Not since the world stared into the abyss of financial armageddon on the infamous week that coincided with the 2008 Japanese Grand Prix at Fuji, has a Formula 1 paddock's chatter been so downbeat about the future health of the sport.
While corporate guests partied on their yachts in the marina, and the glorious backdrop of the Yas Viceroy hotel delivered the image of a high-tech, billion-dollar sport being played out, the word 'crisis' was being murmured once again in corners of the teams' office units up and down the paddock.
The catalyst for this talk was nothing to do with rule changes, declining television audiences or F1's owners CVC taking more money out of the sport.
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