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Why do top teams pay so much to their drivers?

Discussion in 'F1' started by ferrariforevervp, Jul 14, 2019.

  1. jpalmito

    jpalmito Formula Junior

    Jun 5, 2009
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    Le caylar (France)
    Prost in 1986 against two utterly dominants Williams Honda is the best example i would say .
     
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  2. Mark(study)

    Mark(study) F1 Veteran
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    Getting the last .001 out of a car is the most expensive part when it comes to paying a driver like Lewis that shows he can do it in the majority of races over the last 4 years.
     
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  3. Flavio_C

    Flavio_C Formula Junior

    Sep 7, 2012
    930
    True, by as far as I know (I was not grown up during that year :D), during 1986 it was a mismanaged seaon for Williams in the sense that Frank was recovering from his accident and that Piquet and Mansell were fighting with each other.
     
  4. william

    william F1 World Champ

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    Frank Williams didn't want to give team orders to his drivers.
    Piquet and Mansell, who hated each other, fought all season and split the points.
    Prost who had not such a good car capitalised on this rivalry and kept scoring points, to end up WDC that year.
     
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  5. Flavio_C

    Flavio_C Formula Junior

    Sep 7, 2012
    930
    Thanks for the clarification!
     
  6. Ferrari 308 GTB

    Ferrari 308 GTB F1 Veteran

    Feb 21, 2015
    5,379
    Premier League guys get Stg 10-20 mio for kicking a football around. yep they really are overpaid.In USA i guess your stars get even more right?

    Yes F1 is pretty safe nowadays, even so i think they deserve what they earn,all 22 of them.
     
  7. BMW.SauberF1Team

    BMW.SauberF1Team F1 World Champ

    Dec 4, 2004
    12,168
    Reminds me of a quote Shaq said regarding his pay when he played. "I'm not rich, the guy who writes my check is rich." Same thing here in F1. Driver salaries are a drop in the bucket to the total value a team gains by being in F1. For Mercedes it's more than just a championship and points and whatever money they get from Liberty...
     
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  8. dmundy

    dmundy Formula 3
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    That last lap at silverstone was utterly stunning.
     
  9. SimCity3

    SimCity3 Formula Junior

    The salaries are BS. Yes we all know about "the market" .
    I had this conversation with Bernie over 15 years ago. If you capped wages at £100K per race - guess what - they would all still turn up as they love driving F1 cars.

    What else could they do for £1.8m per year, plus benefits ?
     
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  10. DeSoto

    DeSoto F1 Veteran

    Nov 26, 2003
    5,685
    Indeed.

    Also, most drivers barely know to talk: they´ve driving since kids, they don´t know to do other thing. At some point someone should tell them to stick their heads out of their a**** and return to reality. Hopefuly, earning less would make them stop behaving like divas.
     
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  11. ferrariforevervp

    Sep 22, 2006
    25
    #36 ferrariforevervp, Jul 24, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019
    I respect everyone's opinions. But maybe my point wasn't very clear.
    In my opinion a salary (in any profession) all depends on the bargaining power.

    I see people comparing F1 drivers with football, basketball players. In my opinion they are very different as the performance and the result of the game depends maybe 80% on the quality of the players, 20% on the quality of the coach, physiotherapists etc.

    But the F1 race result depends maybe 80% on the car / strategy / team, 20% on the driver quality.

    In recent years, as Mercedes is the dominant team, the drivers should be begging to get a seat there if they want to win. So if I were Mercecdes, I would set the salary to $1. Still many drivers should like to go there and get a chance to win. And I really think the top 10 drivers of the field driving a Mercedes should end up first or second. If the car is that dominant, you don't need the best of the best to get the last 0.001 sec out of it.

    Of course the situation would be different if the difference between the cars is smaller.

    Besides Mercedes, only Ferrari and Red Bull make a chance for the win. Why would they need to pay the high salary, is Ferrari afraid that Vettel goes to another team? I think Ferrari shouldn't be afraid. If Vettel goes to Red Bulls, he might loose to Verstappen and further damage his image. If he goes to Mercedes, he might loose to Hamilton and further damage his image. And these IFs might happen only when there is a spot available at these two teams, which is not the case at the moment. If Vettel goes to another lower ranking team, Ferrari shouldn't be worried at all.
    The same reasoning holds for is Mercedes afraid that Hamilton goes to another team, or is Red bull afraid that Verstappen goes to another team.

    So in my opinion the bargaining power at the top teams is entirely at the team, not at the driver, as the team provides the winning car and can determine which driver can get the possibility to win races with the team.

    I understand that in the past there are years that a driver wins the championship not in the fastest car, but that really is a minority statistically (you can check the f1metrics statistics). This highlights again that the car is the most dominant factor, not the driver.

    Hypothetically one might ask what would Hamilton do if Mercedes decides to pay him 1$ a year? Nothing, if Hamilton wants to win another championship soon.
     
  12. ferrariforevervp

    Sep 22, 2006
    25
    #37 ferrariforevervp, Jul 24, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 24, 2019
    Also I'm not speculating whether the drivers deserved to be paid this much because they are risking their life etc. Nor do I have any problem that they are paid this much as it's not my money at all.

    I'm purely curious about the reasoning behind their high salary from a demand and supply and bargaining power point of view, as I think a team can better spend the money in improving the cars.
     
