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Thread: ICS Costs

  1. #1
    Patrick Stephan step33T's Avatar
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    ICS Costs

    Some people have asked for the cost numbers that TSO put out last week. Here is the high level picture. The detail can be found at TSO.

    NOTE, these are IndyCar Series specific for an existing team, and gathered from various sources. Many of these numbers translate directly to the cost of racing in the CCWS, NHRA, or any of a myriad other series.

    If you started from scratch, you'd need to buy two more chassis and more spare parts (the reason why it's always better to buy someone out - to get all the "misc" at pennies on the dollar).

    This does not take into account economies of scale that would exist for multi-car teams. That is a real and significant cost saving for bigger teams.

    Item Count Per Unit Per Year Per Race (16races)
    Shop Rent 1 $100,000.00 $100,000.00 $6,250.00
    Monthly Misc Shop Costs 12 $20,000.00 $240,000.00 $15,000.00
    Crew 20 $90,000.00 $1,800,000.00 $112,500.00
    Tractor/Transporter/Maint 1 $100,000.00 $100,000.00 $6,250.00
    Engine Lease 1 $900,000.00 $900,000.00 $56,250.00
    Chassis 1 $350,000.00 $350,000.00 $21,875.00
    Road Course Kits 1 $75,000.00 $75,000.00 $4,687.50
    PI Systems 1 $75,000.00 $75,000.00 $4,687.50
    Chassis Parts/Maint/Damage 1 $750,000.00 $750,000.00 $46,875.00
    Tires 1 $180,000.00 $180,000.00 $11,250.00
    Per Event Expenses 20 $45,000.00 $900,000.00 $50,000.00

    Totals = $5,470,000.00 for the 2007 season, or $335,625.00 per race over 16 races. (In the per event numbers I have included some testing costs).

    Anyway, here are the numbers, so argue away.
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  2. #2
    Glad you brought this up Step.....good stuff. Now I have not seen the cost of the DP01, but is it that much cheaper than the current chassis of IndyCar. And if so....how? I mean the same manufacturer builds and IndyCar and if the car is truly built to race on ovals.....how come Panoz doesn't roll it out to IndyCar?

    It just doesn't make sense. If it was built by a totaly different manufacturer I could understand it, but the manufacturer builds for both series

  3. #3
    Reset your fuel,Go Go Go Z28's Avatar
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    I look at those figures, add in another chassis and I really don't know how much deeper you can expect to cut costs for a major league, technologically advanced racing team running 16 races including the Indianapolis 500. What's there is about the minimum amount of equipment, expenses and personnel it would take to field a team for every race. I mean the people who manufacture the equipment, chassis, engines, tires have a right to make a dollar on it, the travel and lodging for team members costs about the same for every team, some teams might owner their shop but otherwise that's what it costs to race.
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  4. #4
    A post based on facts...the "Third Rail" of Splitzville!!!


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    Insider Jakester's Avatar
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    Something the 'cheaper equipment' crowd needs to note. A very large part of a team's expenses have nothing to do with the cost of an engine lease or chassis cost.
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    Wow!

    I thought that maybe some of the smaller teams could get by on "only" $1 or $2 million per year....guess not.

    And to think that some people like to slam those who put forth this kind of money so we can enjoy the racing, as fans.

    I am a fan of anyone who makes that kind of commitment to the sport.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by SnakePitLounge
    Glad you brought this up Step.....good stuff. Now I have not seen the cost of the DP01, but is it that much cheaper than the current chassis of IndyCar. And if so....how? I mean the same manufacturer builds and IndyCar and if the car is truly built to race on ovals.....how come Panoz doesn't roll it out to IndyCar?

    It just doesn't make sense. If it was built by a totaly different manufacturer I could understand it, but the manufacturer builds for both series
    Well, for starters, Champcar solicited bids for one chassis maker to supply the entire field. Normally, the bid goes to the lowest bidder in those situations. When the current generation of IRL chassis was designed, back in 2003(?), I'm pretty certain I the league mandated the $350k cost per chassis to each builder. I'm sure some spare parts and attachments are probably not included in that cost. Point is, the $350k IRL chassis cost probably included more margin than the DP01 spec since it was mandated.

