As the Spyker F1 Team launched its 2007 challenger, the F8-VII, today, it was the perfect opportunity to sit down with Michiel Mol, director of Spyker F1 Team for an interview on how to manage the team.
"There were two sides to the decision. Firstly the change in the sporting regulations, which saw a shift in favour of the smaller teams with the engine freeze, limits on testing and the tyre stability, meant we could stand a good chance of competing and doing well. Secondly the redistribution of the TV income makes the sport now a very viable financial prospect for investors."You have a huge success rate in business, with your company, Lost Boys, listed on the Dutch and Swedish stock exchanges. How will your business acumen help Spyker?
"I see Spyker as a regular company, just like any of my other businesses. I run my companies in an open and transparent way and I treat sponsors and partners as customers. I’m going to apply this kind of business sense to Spyker F1 too. Besides it being a sport, I can see the huge business potential there for something to grow - financially this is a very good investment."The partnership between yourself, Victor and the team seems to be working well. How does the dynamic work?
"The dynamic does work well. Victor concentrates on the Spyker brand and the road car marketing and production, while I am responsible for the F1 team. Colin is the team principal and controls all the operations and movements at the factory, I make sure the communications, PR and marketing side is looked after and Spyker F1 is positioned in the right way. Between the three of us it works very well."Will we be seeing you at all races this year?
"I certainly aim to go to all the races, but you never know what might pop up at the last minute. Put it like this – I have booked my ticket to come to all 17 events! I want to be there in the thick of it, working with the sponsors, partners and media and open to any questions. I can tell you, I’ll always be available if I’m there!"Having a Dutch driver in a Dutch car certainly seems to have been well-received in Holland. How proud does that make you?
"I am certainly proud to be Dutch and in this situation, but the reaction at home has been even bigger than I expected. It’s all been positive, but I will only be really proud when we start achieving good results on and off the track. We’re going in the right way, but I want to make sure we do everything properly and then I can admire what we’ve done together."The team has had some changes of management recently – are you in F1 for the long run?
"Stability is the only way to get results. I’ve never done a deal to make a quick buck or for a short term project. To see results in this company you definitely have to look at it long-term. "Source Spykerf1