Racefan’s Ramblings

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V8 Cost containment gains momentum

Posted by Pat Kershaw on November 14, 2006

The ongoing V8 Supercar cost containment debate, the next generation extension to ‘Project Blueprint’ was announced recently.

Project blueprint is the governing bodies continuing efforts to provide parity between the marques. This is designed to ensure the team doing the best job, and the best driver, will rise to the top. In previous generations it was necessary to have the “Right” car. Take the Ford Sierra days! This is the way of the future, and it is successful in the Nascar universe, and has been with the V8’s.

the next stage is now underway, with the cars so even a small increase in performance comes at a horrendous cost. Catapillar just withdrew their sponsorship from a front running team, after apparently pouring in $10 million in a few years. The danger is always that the big teams get all the dollars, all the results, all the press, and leave the smaller fellows in a downward spiral of trying to keep their heads above water. It would not be the first series to price itself out of existence.

And so we had an announcement a few days ago about one of the new “control” components. These are ‘off-the-shelf’ parts you must use. mostly in areas such as brakes where teams invest millions in developing new and better technology. It helps to even the playing field. V8x carried this story in the past day…

Alcon to put the brakes on V8 Supercars in first cost containment measure

Media Release

The Touring Car Entrants Group (TEGA) today announced that the V8 Supercar Championship Series will utilise control brake components supplied by Alcon Components from the commencement of the 2007 Championship season.

It is the first in a series of cost containment measures to be rolled out in the coming months to ensure the long-term sustainability of the sport and its’ teams. This initial measure is expected to save more than $1 million each year for the Championship Series teams.

All V8 Supercars in the series will, following an implementation year in 2007, be required to use identical brake discs and calipers in Championship events from the commencement of the 2008 Championship.

In announcing the multi year arrangement, TEGA Chairman Kelvin O’Reilly said: “We have gone through an exhaustive process with the various brake component suppliers to the Championship teams over the past 10 months to arrive at the decision to appoint Alcon as our official brake component supplier.

“Alcon’s proposal was compelling in its commercial attractiveness and its technical merit. The discs and pads available to the Teams for 2007 are all current specification components that are in use on race winning cars and they will be available to the Teams at considerably lower prices than they currently pay.

“The original drive for control brakes came from the need to constrain the cost of competition in the Championship. We expect this decision to result in a saving across the Championship Teams approaching or exceeding $1 million in the first year.”

Alcon Managing Director Alistair Fergusson said the deal was a continuation of the long-term partnership between the company and several V8 Supercar Championship Series teams.

“Alcon has supplied brake and clutch components to the Championship over the past six years in a joint strategy with PWR Performance Products that has been designed to offer technically excellent brake and clutch products, backed by the highest level of service to competitors in the Championship,” said Alcon Managing Director Alistair Fergusson .

“The V8 Supercar Championship is a fabulously entertaining and competitive Series and I am delighted that we will be able to support TEGA and V8 Supercars Australia in ensuring that the Championship goes from strength to strength in the future.

Alcon Motorsport Sales Manager Andy Burton sees the new component supply agreement as the natural next step for the Alcon/PWR alliance.

“TEGA saw the need to contain the cost of competition and ensure full grids in the years ahead. Alcon and PWR have shown their commitment to the series over the past six years and we are very pleased that the TEGA Board has judged our proposal as being in the best interests of all competitors.”

PWR Performance Products Managing Director, Kees Weel commented: “V8 Supercars have sought cost containment for some time and I am delighted that PWR Performance Products in alliance with Alcon has been awarded this contract to deliver these savings. The best part is that teams all teams will not only save money, they will also have parts offering the same premium levels of safety and performance.”

The move to a control brake package does not however mean that all cars will have identical brakes. Throughout the term of the agreement, Alcon will offer a choice of front and rear pads thereby ensuring that different driving styles can be accommodated.

The first discs and calipers required for the 2007 season are already being manufactured and the first deliveries will be made in the New Year.

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