F1 has a certain boisterous confidence as a sport. For whatever reason, we seem to see ourselves as somewhat insulated from the world at large. It's odd, because if anything I think F1 is a microcosm of the wider world. The paddock is a mini tower of Babel comprised of people from all over the world, and we spend our year travelling through cultures and climates both geographic and political. Because of the need for sponsorship, we're intertwined with the world of business - we ebb and flow as the world economy does. And because so many of our races depend on political support, we fall in and out of favour as often as governments do.
Every once in a while a prominent paddock person will raise their head above the parapet and make a geopolitical comment, but the influence of the wider world on the sport itself doesn't garner as much attention as it should.
Since The Great Financial Crisis of 2008, F1 should have been on a belt-tightening spree. And while we've seen efforts towards cost-cutting in some areas, maybe - in hindsight - it wasn't the right time to push through the engine spec change. HRT, Marussia, and Caterham have all been financially hamstrung since their arrival in the paddock - the three teams applied for entries under one set of financial parameters, but by the time they started racing those budget caps had been eliminated.
It should surprise no one that one of the three teams has fallen, and that the other two have struggled to be competitive - this isn't what they signed up for, and they're playing a Sisyphean game of catch-up.
And while Caterham and Marussia are now in a much stronger position from a factory point of view, with upgrades to their facilities and specially headhunted staff to assist in their efforts to climb up the constructors' standings, both teams find themselves in the unenviable position of having to sacrifice experienced drivers for a guaranteed income.
One step forward, two steps back.
But it's not just tough at the back of the grid. As many as seven teams are rumoured to be floundering financially at the moment, which raises serious questions about the long term viability of the sport as a whole. This year the financial model will be changing for the teams, who will now see 63 percent of F1's profits, but how many of the teams we see in Melbourne will be lining up under the same branding come 2014?
After all, even race winning teams are struggling to secure new sponsorship deals at the moment, even if the sport as a whole just got a boost from Emirates. Last week's reports that global TV audiences look to be on the wane won't be helping matters any, while the gradual move to subscription-only coverage is only going to further reduce viewing figures.
The new sponsorship deals that are being signed involve a lot less money than they used to. And despite the Resource Restriction Agreement, F1's not really getting much cheaper.
Even the cancelled TBA race scheduled for 21 July is going to have had a negative impact on the teams' incomes. Whatever money they save by not trekking out there is lost when sponsorship deals based on exposure across a 20-race season need to be redrafted to accommodate the lost grand prix.
For far too long, Formula One has buried its head in the sand, considered itself immune from the harsh winds blowing all around. But with the long-term big-money deals now coming up for expiry, there's no denying that the sport is hardly in a position of strength.
Unless serious changes are made to the sport's financial model, from the cost of hosting a grand prix to the budget needed to run a team - even to the expense of following the sport as a fan, both trackside and at home - Formula One runs a severe risk of being the agent of its own downfall.