    Second, I once heard running Indy (month of May) is like running half a season. Full-time teams literally spend two weeks on the track, day after day. The tires and methanol, and the occasional shunt into the wall probably factors in more than just a 1/16th of a race season. Maybe the higher purses more than offset it, but ... just a thought.

    Third, the IRL continues to trudge down CART's fallen path. With each new non-oval, they make teams spend more and more on their RC packages. Ever notice how smaller IRL teams have opted to skip the RC's from time to time.

    Last, and this has a little more to do with the overall picture, the DP01 will launch at a cheaper price in its first year, than the IRL spec will cost in its 5th(?) year. Chances are the outlay next year will be the most any team has to pay during the DP01's lifetime and it will still be cheaper than a current IRL car. However many cars make the grid next year for Champcar, chances are good those counts will only go up year 2 and so forth.

    IMO, KK and GF used the Atlantics car as a business model to build the DP01 on. As wonderful as it has been to see 21-29 Atlantics cars starting each race, it would be unbelievable to see 29 Champcar cars take the checkers at Long Beach.
    "Don't believe the hype!"

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    Quote Originally Posted by mesquite
    IMO, KK and GF used the Atlantics car as a business model to build the DP01 on. As wonderful as it has been to see 21-29 Atlantics cars starting each race, it would be unbelievable to see 29 Champcar cars take the checkers at Long Beach.
    If they ever get back up to 29 starters that would be perfect for a big oval like California.

  9. #9
    Insider Jim Wilke's Avatar
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    With each new non-oval,
    The IRL added 3 'non-ovals' for 2005 and kept that number for 2006. How many new 'non-ovals' will be added next year - and why does it cost the teams more to run 4 instead of 3? All the CC fans around here tell us that roads are cheaper than ovals so once you have your r/c kit, who cares how many races you use it?

  10. #10
    I think one of the biggest things to take out of that cost break down is that most of the costs are due to personnel and support equipment...things you have to have regardless of what equipment (chassis or engine) you are using. So, I fail to see how a brand-new chassis that may cost a little bit less will suddenly make teams healthy. For one, looking only at the initial sale of a new tub and ignoring all the accessories so to speak is dumb. Teams will also have to buy all new spare parts for their shiny new chassis for the season as none of what they have on hand will fit. At any rate, if it costs you 5.4 million to run and you are having serious issues getting anywhere close to that funding level, I find it hard to believe that a new program that being generous may save a 100k or so will suddenly cure all the financial issues the team has. Not saying it isn't great that they could save some money, but 100k, or even 200k savings when you need at least 5 million won't make you healthy. What will make your team, and the series healthy is finding a way to give the sponsors the ROI for them to pay teams that 5+ million. And sorry, can't see how a new chassis increases a sponsors ROI. Something more needs to be done to seriously turn things around.

  11. #11
    Revealer Of Truths NoSoupForYou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SnakePitLounge
    Glad you brought this up Step.....good stuff. Now I have not seen the cost of the DP01, but is it that much cheaper than the current chassis of IndyCar. And if so....how? I mean the same manufacturer builds and IndyCar and if the car is truly built to race on ovals.....how come Panoz doesn't roll it out to IndyCar?
    These are the prices according to the CCWS Audio Rountable from San Jose:
    Lola (Current)
    Tub 100,000
    Nose 33,000
    Sidepods 16,000
    Oil Cooler 12,000
    Gearbox 109,000
    Underbody 42,000

    DP01
    Tub 55,000
    Nose 16,000
    Sidepods 7,500
    Oil Cooler 4,700
    Gearbox 45,000
    Underbody 13,500

    One note they mention was that Walker's been through 16 noses in the last few months for a total cost of $528,000.
    "Fear is exciting for me" - Ayrton Senna

  12. #12
    Good post soup.
    That is why Gelles is joining and Perot is looking as well as some others.

