Following his tangle with Felipe Massa during the closing stages of the Japanese Grand Prix, Scuderia Toro Rosso driver Sebastien Bourdais has been given a 25s penalty.
The school pupil’s lap times in his 60cc model, which can hit speeds of more than 50mph, are quick enough to qualify for competitive racing – although he will have to wait another four years before he is old enough to officially compete. In the meantime, a consortium of sponsors has already recognised his rare talent and backed him with $30,000.
As the global economic crisis deepens, Formula One is starting to feel the pinch. The sport’s lavish image is in stark contrast to the belt-tightening going on in the outside world. Many in F1 are well aware that the sport will have to make changes to how it does business to ensure it emerges from the credit crunch mostly intact.