Bernie Ecclestone says it is up to F1’s three engine suppliers to make the sport loud again.
“They made them quiet, now they can make them loud again,” the F1 chief executive said. After Melbourne race organisers slammed the new purring tones of the once-screaming sport after the 2014 season opener, Ecclestone vowed to get to work to fix a problem that could drive promoters, sponsors and fans away.
The 83-year-old put the onus of blame on the turbo V6 suppliers, Mercedes, Ferrari and Renault. “It’s a technical problem,” Ecclestone told the German newspaper Bild. “They have an obligation to give us formula one with volume.” He said Melbourne is not the only worried race promoter. “The organisers of the other races are also afraid now,” said Ecclestone. “They doubt they are going to sell enough tickets.”
However, one race promoter dismissed the Australians’ suggestion that F1 has breached contract by switching to such quiet engines. “There are no such clauses about minimum volume,” said the German federation ADAC’s Klaus Klotzner. “Quite the contrary, in fact.” Ecclestone, however, insisted what was offered up at Albert Park was not true F1. “Formula one — it’s glamour, and people love glamour, right up to the moment when the engines are started. Then the noise begins,” he said.
A source, however, said the F1 teams are too busy to consider the sound of their complex and revolutionary new engines as a priority. “At the moment, we’ve all got more on our plate than worrying about the noise,” the source told London’s Times newspaper.