FIA President Max Mosley is expected to announce today to F1 team bosses that further cost-cutting measures are necessary. In a letter addressed to the team principals, he pushes for increased concessions from the constructors.
Mosley and the teams (represented by FOTA) agreed to a raft of proposals to reduce spending in the sport in December after the shock departure of Honda, but the FIA boss believes more is needed to ensure the continued health of the sport in an uncertain global economic climate.
“Even before the current crisis, Formula One was not viable,” said Mosley. “Costs have been so high that we have had vacancies in the Championship for some time. Secondly, it is impossible to cut costs substantially without significant change.
“Inevitably, cherished projects, facilities and sadly even people have to go. Thirdly, the fact of having recently invested in an expensive facility is not an argument for retaining it. That money has been spent. It’s gone.
“What we have to avoid is forcing others to spend the same money in order to keep up. Fourthly, there is no rational argument to support the continued use in Formula One of expensive technologies which have no relevance outside the sport and are unknown (and thus of no interest) to the general public.”
However, many of the race teams are reluctant to hinder the development of their packages by spending less. Similarly, a fierce debate rages over the possibility of standardised parts, which the FIA says would cut costs significantly, but which the teams say would threaten the raison d`etre of the sport. There is expected to be a compromise list of which parts can be developed by the teams and which will be standardised, which Mosley hopes will result in less development and therefore less cost.
Mosley said: “All remaining chassis elements will be either standard or frozen. We wish to develop this list in consultation with FOTA but it must be understood that it will involve a radical curtailment of R&D in respect of the chassis and hence a very significant reduction in costs. If carefully thought through, it should also reduce the need for the use of wind tunnels, CFD and simulators.”