FIA President Jean Todt has spoken to confirm that USF1 will come under close scrutiny in an effort to ascertain precisely why the failed North Carolina-based outfit did not make the starting grid in F1 2010 – and at whose feet the blame, and any possible sanctions, should fall.
A vaguely-worded statement issued earlier today by the governing body revealed that Todt would be mandated to take 'appropriate action' over the matter [see separate story – click here
], given that in many people's eyes the whole sorry saga of the first American team to attempt to join the top flight in more than two decades had done the sport's global image no favours at all, and indeed if anything had turned F1 into something of a laughing stock and painted the FIA's reputedly painstaking selection process to decide upon new entrants as an inefficient farce.
Whether any disciplinary proceedings or prosecution will follow the investigation into USF1's conduct remains unclear, but key to the outcome will doubtless be the information provided to Todt by his Deputy President for Sport and President of the FIA Senate Nick Craw, a man who is also the President of the Automobile Competition Committee for the US (ACCUS).
“The non-appearance of US F1 is definitely a disappointment,” the Frenchman is quoted as having said by SPEED TV
, “and my colleague Nick Craw will not contradict me because he has been very close to this team. We were hoping that an American-based team would be at the start, [but] it wasn't possible.
“Yesterday the World Council asked me to review the situation, and that's part of the introduction of the new disciplinary panel, which was yesterday voted at the World Council. I will report to the World Council, Graham Stoker as the President of Sport will pass the report to the competent people – and we will see what happens.
“When I say that it's very disappointing, I know that they have tried hard [and] made a lot of effort. As you all know, [FIA chief technical delegate] Charlie Whiting went there and saw some facilities, and saw some cars under construction. Unfortunately, it was not enough to have two cars at the start of the first grand prix.”