    That kind of savings will pave the way to open doors and possibilites, add in %50 savings in ongoing replacement parts and it looks even better. Throw in a measely $650K for an engine lease and go race.

    Sounds good to me. One thought I had is rinky-dink/cost savings but then again I remember who's building these cars, Panoz/Elan and they know their stuff.

    And looking at the noses, if this were a Panoz it would have saved then a QUARTER of a million dollars just in the noses.

    I think that savings margin is excellent - its about time. A car adjusted and built for todays OW ecconomic enviroment.
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  13. #13
    Revealer Of Truths NoSoupForYou's Avatar
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    I've read articles that put the costs of running CCWS team as low as $2M per car (e.g. Coyne?) , but as high as $5M per car for a highly competitive team (e.g. NHR).

    I thought the Cosworth lease was cheaper than the Honda, but I have not found any evidence to back this up. Maybe if I call up KK and say I'm interested in starting a team, he'll give me some details!

  14. #14
    Revealer Of Truths NoSoupForYou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Canth
    ... Not saying it isn't great that they could save some money, but 100k, or even 200k savings when you need at least 5 million won't make you healthy. What will make your team, and the series healthy is finding a way to give the sponsors the ROI for them to pay teams that 5+ million. And sorry, can't see how a new chassis increases a sponsors ROI. Something more needs to be done to seriously turn things around.
    Valid points. For the most part, the teams will realize enough cost savings in pieces and parts to cover the costs of the new chassis. The benefit to the series is from new teams. There has already been 1 Atlantic team committed, 1 more Atlantic team 90% committed, and another, I believe seriously considering it. There's talk of several outside new teams also expressing interest. There's also the Atlantics Champion that could move up (either a new team or existing team). Now, if (key part of the argument) any of these result in new teams, and the car count grows, that could be the seed. Interest grows, exposure grows, and therefore sponsors see more value in their investment.

    That's the plan, anyway. Only time will tell if it works.


    (and I didn't even mention the impending defection of Ganassi, RLR, and Penske )

  15. #15
    Paradoxically Sublime Fool Turn13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mesquite
    Second, I once heard running Indy (month of May) is like running half a season. Full-time teams literally spend two weeks on the track, day after day. The tires and methanol, and the occasional shunt into the wall probably factors in more than just a 1/16th of a race season. Maybe the higher purses more than offset it, but ...
    The higher purses, yes, but how about the higher ratings, too? That's probably more ROI than an entire CCWWS season, counting ratings, press / media attention, PR opportunities, and all the daily programming / Sportscenter stuff / Qualifications.
    "Each day well lived makes every yesterday a dream of happiness and every tomorrow a vision of hope. Look well therefore to this one day for it, and it alone, is life"
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    Paradoxically Sublime Fool Turn13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by NoSoupForYou
    I thought the Cosworth lease was cheaper than the Honda, but I have not found any evidence to back this up. Maybe if I call up KK and say I'm interested in starting a team, he'll give me some details!
    Does it matter how cheap it is if there is no comparable return on that investment? KK had probably better keep putting $$ into TV buys if he wants to attract serious, professional teams.

    btw - I'm pleased to announce TF's 365-day attendance figure is 750,000 . That may or may not be a wild exaggeration

  17. #17
    Amalgamated JBaiza's Avatar
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    I did a graph based on Step's numbers to help see where the money is going.
    Since this is Track Forum, rather than a pie chart I did a donut chart.

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  18. #18
    Amalgamated JBaiza's Avatar
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    Look at it this way, if an IRL chassis was free, it would still be over $5 million for a single car team to run a season.

  19. #19
    Quote Originally Posted by NoSoupForYou
    I thought the Cosworth lease was cheaper than the Honda, but I have not found any evidence to back this up. Maybe if I call up KK and say I'm interested in starting a team, he'll give me some details!
    Details?..he might just give you an engine.

