Virgin gives Nick Wirth the Boot

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Just noticed this on the news tracker, Nick Wirth has been fired by Virgin after a pretty rotten start to the season. This also includes severing ties with Wirth Research. Interesting comments in this article about some sort of technical link up with McLaren - as Force India has (had?).

http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/91924
 

sushifiesta

Champion Elect
Contributor
Interesting - the article seems to present Wirth Research and Marussia Virgin Racing as two separate entities, which I wasn't aware was the case (e.g. it mentions that they will now be looking for a new base).

I don't think any of the new teams have really made the big leaps forward that they/the fans were hoping for. Lotus will get there sooner or later with Gascoyne in charge and sound financial backing from Fernandes and I hope Virgin can survive and drag themselves into the midfield as well.
 

MCLS

Anti F1 fan
Valued Member
Can't say I don't blame them, no doubt this decision has been influenced by the progress by Team Lotus
 

Mryzyz

Rookie
The problem with Virgin is their budget. Apparently it's only about £40M.
A team with Ross Brawn, Adrian Newy, Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and a £40M budget is a bottom 3 team.
 

F1Yorkshire

Avatar for sale to the highest bidder
Contributor
The McLaren link up does sound interesting. If the Woking boys do start producing their own engines for 2013 and beyond they will want other teams to have the engines onboard their cars.
It's also good to see them finally planning to use wind tunnels too. As every CAD Monkey knows, what works on a PC does not always work in production!
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
It's a results business; Wirth said he could do the job with the budget available, and clearly failed to do so.
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
Virgin finally catch on to the idea of wind tunnels! horrah! If you ask me if Branson has put his name on it he should put some money behind it.

The Mclaren thing is interesting but not suprising to me - Force India seemed to have become Merc's little sister team which has left the Macers without one. Think we should expect Gary Paffett to turn up at Virgin next year and Timo Glock to suddenly be on best behaviour.
 

FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Aren't Marussia are now the money behind the "Virgin" team so beardy Branson is just a sponsor now. Not sure how many oligarcs there are on the board of Marussia, pretty cars though http://www.marussiamotors.ru/en/

Me, I think they should have stuck with Wirth but made him do some wind tunnel testing just to prove to him that his reliance on CFD was foolish. It woudl have made the whole of Wirth Research a better company. The whole team now has to rebuild their technical side and that could be disasterous.
 

Grizzly

Bear
Contributor
A team with Ross Brawn, Adrian Newy, Lewis Hamilton, Fernando Alonso and a £40M budget is a bottom 3 team.

Me, I think they should have stuck with Wirth but made him do some wind tunnel testing just to prove to him that his reliance on CFD was foolish.

Says it all IMO. They need to rethink the £40m budget, and they need a tunnel.

(Beardy Branson has been hell bent on sticking to the suggested £40m idea that went round...)
 

Galahad

Not a Moderator
Valued Member
With Symonds involved they should make more progress now. They might not get on the podium for £40m, but I don't think the budget justifies them being as slow as they are, or anything like it.
 

RasputinLives

Leave me alone I'm on Smoko
Contributor
I think the worrying thing for Virgin must be how quickly the HRT's caught them. They had a reprieve at Monoco but lets not forget they've had a HRT in front of them on the grid for the 2 GPs before. Must have been a little bit of a shock to the system
 

Pyrope

Podium Finisher
Supporter
So Virign are now Wirthless, eh?

That Canadian flag is affecting your speech patterns now... ;)

As for Nick Wirth, he's always seemed a bit of a blowhard to me, ever since his Simtek days. His much vaunted Acura cars actually faced very little opposition in their title winning ALMS season, and whenever someone did roll out a Porsche Spyder it blew the Acuras into the weeds.
 

Theo_55

Rookie
Looks like the Marussia Virgin team tried to stick to Max Mosley's idea of all F1 teams being on a budget of £40 million, they came into F1 on Mosley's promises and dictats when he tried to force all teams into his financial clap trap.

Nick Wirth stuck to his brief in using CFD only, they did not have the money and the only thing Virgin about that team was it's name, apparently Branson did not put much money into the team, come to think of it, Branson has been very absent this season, I have not seen him in the paddock and there are no pictures of him on the Air Asia plane serving tea and coffee.
 

Slyboogy

World Champion
Contributor
I think this is a good move, they weren't going to get very far with CFD, maybe in 5-10 years time, and getting Pat Symonds in for next year must be a huge boost for them. This team looked promising last year, until the latter stage of the season. I am quite angry at Branson, he never was serious about owning a team, he could have at least put some money into the team properly the way Fernandes is doing.

All he was doing was to get his brand noticed, looks like his ploy failed.
 

cider_and_toast

Exulted Lord High Moderator of the Apex
Staff Member
Premium Contributor
to be honest I don't think any one would disagree that the only reason Virgin got the gig was because a) Nick Wirth was a friend of Max b) They were prepared to do the budget cap thing and c) they were prepared to sign the Cosworth engine deal. There were several bids on the table that seemed far better equipped to join the circus.

It is an interesting trend this year though that F1 teams seem to be following a football trend and booting key management and staff out of the door before the season end.
 

Fenderman

Rooters Reporter
All he was doing was to get his brand noticed, looks like his ploy failed.
I'm going to stick my neck out here:unsure: and defend Branson just a teeny, weeny bit (as I don't want to get banned). To be fair, the reasoning for having him on board was to attract other investors. He doesn't need to attract attention to his own brand as that is already huge. If anything I think he's treated his involvement in F1 as something of a hobby. For the young folk out there I offer you this bit of Branson history: He began to build his business empire in a Brighton phone booth in the late 1960's selling 45's and LP's (vinyl discs with holes in the middle and tracks of music etched into them. Quaint, really). Had I known then that the fellow hippy who kept me waiting for an interminable length of time to use the phone was to be a megarich entrepreneur, I'd have doffed my hat. Had I had one.:goodday:
 
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