  13. DeSoto

    DeSoto F1 Veteran

    Nov 26, 2003
    5,685
    If Elkann is smart, and I think he is, he´ll make Vettel drive for peanuts; maybe a low salary and bonus for results if he feels generous. Vettel´s stock is sinking, he´s getting older and right now it´s not probable that another good seat will get available.

    If he wants money, he always can get a decent check from a midfielder looking for TV coverage and sponsors, just because an old champion always brings some attention.
     
  14. william

    william F1 World Champ

    Jun 3, 2006
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    "If you pay peanuts, you get monkeys to do the job".
     
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  15. william

    william F1 World Champ

    Jun 3, 2006
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    You are in another world.
    No self-respecting driver would accept a seat for just 1$ a year.
    Why ?
    Because the price tag beside a driver's name is a recognition of his market value.
    If you offer a talented driver a low wage, well below his market value, you insult him.

    When Nelson Piquet didn't manage to get an increase from Bernie Ecclestone, even after he had won after 2 WDCs at Brabham, he just left.
    When Frank Williams refused to increase Nigel Mansell's retainer after he won the WDC, he just left, although he had the best car !
     
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  16. DeSoto

    DeSoto F1 Veteran

    Nov 26, 2003
    5,685
    Meh, drivers are always angry about something: because the car is not good, because his team mate doesn´t leave him pass, whatever. And of course they also get angry if they´re not paid enough. It´s the market, some say. Well, markets have bubbles, and the bubbles sooner or later burst.

    I could understand if they got paid a lot when this sport was risky, but now that´s safer than ever they get paid more: market is not always fair either. I´m not asking them to drive for free, but even if they got a 50% salary reduction, top drivers would be making 20 million per season. Come on, stop talking about "my money is my honour" and **** off!
     
  17. william

    william F1 World Champ

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    Don't you think the top teams would do it if that was possible?

    I can't understand why F1 drivers pay get so much attention when athlètes in other sports get much more.
     
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  18. P.Singhof

    P.Singhof F1 Rookie

    Apr 19, 2006
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    Peter Singhof
    Probably because it is a F1 forum??? Maybe football players salary get more attention in a football forum :rolleyes:
     
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  19. DeSoto

    DeSoto F1 Veteran

    Nov 26, 2003
    5,685
    Yeah, back in 2007 people was wasting money like if there was no future and then the economy collapsed. The market self-regulates, they said.

    And yes, football players get paid a lot too. But many football teams are living on loans. Coincidence? I guess not. Although at least they can recover a bit selling shirts.
     
  20. lorenzobandini

    lorenzobandini Formula 3
    Silver Subscribed

    I enjoy those that resent others that are paid $X ....'doesn't matter what "business" (and kid yourselves not, it's all business when discussing $$$).

    Very simple. Stop resenting...(aka "I think they're paid too much" for such and such reasons...)...and go do it.... ;)
     
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  21. pilotoCS

    pilotoCS Formula Junior
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    May 19, 2019
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    Wash DC
    Which is why I find discussions of athletes salaries boring.

    Although I do like this famous quote from former basketball player Shaquille O'Neal: When asked if he felt rich after signing a big contract, he said "I'm not rich. The guy signing my check is rich."
     
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  22. lorenzobandini

    lorenzobandini Formula 3
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    I take it a step further....anyone's income or assets. 'None of my business; nor mine their's....
    Important to me is the person's personality...not their things. ;)
     
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  23. DeSoto

    DeSoto F1 Veteran

    Nov 26, 2003
    5,685
    #48 DeSoto, Jul 25, 2019
    Last edited: Jul 25, 2019
    It´s not resentmet at all. Abusing of the anonimity of the internet, I admit that I earn too much ;). It´s not that I earn a lot, but I know that the product of my work is not so useful and can be done for less money. Just like Vettel, somehow I´m living on past success.

    Of course, if my boss asks I´m not going to admit that, just like if I were a driver I´d try to maximize the profits. It´s not fair, but the blame is not on the drivers, but on the one who doesn´t know how to spend his money.
     
  24. TonyL

    TonyL Formula 3

    Sep 27, 2007
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    Moreover their skill, all to often [some] drivers are promoted to F! on the backs of their Dad or who they know. Which kind of smacks who can afford it and what do / can they bring to the team. ie Money or sponsorship. Are they really the best of the bunch and worthy of a F1 seat? Some are but how many Sennas are out there today. I know of one, a taxi driver in Egypt, boy was he fast in a beat up Peugeot :)

    As an example I knew a guy who was very talented many years ago and was seen by Lotus scouts at a small Formula event in the UK. Colin Chapman gave the guy a call and asked him to come to a Lotus test, after the team had finished there work he was invited to give the car a few laps to see what he could do. After several trial runs he almost matched the No 1 driver lap time, incredible after his first stint in a F1 car. Chapman was impressed and asked him to come back the next day and resume and he would make another car available for him to do back to back tests.....he beat the no1 driver lap times and hounded him for much of the test. Chapman asked him if he could have overtaken him, he confidently said "yeah I was just playing with him"

    I was told they didn't tell the works driver his time had been smashed by a rookie. Asked what he could bring to the team he pointed to his head and then his hands......he never got back in a F1 car again.



    Tony
     
  25. 67bmer

    67bmer Formula Junior
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    Oct 28, 2015
    382
    MD
    In the hyper-competitive world of F1, if what you said was correct, they would already be doing it! It is glaringly obvious that for teams to win the manufacture's title, a very good #2 driver is required. The average does not work. If it did, they might even ask drivers to pay them.

    You don't think Perez would pay to drive the works Mercedes?
     

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