Time to say Goodbye: HRT

3 Feb

HRT, I can tell that’s not the name of a driver.

No it’s not it’s actually the name of a Formula 1 team (formerly Hispania Racing Team) launched in 2010.

So pretty short lived.

Very short lived, HRT have only competed in 3 seasons and only 58 races.

So why have they had to leave?

Financial problems saw the owners of the team searching for a new buyer, but when a new buyer couldn’t be found in time the team folded.

How did it all start?

To be honest it started much the way it ended, with the team desperately short of money, after making a successful bid under the name Campos Meta but from the start it was not plain sailing. Firstly the team was getting Italian company Dallara to build it’s chassis, but at a price of €7 million it wasn’t cheap and HRT’s inconsistent cash flow meant they couldn’t always pay on time. As well as this even before the car had taken to the track the team was bought out by Jose Ramon Carabante who renamed the team Hispania Racing Team. But the team did eventually manage to make it to the 2010 season opener in Bahrain only for both cars to fail to make it to the finish and their debut season was filled with retirements and finishes way off the points, the only thing that changed was the drivers, over their debut season HRT got through 4 drivers each new one taking the definition of slow to a new level. Despite the complete lack of speed HRT miraculously managed to finish 11th in the constructors championship.

That sounds a bit harsh, they couldn’t have actually been that slow.

They were, not only was it a rarity not to see both HRTs at the very back of the grid but come the race they were literally in a race of their own. In their second season HRT had a complete rehaul but sadly it would take more than new drivers to stop HRT propping up the grid, firstly they failed to qualify for the first race of the season and then yet again they failed to decide which driver line up they wanted, with Red Bull protege Daniel Ricciardo coming into the team mid season. But yet again they managed to finish 11th in the championship due to another miracle.

Surely they couldn’t have still been that bad in 2012.

You’d have thought now but someone forgot to tell HRT that yet again failing to qualify at the season opener and despite keeping the same driver line up throughout the season -shock horror- and even occasionally outqualifying Marussia they still couldn’t perform as well as they may have hoped and this time finished last in the constructors championship. As a result of this the team was put up for sale.

So what do you think ultimately caused the destruction of HRT?

When they started there was too much internal politics what with team completely changing hands before their first season even began, and then there was a complete lack of funding and of course they didn’t actually have a base since the chassis was made in Italy other major parts in Germany and the two headquarters in Spain. In short they gave a masterclass in how not to run an F1 team.

Is another team going to replace them?

As of yet no one has made a serious bid to join with the earliest chance of a team entering being for the start of the 2014 season, but if a new team was to enter they would have to get approval from the FIA and they may not be too keen after HRT’s failings.

So how do you rate HRT’s career?

1/10 I would probably have been happier if they didn’t race.


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