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Williams has Lotus experience: Formula 1 success is not worth it

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W illiams is once again one of the top teams in Formula 1 After a decade of slack, the third oldest Formula 1 racing team surprised last year with a third place in the constructors' championship. And that wasn't a flash in the pan. Williams has established himself on the podium in Formula 1. After 9 out of 19 races, Williams is back in 3rd place. More comfortable than ever.

Last year at the same time, Williams felt the hot breath of Ferrari and Force India. The Dino from Grove was 3 points behind third Ferrari and 12 points ahead of fifth Force India. Now you're lonely with 151 points in 3rd place. Red Bull is 88 points behind. Ferrari seems to be more likely to catch up with 211 points.

2014 with a big loss

20 years ago the Williams success story would have paid off. There would be three new sponsors on the car by now. And now? From 2014 to 2015 only Rexona was added. Laughed by Lotus. The Unilever Group will pay 12 million euros for the lettering. But that's only a fraction of what Williams would need to take the next step. Anyone who seriously wants to drive for the world title with Mercedes and Ferrari needs a budget of 200 to 250 million euros.

Williams spent a total of 113.7 million pounds in 2014. That was 144.4 million euros at the rate at that time. However, the revenue of the Formula 1 team was only 71.2 million pounds, which at the time corresponded to 90.5 million euros. The loss of almost 50 million was pushed down by profits in other branches of business to 43 million euros.

Bottas transfer is supposed to fill the hole in the Williams budget

Williams spoke of a transition year. In the hope, of course, that with the success, new sponsors will take a bite and the gap to the loss of the Venezuelan PDVSA cartel can be closed. But the bill does not work out, even if Williams is third from Bernie Ecclestone's pot this year, receiving 28 million dollars (25.4 million euros) more than 12 months ago. You had to be satisfied with the distribution for ninth place in the 2013 season.

In 2016, the subsidy from the Ecclestone pot will only increase marginally. Assuming Williams defends 3rd place. If no sponsor is added, Williams will either have to cut his budget or over hisLiving conditions. Just like the Lotus did in 2012 and 2013. So it is no coincidence that Williams is asking Ferrari to pay the € 20 million transfer fee for Valtteri Bottas. She would plug the hole. But Ferrari doesn't want to pay that much.

The story of the nose shows that Williams cannot compare with the big teams despite the good results. The development of a shorter nose was postponed until 2016. Because the time saved doesn't justify the expense. At Ferrari, Mercedes, McLaren or Red Bull, the nose would also be built if it only produced a tenth.

Lotus joined in Risk strategy on the nose

Even if Williams got the money, nothing would be won. Then the team could spend as much money as last year. But that's only enough for 3rd place. And if Red Bull and McLaren-Honda get back on their feet with much larger budgets, not even that. Lotus owner Gerard Lopez stated factually: 'Williams is in the same position today as we were two years ago. To get to 3rd place, you have to take an unacceptable financial risk.'

In 2012 and 2013, Lotus fought with the greats. They fought with Mercedes and Ferrari over the role of crown prince behind Red Bull. With the same risk strategy as Williams now. Success should bring sponsors. Lotus couldn't count on Ecclestone. In contrast to Williams, the racing team is not one of the privileged teams and therefore does not receive any special payments. 'You can only come to this club if you become a double world champion or if you are named Ferrari', registered one of the critics of this system.

The conclusion: 'Success in Formula 1 is not rewarded. Because you can no longer find sponsors , and because the distribution of income is unfair. To get more money, you would have to achieve something that only a manufacturer can manage. You don't even have to compete below 200 million. It is therefore unfair when the big ones scold the little ones , They couldn't handle the money. If everyone spends what they really have, the midfield will soon be three seconds behind. '

Lotus is cutting its budget

Lotus has responded. Since last year, the racing team has only been spending the money that has been collected. That's under £ 100 million this year. 3rd place can be removed. The goal is 5th place. You could also live with sixth place. You set yourself realistic goals. Lotus experiences the paradoxical situation that one is again under fire for the new policy. 'In the past we couldn't do math. Now people say we're broke. Just because we spend as much as we have.' The books in Companies House show that there has been a black zero since 2014.

A sale to Renaulttherefore not excluded. For Lotus the only way to get back to where you were. A written offer from the French should finally be available by the end of July. So far, negotiations have only taken place orally. If the deal goes through, Lotus may be better off financially than Williams. They can only hope that the costs will be reduced and that the income will be distributed more fairly.

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