23 March 2012
Malaysian GP - Friday press conference - Pt.2
We run a pretty old-fashioned structure, I guess, in that I attend all the races. As Stefano says, there are many faculties with a F1 team these days and you have the responsibility for them on a day-to-day basis, reporting to the shareholders and managing the team on a daily basis. So there's certainly never a quiet moment, and that's part of the involvement and challenge of the role. Every day, you drive to work, you're not quite sure what to expect. It's both a sport and a business and I think the role during a Grand Prix weekend is certainly quite different to during the week back in the factory, so it's a multi-faceted role, certainly in our case.
Q: (Dieter Rencken - The Citizen)
Question to all six of you: Mr Ecclestone has, this past week, confirmed that he has suggested or proposed to CVC that they do list F1 on the Singapore Stock Exchange. Would you, as team principals, be interested in acquiring equity in the listing individually?
Better ask Gerald, he's the only one who can afford it.
Certainly from Red Bull's perspective, we're an entrant, we're a team, we're very happy to be both an entrant and a team and we don't see a necessity or requirement to have a shareholding.
I can copy what Christian said.
I can't afford it. I don't think it's our business. Our business is that we're a race team primarily - we've got a few other businesses as well now - but being owners of F1 isn't something that's in our plans.
As far as F1 goes, it might have made sense if all the F1 teams could afford it, if they all became shareholders in some form or fashion but that's not going to happen, so as far as investing in F1, I think it then becomes purely a financial position and then it falls out of the sport. It's like if someone wants to invest or not. It's like any other stuff.
No, I join the gentlemen in front. No.
Definitely not. We've got enough challenges in being a F1 team. We will focus on that.
Q: (Arianna Ravelli - Corriere della Sera)
Mr Whitmarsh, McLaren remains involved in FOTA. Are you afraid that this could cause some disadvantages in the negotiations for the new Concorde Agreement?
No, I'm not afraid. Whether it's through FOTA or by whatever mechanism, I think it's important that the teams work together to really develop our sport, to make sure that we're fit for purpose, make sure that we rise to the challenge that F1 has. We're a sport, we're an entertainment, there's many challenges in front of us and I think there's been some great examples of co-operation between the teams. There are other challenges that we've struggled with but I think we should continue to try and work together.
Q: (Dieter Rencken - The Citizen)
Christian, last week in the press conference, the team principals that were present confirmed that ten of the twelve had signed a copy of the letter to the FIA regarding cost-cutting and policing of the Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA). I believe that your team and your sister team didn't sign; is there a particular reason for that?
Yeah. We didn't see the letter. Simple. I can't sign something I didn't see. Whether or not we agree with the content is something else. Firstly, I think what I would like to make clear is that Red Bull is absolutely fully behind cost control in F1. Whether the RRA is the right route to achieve that is what we question. I believe that letter, from what I read, requested for the FIA to police the RRA which, in our opinion would be the wrong route. We believe full-heartedly in controlling costs in F1 and not frivolous spending, but we think that there are better ways of doing that and containing that through sporting and technical regulations as opposed to a resource restriction that relies on equivalence and apportionment of time and personnel, which is always tricky in subsidiary companies, particularly of automotive manufacturers. So we would be totally open to any discussion that involves cost control that pursued those avenues.
Q: (Ian Parkes - Press Association)
Continuing on that thread, why would you not want to be policed when ten other teams would agree to that? That would suggest you've got something to hide in your accounts or the way you manage your finances?
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