  20. #20
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    Sad to see we've fallen this far in OW.
    A budget spec chassis comes out to go with the old spec motor.
    I wonder if the rear view mirrors will still be open to modifications......

    I'm not trying to pick a fight here, just remembering what life was like in the good old days.....

  21. #21
    Quote Originally Posted by NoSoupForYou
    One note they mention was that Walker's been through 16 noses in the last few months for a total cost of $528,000.
    perhaps they should consider the cockpit spacer's that keep wrecking these noses

    and perhaps the series should consider this as well and take appropriate action

    compare the typical CC carnage with the IndyCar guys and gal on road courses and street courses ... don't remember any first lap shamozzles in IRL nor many nosejobs etc

    CC on other hand goes thru a few dozen noses it seems some weekends, and I believe has had a FC yellow at almost every street race (and others like CLE etc) in the first lap or few

    tthis isn't in any way a partisan attack - simply pointing out real world

    whatever CC is doing for penalties etc is obviously having virtually no effect

  22. #22
    Rocketdoc
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jakester
    Something the 'cheaper equipment' crowd needs to note. A very large part of a team's expenses have nothing to do with the cost of an engine lease or chassis cost.

    37% is not an insignificasnt number.

    Drop that number by only half of the savings of let's say the transmission diffenece: which is, incidently 37% of the former cost, you're talking large reductions in team costs.
    Claude

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by cleanupcrew
    perhaps they should consider the cockpit spacer's that keep wrecking these noses

    and perhaps the series should consider this as well and take appropriate action

    compare the typical CC carnage with the IndyCar guys and gal on road courses and street courses ... don't remember any first lap shamozzles in IRL nor many nosejobs etc

    CC on other hand goes thru a few dozen noses it seems some weekends, and I believe has had a FC yellow at almost every street race (and others like CLE etc) in the first lap or few

    tthis isn't in any way a partisan attack - simply pointing out real world

    whatever CC is doing for penalties etc is obviously having virtually no effect

    Perhaps they should consider the cockpit's occupant....

    That's almost as many "noses" as Michael Jackson has had.

  24. #24
    Quote Originally Posted by OkThen
    Good post soup.
    That is why Gelles is joining and Perot is looking as well as some others.

    That kind of savings will pave the way to open doors and possibilites, add in %50 savings in ongoing replacement parts and it looks even better. Throw in a measely $650K for an engine lease and go race.

    Sounds good to me. One thought I had is rinky-dink/cost savings but then again I remember who's building these cars, Panoz/Elan and they know their stuff.

    And looking at the noses, if this were a Panoz it would have saved then a QUARTER of a million dollars just in the noses.

    I think that savings margin is excellent - its about time. A car adjusted and built for todays OW ecconomic enviroment.
    I love it when people make up their own math

    so they are gonna save all this money right?

    how much do they have to SPEND first?

    just the parts listed are $150,000 - and they are nowhere near a complete race ready car - add suspension, brakes, hubs, shafts, wiring, exhausts, steerin and steering wheel, shocks, wheels etc etc - total costs of a turn key car has to be at least $275,000 each

    add a backup chassis and a minimal spares package and you're spending at least $750,000 and more likely closer to $1 million for a 1 car team

    please explain to us how saving $15,000 on a nose means anything when you have to spend $750k to $1 million to even get there?

    I also seriosuly question - especially if soneone is relying on the Gang of 4 and their audio roundtable for facts - that a CURRENT Lola tub costs any where near $100,000 - or any of the other parts cost anywhere near those prices

    if they are then someone is getting ripped off - the engineering and R&D and tooling were fully amortized years ago on the Lola's

    KK should have simply bought the rights to the Lola along with tooling and built new parts and cars - the cost would have been a lot less than the prices claimed - and should have been very similar to the alleged DPO1 prices

    and that way teams would have had the CHOICE to keep upgrading their existing cars

    as it is every team will have to spend at minimum close to a million to race the first race next year - and then add a bunch of testing expense, since you cannot show up at a race with a brand new chassis you have no experience with

    I estimate an 18 car field, with backups and spares, will cost appx $15 million in order for the series to turn a wheel next year

    where is the money gonna come from?

    and how many noses do they have to go thru to make that back in savings?

