Category: Teams

Top-end F1 teams have access to the best of everything, including proven drivers, who often come at a hefty cost. 

Teams at the other end of the field need to manage their budgets to extract the best from the team over a season and one option is to have a driver pay for the opportunity to drive the car as opposed to being paid. 

Paid drivers are common in the feeder series, F3 and F2, but not completely seen in F1. Some may argue that a paid driver has not necessarily earnt his seat, but these drivers need to have a super license that has a list of requirements including a minimum points haul from feeder categories over a set period.

A number of very successful drivers started on the F1 grid as paid drivers, none less so than Michael Schumacker who, in 1991, was funded into a seat with Jordan for the Belgian GP. The fee was $150,000.00 for a one-race deal. 

It could be said that Lance Stroll is the ultimate example with his seat at Aston Martin where his dad owns the team…

Michael Schumacher, Jordan 1991
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Andrew Burden

The author Kiwi F1 Fan

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