Though they may not see entirely eye-to-eye on the controversial new budget cap that has provoked so much debate within Formula 1 in recent weeks, Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone have nonetheless united to round upon the top flight's oldest and arguably most famous team Ferrari - with one dismissing notions that the Scuderia is indispensable as 'nonsense' and the other claiming the way they have gone about opposing the initiative has been idiotic.

There is set to be a further meeting between the teams in the guise of the Formula One Teams' Association (FOTA) and FIA President Mosley in Monaco today (19 May) in a bid to reach an agreement that satisfies everybody, and averts the threat both of a 'two-tier' F1 - with some competitors subscribing to the optional ?40 million limit and others not - and of current entrants walking away.

Thus far Ferrari, Renault, Toyota and Red Bull have all vowed to pull the plug should the unpopular rules not be changed in time for the 2010 campaign, with the former taking the dispute up a notch by seeking a legal injunction against the cap in a French court. Mosley is expected to permit the teams until 22 May (Friday) to come up with an alternative solution to the escalating expenditure in what is the world's most expensive sport, leaving them just a week to then sign up for next season - but he is adamant that despite the enduring stalemate as the clock ticks down, there is no 'crisis'.

"I don't think it will happen," the 68-year-old contended of the pull-out threats. "There is this suggestion that there is some sort of crisis, but I don't think there is a crisis. We were absolutely up against the deadline for new teams, and if a new team is going to come into F1 they have got to know they have got an entry and they are in. We've already left it very late, and that is why it was necessary to have an absolute deadline.

"Now that has been done, they will apply to enter and we will look at the applications and take a decision. Then there will probably be some vacancies, and other teams may decide to enter later or not as the case may be. There won't be a crisis of any kind, if indeed a crisis at all, until March 2010 when we go to Melbourne. There is plenty of time.

"The people who are up against it time-wise are new teams, because you cannot nowadays just start an F1 team at short notice. That is all underway - and we will see how the new teams look. There are a very large number of people who have expressed an interest, and a significant number of them are serious. The difficulty is that there are going to be more serious teams than the potential three places if all the existing teams enter, so we are going to have to take a view on that."

Having already engaged in a bitter war of words with Ferrari and FOTA President Luca di Montezemolo, Mosley re-iterated his prior assertion that F1 'could survive' without the only team that has competed in every campaign since the official inception of the world championship all the way back in 1950 - but both he and Ecclestone are equally confident that it will not come to that, with the head of the governing body even going so far as to accuse the scarlet brigade of being afraid of taking on their rivals on a level playing field.

Moreover, it has been reported that Stefano Domenicali only found out about the injunction by text message during last Friday's FOTA-FIA meeting - a situation Mosley described as almost laughable, with Ecclestone telling British newspaper The Times that Ferrari 'should have [taken the injunction out] before now - idiots'.

"I thought that was quite original," Mosley remarked, "to send a team principal in without informing him of his team's intentions. I think he was slightly embarrassed. The idea that they are indispensable is nonsense. It's a little bit like poor [Ayrton] Senna; he was the most important driver in 1994, but when he very sadly got killed Formula 1 went on. Lotus were very important once too; so were Brabham.

"I would be very surprised in the end if [Ferrari do leave], because they have been saying we are going to leave - yet they seek an injunction to try and get the rules not changed. If they were going to leave, you would think they would just leave. When all the dust settles, sense will prevail. At the moment everybody can posture and take positions, as it will not be an issue until March 2010 - and my view is that Ferrari will race in Formula 1 next year."

"They've applied for an injunction - I'd be surprised if they get it," he added, according to the Daily Mirror. "If things go as they should go they are going to have to make their mind up. If they want to come racing, they come on the same basis as everyone else. Simply being there and spending more money is not really fair - and it's not in their interests. They're saying we have violated an agreement with them. And obviously we're saying absolutely not."

"Formula 1 without Ferrari is not as good as Formula 1 with Ferrari, but it is still Formula 1 and it would work perfectly well. It would be very sad to lose them, but otherwise you've got to give up governing the sport and just let Ferrari do it. The moment we say 'we can't function without Ferrari' would mean they could dictate all the rules. We can't have that. They are fully capable of competing with the other teams even if they only have the same money. They have very clever, talented people - they don't need three times what everyone else has."

Having already made concessions in abandoning the 'two-tier' aspect to the new regulations - with the budget cap now set to be in force for all competitors, only at a figure yet to be determined - Mosley also brushed off suggestions that the situation echoes the infamous 'breakaway' threat of four years ago.

"I think the chances of a breakaway are smaller this time," he is quoted as having said by the Daily Mail. "After all, we are giving them a chance to race and spend less money. Who can say [what happened to Honda] won't happen to Toyota, BMW, Renault, whoever?

"The ?40 million budget excludes engines, drivers, motor homes and promotion. We have a little scope to take other things out, but what we don't want to do is put the new teams into a position where somebody can spend more money than them as that would be unfair. When you are already down to ten teams, with two spare spaces, then there is a powerful argument to get new teams in - but if you say to people it is EUR100 million to compete, they say they can't do it at that cost."

"When it became apparent that any of the manufacturers might stop at any moment, because Honda did, we knew we had to bring new teams in," he added, speaking to the BBC. "They (the existing teams) said 'well, we'll give you guarantees we'll continue', we said 'let's have the guarantee', [but] no guarantee appears. So then we said 'well, we'll have meetings to discuss how to bring teams in', [but] no meeting.

"I think what they may have hoped is [that] we would just sit there and wait and wait and wait, and then it would be too late for the new teams to come in and they (FOTA) would have complete control of the situation. Well, we couldn't do that, so we had no choice but to take a decision when we got to the limit of time.

"If we don't have enough entries to fill the grid - which we probably don't - they (the teams) know they can come later. There's just a danger there might be too few spaces for those outside. We are very confident we will attract new teams - we'll probably have six or seven serious applicants. What might happen is that the team that is outside when the music stops, they'd probably have to buy one of the small teams or something. They should think about that before they don't put an entry in."

Whilst Mosley may be expecting only a handful of entries when the 29 May deadline dawns - from such as present incumbents Williams, current world championship leaders Brawn GP and Force India as well as prospective new boys Prodrive/Aston Martin, Lola and US GPE - Sir Frank Williams is confident that the situation can yet be resolved, telling the Daily Mail: "We still have work to do among ourselves, but I can't see anyone not being prepared to race next year."