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Todt scraps plans for budget cap

2014-04-07 10:22

IT'S A NO: International Automobile Federation boss Jean Todt has said the governing body's plans to cap costs in 2015 have been scrapped because the richer teams voting against it. Image: AFP/Hasan Jamali

SAKHIR, Bahrain - Formula 1 has abandoned plans to impose a budget cap in 2015 but will try to reduce coststhrough regulation changes instead.

The governing International Automobile Federation announced in 2013 that, with some teams struggling financially, it planned to introduce a cost cap with an agreement scheduled for June 2014.

However federation president Jean Todt, speaking to reporters at the 2014 Bahrain GP, said leading teams had made it clear that they did not believe the initiative was viable.


Todt added: "I understand that all the (six) teams that are part of the strategy group are against the cost cap now. Clearly, if the commercial rights holder (Bernie Ecclestone) and six teams... are against, I cannot impose. It's mathematics. In this case, no more cost cap."

Under the new governance of the sport a strategy group that includes six leading teams - Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes, Williams, McLaren, Lotus - have six votes. Ecclestone's F1 management has six and so does the federation.

Todt said while at the first race he has attended in 2014: "In a way I am disappointed because it may be more difficult to achieve the reduction I feel is needed but everybody says we are all in favour of reducing cost and through regulations."

Force India deputy principal Bob Fernley, one of the five teams without a vote and a critic of the strategy group, was disappointed. He told reporters after his Mexican driver Sergio Perez finished third in Sunday's floodlit race: "That shows the frailty of the system. I think you need regulation to help but you also need cost control.

"We have to get the teams viable to sustain the sport."

Sauber and Lotus, the latter fourth in 2013, have yet to score a point in the new V6 turbo/hybrid era, had financial troubles in 2013.

Previous attempts to curb spending have failed with the sport split between big-spending companies such as Austrian energy drinks firm Red Bull and others who compete on a fraction of the big teams' budgets.

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2014 F1 season – fresh reports every day.

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