FIA tries to put cost-cutting efforts back on track
F1 will move to put cost-cutting efforts back on the agenda during a May 1 meeting.
Earlier, it was reported FIA president Jean Todt was considering new measures including reviving ‘active suspension’, after the new top team-dominated Strategy Group blocked his move to impose budget caps in 2015.
A meeting for 1 May has now been called. “Time is running out,” Monisha Kaltenborn, whose Sauber team ran into high-profile financial strife last year, is quoted by the German news agency DPA. “Actually, the time for this decision is long gone, but it’s never too late,” the Swiss team’s boss added.
F1’s smaller teams are angry that their more powerful rivals are thwarting moves to reduce spiralling costs, and reportedly threatening to challenge the Strategy Group against European competition laws. “It’s not about small or big teams,” insisted Force India chief Bob Fernley, “it’s about the future of formula one.”
World champion team Red Bull’s Christian Horner, however, insists the biggest teams are not opposed to reducing costs. “We need to identify the cost drivers and equalise the playing field for everyone,” he said. Horner argues, however, that a budget cap was not the right solution. “How would a budget limit of $200 million help Sauber? They wouldn’t save a single dollar,” he claimed.
A key meeting, to be presided over by Todt and Bernie Ecclestone, will now take place on May 1, between the Chinese and Spanish grand prix. “Hopefully we will find some solutions, and it’s not another of those meetings where we do not make a lot of progress,” Kaltenborn concluded.