  25. #25
    Quote Originally Posted by rocketdoc
    Perhaps they should consider the cockpit's occupant....

    That's almost as many "noses" as Michael Jackson has had.
    "cockpit spacer's"

    we agree ....

    except I think the series is as much to blame for not putting a stop to it

  26. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by cleanupcrew

    so they are gonna save all this money right?
    In the short and long term, yes. Just ask Gelles and why he commited two cars next year.

    how much do they have to SPEND first?
    Its called an investment.

    just the parts listed are $150,000 - and they are nowhere near a complete race ready car - add suspension, brakes, hubs, shafts, wiring, exhausts, steerin and steering wheel, shocks, wheels etc etc - total costs of a turn key car has to be at least $275,000 each
    Thats a SAVINGS.

    add a backup chassis and a minimal spares package and you're spending at least $750,000 and more likely closer to $1 million for a 1 car team
    In your "750k" example. $150,000 less then the total for a Honda engine lease, go figure.

    please explain to us how saving $15,000 on a nose means anything when you have to spend $750k to $1 million to even get there?
    Call it an investment. Ask Gelles Racing and others that are looking in Cuc.

    I also seriosuly question - especially if soneone is relying on the Gang of 4 and their audio roundtable for facts - that a CURRENT Lola tub costs any where near $100,000 - or any of the other parts cost anywhere near those prices

    if they are then someone is getting ripped off - the engineering and R&D and tooling were fully amortized years ago on the Lola's
    "Ripped off", I dont even need to go on.

    KK should have simply bought the rights to the Lola along with tooling and built new parts and cars - the cost would have been a lot less than the prices claimed - and should have been very similar to the alleged DPO1 prices
    Eight manufactures bidded, Lola lost, Panoz won, why do you think that is?

    and that way teams would have had the CHOICE to keep upgrading their existing cars
    And to hear the endless bellyaching how the cars are long in the tooth, old, breaking down, parts failures and band-aided back to health? Right. As Panoz said, this is the OW car of tommorow. Not a band-aid kit.

    as it is every team will have to spend at minimum close to a million to race the first race next year - and then add a bunch of testing expense, since you cannot show up at a race with a brand new chassis you have no experience with
    Kevin has a lot of money and a line of credit. Minimum one million my a**. Kevin will cover the testing expense. Why do you keep wishing or projecting this BS on CC? You damn well know that with the new car that Kevin isn't going to say, "Heres your new car, good luck dudes, test and have fun and dont let the leather on your wallets get dried out while its open!"


    I estimate an 18 car field, with backups and spares, will cost appx $15 million in order for the series to turn a wheel next year
    I'll put money down to Brians Wish and the Hole in the Wall that you are wrong.

    where is the money gonna come from?
    Think of Kevin as Bernie, dont worrie about it, the money is no problem-o. Slap a down and make payments. No big deal.

    and how many noses do they have to go thru to make that back in savings?
    In Walkers example, they would have saved, or WILL save a QUARTER of a MILLION DOLLARS. Thats the savings.......... just in nose cones alone.

  27. #27
    Quote Originally Posted by OkThen
    In Walkers example, they would have saved, or WILL save a QUARTER of a MILLION DOLLARS. Thats the savings.......... just in nose cones alone.
    most of that drivel not worth responding to ... but last one is same as above

    I'll repeat - every team will have to SPEND something approaching a million dollars - in hard equipment costs (not including any money for operations or overhead) - for EACH driver they enter next season

    and again - any team that is buying 16 nose assemblies for a single driver in less than a season needs to be looking at and concerned about something other than parts costs ....

    the rest of your post was mostly just your largely irrelevant and incoherent blather - ie: what does the costs of the CC chassis have to do in any way with an IRL engine lease ....

