Date: 12th December 2013 at 8:45am
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The FIA have announced that they have opened the tendering process for a new team to enter Formula One.

The Formula One paddock shrank to eleven teams after the former Hispania/HRT team dissolved at the end of the 2012 season.

It brought an end to the team after just two seasons and whilst Caterham and Marussia, who also entered F1 in 2011, appear to be doing well at the back end of the grid, they too have had financial issues and have previously held merger talks.

In fact financial problems are not just affecting the teams at the tail end of the grid, Sauber have struggled on and off for a number of years, whilst the Lotus team have seemingly struggled to bring in investment from the Quantum consortium and eventually had to concede and sign pay-driver Pastor Maldonado.

Unfortunately the poor financial state of Formula One has brought the sport to the point where many in the media would not be surprised if one or even several teams failed to make it through to the start of the new 2014 season in March next year.

It doesn’t appear to be a coincidence that teams started to talk about the prospect of three driver teams for next season during race weekends in Abu Dhabi and Brazil.

So the news of a possible ’12th team’ to enter the sport as early as 2014, can only be seen as good news for the sport.

However any potential new entrants do not have long to submit their application, with a deadline set of January 3rd, 2014 to register their interest with the FIA. At this point they would also have to pay an initial administration fee of $5,000.

If a suitable applicant is found then a decision will be announced as soon as February 28th, 2014.

However if none of the applicants are considered suitable by the FIA and the commercial rights holder then no additional team will be selected.

Teams have to prove their value through funding, the resources available to the team, technical ability, experience, human resources and what the addition of a new team will bring to Formula One.