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Ferrari blast 'fundamentally unfair and biased' F1 cost cap

Ferrari has criticised Formula 1's new optional budget cap as 'fundamentally unfair and perhaps even biased' and as being liable to create a two-tier, split-level championship of haves and have-nots – as Luca di Montezemolo hinted that the team's participation is 'not a never-ending story'.

The £40 million limit was formally ratified during a meeting of the governing body's World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) in Paris earlier this week, with those teams that adhere to it set to benefit from such technical incentives as movable front and rear wings, an engine that is not subject to a rev limit, unlimited out-of-season track testing, no restrictions on the scale and speed of wind tunnel testing and twice as much KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery Systems) power – none of which will be available to their free-spending rivals.

FIA President Max Mosley has suggested that as the top flight's longest-standing entrant, Ferrari would be setting a strong example should it pledge its support to the budget cap – something its own president, di Montezemolo, has made it clear the team is unlikely to do. The Italian wrote to Mosley on 28 April – two days before the details of the cap were made public – expressing his misgivings about the idea and complaining that the Scuderia had been granted insufficient time to consider the proposal before the WMSC reunion.

According to international news agency Reuters, di Montezemolo warned Mosley that Ferrari's status meant it had guaranteed rights within the sport – and that he expected those rights to be respected. He added that he had 'always been concerned' about a cost cap 'mainly because I consider that there are serious technical difficulties in making sure that any cap can realistically be monitored'.

The 61-year-old contended that the move would likely create 'two categories of teams' and consequently confuse fans, and suggested the regulation changes were being unnecessarily rushed through, adding: “Any controversy [regarding] the actual respect of the cost cap would undermine the image of Formula 1 and could seriously damage any involved team.”

Though Ferrari is not the only one of the ten current teams to have reacted cautiously to the cap, Mosley afforded di Montezemolo's arguments short shrift, insisting that unless urgent action is taken to rein in F1's out-of-control expenditure, Honda is unlikely to be the last manufacturer or independent outfit to pull the plug on its involvement.

“I hope Ferrari will take the lead in agreeing to the cost cap mechanism,” the 68-year-old wrote in a return letter, “thus freeing its engineers to work and preserving its shareholders' money. As you know, we are in an unprecedented situation. The car industry and financial services are the two main sources of Formula 1 income – both are in serious difficulty. We cannot just sit and wait, hoping nothing bad will happen.

“We have already lost one manufacturer. Despite my repeated requests, not a single manufacturer has given us a legally-binding undertaking that it will continue in Formula 1.We may lose another manufacturer team at any moment.

“We already know that the current levels of expenditure are unsustainable for the independent teams. If we are to reduce the risk of the Formula 1 World Championship collapsing, we have to allow new teams in. We also have to reduce costs drastically. The matter is therefore extremely urgent.”



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
09.09.2006 Monza, Italy,  Luca di Montezemolo (ITA), Scuderia Ferrari, Fiat President, Chairman & Managing Director - Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 15, Italian Grand Prix, Saturday
Lando Norris, McLaren Autosport BRDC Awards [Credit: Martyn Pass PR]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Daniel Ricciardo tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Kimi Raikkonen tests the 2017 F1 tyres in Abu Dhabi [credit: Pirelli]
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes, Pirelli 2017 tyre test [Credit: Pirelli]
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid race winner and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, 2nd place Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W07 Hybrid and Champion 2016 and 3rd place Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Start of the race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB12 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H and Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
27.11.2016 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF16-H
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