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FOTA angry at 'perplexing' new FIA regulations

The Formula One Teams' Association (FOTA) has revealed its 'disappointment and concern' at the new sporting and technical regulations announced today by the FIA's World Motor Sport Council [see separate story – click here] – fearing the 'continuous upheaval' will be 'perplexing' for all involved and could well 'turn on its head the very essence of Formula 1'.

Following its landmark meeting in Geneva earlier this month, the unified teams' organisation had hoped and believed that a good number of its proposals would be taken on-board by F1's governing body, but ultimately only those advocating greater media and spectator access have been adopted, with the proposed new 12-9-7-5-4-3-2-1 points system thrown out of the window.

What's more, the new 'optional' budget cap appears to have muddied the already cloudy waters yet further regarding the top flight's technical make-up, leaving many teams unsure as to exactly where they stand.

'With regard to the decisions taken today by the FIA World Council, FOTA would like to express its disappointment and concern at the fact that these have been taken in a unilateral manner,' read an official statement.

'The framework of the regulations as defined by the FIA, to be applicable as from 2010, runs the risk of turning on its head the very essence of Formula 1 and the principles that make it one of the most popular and appealing sports.

'Given the timeframe and the way in which these modifications were decided upon, we feel it is necessary to study closely the new situation and to do everything – especially in these difficult times – to maintain a stable framework for the regulations without continuous upheaval, that can be perplexing and confusing for car manufacturers, teams, the public and sponsors.'

The sport's commercial rights-holder Bernie Ecclestone, however, has insisted that the new scoring system – whereby the driver with the most wins at the end of the season, rather than the most points, will be crowned champion [see separate story – click here] – is emphatically the right way to go.

“The idea is to give people racing,” the 78-year-old said on BBC Radio Two. “Somebody running second is going to try to win rather than (as used to be the case) think that by doing so he will only get two points more.

“[The old system] was not a big motivation to try to get past somebody. If somebody is in the lead and you're behind them in second, are you really going to try and take a risk that will only get you two points?”

Related Pictures

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FOTA logo
F1 team chiefs at a press conference in Geneva to discuss the way forward for Formula One [Pic credit: LAT]
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Lewis Hamilton and The Stig
Sebastien Ogier, Red Bull, RB7, F1 test [Credit: Red Bull Content Pool]
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Shrieker - Unregistered

March 17, 2009 10:43 PM

For the record, when did team orders disappear ? They always existed, and always will. Because one of the two drivers in a team naturally will be faster than the other - whether it be by six tenths or just a tenth of a sec. consistently. Now I must say I hate the dwarf. But for this once I have to aggree with him. It would be a disaster if a driver finishing second third second third every race wins the title whereas some others have won 6-7 races. It'd be a real shame. This system eliminates this possibility. And still championships could be decided in the final round. When was the last time a driver arrived at the last gp of the season by a 2 wins difference ? .....

Mark_ - Unregistered

March 17, 2009 7:50 PM

You have to wonder how much longer Toyota, Renault, and BMW will want to continue based on these changes. I think there is going to be an even bigger incentive to form a break away series.

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