
Felipe Nasr (BRA), Sauber F1 Team.
Suzuka Circuit.

“The smaller teams in many regards are more important then the bigger teams. They are the heart and soul of the sport. Force India and Williams do a brilliant job. For the buck that they spend on a season they do a better job than Mercedes but they don’t win.”

– Johnny Herbert

Manor Racing’s financial collapse couldn’t had arrived at a worse time, they may have been saved by Liberty’s redistribution if it had arrived on the scene a bit earlier. Herbert is absolutely bang on the money. What would the Constructor standings look like if it were determined by a dollar:performance ratio? Force India would probably be top of the standings.

Sahara Force India F1 Team's Mexican driver Sergio Perez drives during the qualifying session at Silverstone motor racing circuit in Silverstone, central England, on July 9, 2016, ahead of tomorrow's British Formula One Grand Prix. Lewis Hamilton completed a clean sweep by topping the times ahead of Mercedes team-mate and rival Nico Rosberg in Saturdays crash-interrupted final practice for the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. / AFP / ADRIAN DENNIS (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)
Sahara Force India F1 Team’s Mexican driver Sergio Perez drives during the qualifying session at Silverstone motor racing circuit in Silverstone, central England, on July 9, 2016, ahead of tomorrow’s British Formula One Grand Prix.
Lewis Hamilton completed a clean sweep by topping the times ahead of Mercedes team-mate and rival Nico Rosberg in Saturdays crash-interrupted final practice for the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. / AFP / ADRIAN DENNIS (Photo credit should read ADRIAN DENNIS/AFP/Getty Images)

 

“To get that you need distribution of payments across the board. If the bigger teams don’t like it, and threaten to leave, Liberty would be right to put pressure on them. They would be doing it for the good of F1.”

– Johnny Herbert

We all know he’s primarily talking about Ferrari. The team get the biggest sponsorship deals, which is fair enough given their history with the sport, but to deliberately veto things like the engine cost cap in 2015 does damage to the brand. It shows a lack of confidence in their own abilities if anything. If their only way to succeed is through outspending, then they aren’t promoting an air of competition, and should feel a degree of shame in how they go about it.

MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - MAY 25: The mystery guest round of the Shell F1 quiz as Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari and Kimi Raikkonen of Finland and Ferrari, try to guess who Johnny Herbert, Sky Sports F1, is during the Formula One Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 27, 2016 in Monte-Carlo. (Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images)
MONTE-CARLO, MONACO – MAY 25: The mystery guest round of the Shell F1 quiz as Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari and Kimi Raikkonen of Finland and Ferrari, try to guess who Johnny Herbert, Sky Sports F1, is during the Formula One Grand Prix of Monaco at Circuit de Monaco on May 27, 2016 in Monte-Carlo. (Photo by Getty Images/Getty Images)

Maybe they’ll reign it in this time and let Liberty get on with it. Vetoing cost caps hasn’t exactly translated to results on the track have they?

Ferrari couldn’t manage a pole position last season, their last pole came at Singapore in 2015. Here are 10 teams who only achieved a single pole position in their Formula One history: