Formula 1
Formula 1
28 Mar
Event finished
R
Emilia Romagna GP
18 Apr
FP1 in
2 days
R
Portuguese GP
02 May
FP1 in
16 days
09 May
Next event in
21 days
23 May
Race in
39 days
R
Azerbaijan GP
06 Jun
Race in
53 days
13 Jun
Race in
60 days
27 Jun
Race in
74 days
04 Jul
Next event in
77 days
18 Jul
Race in
95 days
R
Hungarian GP
01 Aug
Race in
109 days
29 Aug
Race in
137 days
05 Sep
Race in
144 days
26 Sep
Race in
165 days
R
Singapore GP
03 Oct
Next event in
168 days
10 Oct
Race in
179 days
R
United States GP
24 Oct
Race in
193 days
31 Oct
Race in
200 days
R
Australian GP
21 Nov
Race in
221 days
R
Abu Dhabi GP
12 Dec
Race in
242 days

Force India very likely to change name pre-Australia

Force India says there is still a "high probability" it will change its team and chassis name before the start of the season in Australia.

Force India very likely to change name pre-Australia
Sahara Force India VJM11
Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India and Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 unveil the new Sahara Force India VJM11
Sahara Force India VJM11 nose and front wing detail
Andrew Green, Sahara Force India F1 Technical Director, Nikita Mazepin, Sahara Force India F1, Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1, Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India and Otmar Szafnauer, Sahara Force India Formula One Team Chief Operating Officer, the new Sahara Force India VJM11
Nikita Mazepin, Sahara Force India F1, Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1 and Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India
Esteban Ocon, Sahara Force India F1, Sergio Perez, Sahara Force India F1
Sahara Force India VJM11 front wing detail
Sahara Force India VJM11
Sahara Force India VJM11 halo detail

The Silverstone outfit has been working on a new identity since late last year, in the belief that its connections to India have compromised sponsorship opportunities, and that a more generic name would be beneficial.

However, the new VJM11 was launched in Barcelona on Monday under the Force India name, although there was evidence of reduced branding on team kit and around the garage.

COO Otmar Szafnauer is confident that the FIA and F1 will still accept a last-minute change before Melbourne.

"There's a high probability that it will happen before the first race of this year," he told Motorsport.com.

"We're still working on it, we still haven't quite pinpointed what the name change will be, but we always said there will be a name change coming.

"The deadline is coming close, and like anything, the closer you get to a deadline the harder you work to make sure it happens."

The process was slowed by 'cyber squatters' taking over potential domain names last year, and since then the team management has taken extra care to keep potential candidates under wraps, as well as ensuring that the new identity will have a long shelf life.

"It's one of those things that doesn't happen every day, so you've got to get it right, so you might as well take your time as opposed to doing it early – because it's going to be for a long time," added Szafnauer.

"There's a few stakeholders in this, the guys who own the place, potential sponsors in the future, FOM, so you've got to align all that before you pull the trigger.

"If it doesn't happen by Australia, there's always next year. It will be a good thing to do earlier rather than later, but like I said, getting it right is more important than the timing, because it's going to be there for a long time. I don't think you change your name every year.

"Everyone's got an opinion on it, and until we all come to the same opinion, you still kind of talk about it, and if there's no timing pressure, you still talk about."

Force India launched a well-sponsored car in Barcelona, but Szafnauer confirmed that the team is already talking to potential backers for 2019 whose involvement is dependent on the name change happening.

"We've had discussions with people who say, 'If you change the name, we're more interested – although not for this year.' That's why I say we've got to get it right, not for this year, but for next year.

"My preference is that we do it now. If it doesn't happen now, it's not detrimental. But if it doesn't happen at all, it could potentially be detrimental. It doesn't affect anything we're doing now."

shares
comments
Red Bull reveals definitive 2018 Formula 1 livery

Previous article

Red Bull reveals definitive 2018 Formula 1 livery

Next article

Video: Williams FW41's track debut from Kubica's POV

Video: Williams FW41's track debut from Kubica's POV
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Force India
Author Adam Cooper
The themes to watch in F1's Imola return Prime

The themes to watch in F1's Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Prime

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. Ben Anderson looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Prime

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says Nigel Roebuck.

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Prime

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now? Prime

Is Formula 1 as good as it has ever been now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Prime

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021
When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m Prime

When a journeyman driver's F1 career lasted just 800m

Nikita Mazepin’s Formula 1 debut at the Bahrain Grand Prix lasted mere corners before he wiped himself out in a shunt, but his financial backing affords him a full season. Back in 1993 though, Marco Apicella was an F1 driver for just 800m before a first corner fracas ended his career. Here’s the story of his very short time at motorsport’s pinnacle.

Formula 1
Apr 4, 2021
How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb Prime

How Raikkonen's rapid rise stalled his teammate's F1 career climb

Kimi Raikkonen's emergence as a Formula 1 star in his rookie campaign remains one of the legendary storylines from 2001, but his exploits had an unwanted impact on his Sauber teammate's own prospects. Twenty years on from his first F1 podium at the Brazilian GP, here's how Nick Heidfeld's career was chilled by the Iceman.

Formula 1
Apr 3, 2021