  28. #28
    Quote Originally Posted by cleanupcrew

    I'll repeat - every team will have to SPEND something approaching a million dollars - in hard equipment costs (not including any money for operations or overhead) - for EACH driver they enter next season
    Thats an investment. Ask Gelles why he's flushing dollars down the toilet.

    and again - any team that is buying 16 nose assemblies for a single driver in less than a season needs to be looking at and concerned about something other than parts costs ....
    Briscoe comes to mind. Who said its "16" for a single driver? Nobody. Thats Will and Tags combined.

    the rest of your post was mostly just your largely irrelevant and incoherent blather - ie: what does the costs of the CC chassis have to do in any way with an IRL engine lease ....
    Of course its just irrelevant and incoherent. Thats because your not seeing the savings in noses, with the old and the new and the difference between a Honda and Cossworth engine lease, which is dang well close.

    Since the topic is affordibilty, is there any confirmation or intent for IPS teams to move up, providing the stronghold for grid increases? CC/TA has two more on the burner and that excludes Gelles. Is it the car or the direction of the series CuC?

  29. #29
    Revealer Of Truths NoSoupForYou's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cleanupcrew
    I love it when people make up their own math

    so they are gonna save all this money right?

    how much do they have to SPEND first?

    just the parts listed are $150,000 - and they are nowhere near a complete race ready car - add suspension, brakes, hubs, shafts, wiring, exhausts, steerin and steering wheel, shocks, wheels etc etc - total costs of a turn key car has to be at least $275,000 each
    Yeah, I always get suspicious when my wife starts off a conversation with "I saved a bunch of money shopping today"

    I've seen/heard the figure $295K tossed about for the DP01, but don't know if that is for a roller. Sounds like it based on those numbers above.

    And if the $750K in the original post for spares is the yearly budget for an IRL team and a CC budget is similar, then the numbers I pulled out of thin air for this post in the "It's Real" thread actually make sense. It demonstrates (in principle) how the transition can be made without a large financial impact.

    Here's speculative details. I only listed a single gearbox, since each roller should have one already:

    Rollers 2 x $295,000 = 590,000
    Nose 4 x 16,000 = 64,000
    Sidepods 4 x 7,500 = 30,000
    Gearbox 1 x 45,000 = 45,000
    Underbody 4 x 13,500 = 54,000
    Total $783,000

    Total first year budget increase: $33,000. Add in more spares and the price will go up some, but factor in that the following year's budget will free up nearly $600K since you won't need (hopefully) 2 more rollers. So if you want to add in a couple of tubs, more noses, underbodies, and some wings, the first year budget hit will be a couple hundred thousand, but if you look at a 2-year budget of 1.5 mill, then you are probably looking at a total decrease of a couple hundred thousand.

    Look, this is all speculative. I don't think the teams will need millions of dollars. It's just looking at this with an optimistic view. If this all fails miserably, then the naysayers can smile smugly and go back to watching the IRL. If they dislike CC so much, I'm curious as to why so much commotion is being made over CC's attempts to evovle.
    Last edited by NoSoupForYou; 08-02-2006 at 10:24 AM.

  30. #30
    Something the 'cheaper equipment' crowd needs to note. A very large part of a team's expenses have nothing to do with the cost of an engine lease or chassis cost.
    If that is true then i wonder why a 2 car-team in gp2 can be run for 2.5 million euro (+-$ 3 million). That is a very professional serie with a 600 hp car and 11 events per year.

    linkie and search for the "Wir sind zur Zeit 20 Leute und operieren in der GP2 mit einem Etat von 2,5 Millionen Euro."-part.

    As for the numbers, looking at it from a per race number some seem very high.
    * per event expenses : $50.000: What are these expenses?
    * crew: $112,500: That's a lot of money on a crew per race. And 33% of costs per race. Seems very high to me.
    * engine lease: $56.000: One could almost buy a AER 2.0 turbo with 550 hp and 3-5.000 km life span for that money.

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