Howett reaffirms FOTA’s demands

FOTA vice-president and Toyota team principal John Howett has reaffirmed the teams’ commitment against the two-tier rule system this morning.

The teams last week all submitted entries to the 2010 championship on the condition that the FIA maintain the 2009 rules system. The FIA have said they intend to continue with their ideas for 2010, including an optional £40million budget cap, up to which new teams have signed. Although it is unclear how the two sides will resolve their differences, Howett said that FOTA was resolute.

“We believe that everybody has to compete under the same rules [but] I don t believe that anybody objects to new teams joining the series,” he said.

” I don t think, at the moment, that there is any discussion of a budget cap. A number of us feel that unless the actual conditions are satisfied then we have to seriously consider alternatives.”

FOTA’s decision to submit entries was seen in some quarters as a climbdown, but Howett’s comments make it clear that some teams will not participate in the 2010 championship if the £40m cap comes in.

His Toyota concern in particular are thought to want to resist a cap, or even to be seeking a way out of the sport, with the pretext being the FIA’s obduracy. Stringent technical penalties would result for the team if they did not observe the cap.