Ferrari say no to automatic 2010 entry

domenicali ferrari skiingevent 2009Ferrari insists that its special agreement with the FIA no longer stands in the context of the row over entry for the 2010 World Championship.

On Friday the FIA will publish the list of teams it will enter for the 2010 season. In opposition to the governing body’s proposed budget cap, eight of the eleven current teams submitted a conditional entry saying they will only enter the sport if the FIA agrees to scrap its budget cap and keep the rules as they are in 2009.

If a compromise is not reached between the FIA and the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) before Friday those teams could be left off the entry list, and on Wednesday FIA President Max Mosley wrote a letter to the teams urging them to sign up conditionally, stressing that that was the only way for them to influence the new rules.

The teams have held their ground as speculation grows about a possible break-away series.

In a further twist to the row it has been muted that Ferrari, who have led the protest against the FIA and threatened to quit the sport, could be included on the entry list, despite its opposition, due to a special agreement it signed with the FIA.

Several years ago Ferrari used its historical status in the sport to negotiate special protection rights, an increased share of the sport’s revenue, and a veto over technical regulations.

However, in a further sign of its commitment to the unity of the Formula One Teams Association, Ferrari insists that the agreement no longer stands and would not provide the FIA grounds to enter the team into next year automatically.

“Ferrari’s position has not changed,” Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali said. “Back on 29 May, we put in a conditional entry with the other teams that make up FOTA. Along with this entry, we put forward to the FIA a package of proposals which included among other elements, a significant reduction in costs.

“As always, we will do all we can to find a solution that is acceptable to all parties. If this is not possible, then the FIA will not be able to include Ferrari in the list of teams entered for the 2010 FIA Formula 1 World Championship.”

Legally, the agreement between Ferrari and the FIA does still stand. When Ferrari attempted to use its technical veto to block the FIA’s proposed budget cap, French courts deemed that the agreement stood, but that there was not enough time to implement the veto.

Ferrari insist however that the contract is no longer valid.