Ahead of the 2018 Formula 1 Belgian GP, the Sahara Force India team ceased to operate with Racing Point Force India being born.
It was an end of an era for the Silverstone-based team after the new consortium had to sought for a new constructor entry in F1. A lot went around in the last few weeks, here’s a list showcasing some important information with the old and the new Force India team:
- Sahara Force India were excluded from the constructors’ championship and forced to relinquish their points scored in the first half even though the drivers’ Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon kept theirs.
- New team entry of Racing Point Force India but constructor is still Force India as it cannot be changed mid-season but fresh points will be scored under the new team. The team becomes the 147th entry in F1 and first since Haas in 2016.
- The exact same thing has never happened before in F1 but similar things have like the Spyker buyout of Midland in 2006, the team name was changed to Spyker MF1 Racing (originally Midland F1 Racing). The constructor in that case remained the same and there was no championship exclusion. The Midland/Spyker team was later turned into Force India in 2008 as the first-ever Indian-licensed outfit in F1.
- Force India’s exclusion is the first since 2007 where a constructor McLaren was excluded from the championship due to ‘Spygate’.
- In recent times, Marussia did not finish the season after Russia in 2014 but then came back in 2015 as Manor and left completely after 2016. Caterham missed two races in 2014 too but did the last one. In 2008, Super Aguri only did the first four races before folding completely. There are plenty of other cases in earlier seasons where teams folded midway in the season. Force India were close to losing out as well.
- Going back in history, Footwork Grand Prix International team had two different constructors’ entries in 1991 as they started the season as Footwork-Porsche and ended as Footwork-Ford, but they scored no points as either entry.
- Coloni Racing did a similar thing in 1990 when they started the season with a Subaru engine and ended with a Ford – again with no points, with Life Racing Engines doing the same in that year as they started with their own engine but switched to a Judd
- Tyrrell Racing Organisation was the last team in 1985 to have two different constructors’ entries and they scored points with both. They started the season as one of the only naturally aspirated cars with Ford and had a massive power disadvantage before switching one of their two entries to a new car with a turbo Renault engine and running both side by side for four races, then switching both to Renault.
- The Force India team started its journey in 1991 as Jordan Grand Prix and changed hands to be Midland Racing in 2005 and 2006 but it was sold to Spyker midway in 2006 and ran as Spyker F1 until 2007 when it finally went to Force India/Sahara Force India between 2008 and 2018 Hungarian GP. With Racing Point Force India being a fresh entry, it thereby ended the team’s long reign from 1991 until 2018.
- The team under Force India completed 203 races (21,120 laps and 1,06,506 km) in its journey. Only 16 teams have had 200 plus races under their belt with Mercedes not featuring among them as they have only 181 races to their name.
- It gathered 1,046 points to be eighth in the all-time list – thanks to the new points system. Only eight teams have scored more than 1000 points in F1.
- It was one of the 39 teams to have scored a pole position in F1 with three front row starts and led in seven races with 65 laps. It was one of the 40 teams to secure a fastest lap as it scored five to be 20th in the all-time list.
- It was one of the 57 teams in F1 to score a podium as it stood 31st with six to its name.
- In a span of 11 years, only seven drivers raced for the team with Adrian Sutil, Giancarlo Fisichella, Paul di Resta, Nico Hulkenberg, Vitantonio Liuzzi, Sergio Perez and Esteban Ocon.