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FOTA welcomes new Concorde deal

The Formula One Teams Association has welcomed the signing of the new version of the Concorde Agreement after confirming that all its members – bar BMW Sauber – have signed up to the new deal.

The new deal sees the team's commit to F1 until the end of the 2012 season and brings to an end the lengthy disputes that have taken place with the FIA in recent months.

In a statement, FOTA said it was pleased negotiations had finally ended and reiterated that it would do what it could to ensure that BMW Sauber remains part of the grid – with the team having missed its Wednesday deadline to sign up as it searches for a buyer.

“The Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) today welcomed the successful conclusion of negotiations leading to the signing of the 2009 Concorde Agreement,” the statement read. “Signed by all Formula One teams, with the only exception of BMW-Sauber AG, the FIA, and Formula One Administration (FOA), Concorde 2009 lays down the commercial and regulatory guidelines for Formula 1 whilst guaranteeing the teams' until the end of the 2012 season.

“FOTA will support any initiative which would allow BMW-Sauber AG to reapply for full participation within the new Concorde Agreement.”

The statement also confirmed that teams have agreed on methods to try and reduce the costs involved in the sport and said that the focus now was on ensuring that the racing on track takes precedence.

“All Formula One teams have together reached a voluntary agreement on their own, which will put into practice FOTA's long-standing objective gradually to reduce overall spending, eventually to around the levels of the early 1990s,” it continued. “The terms of Concorde 2009 will reinvigorate the role of the Formula 1 Commission, and various other Working Groups. The Formula 1 Commission will henceforth be a key decision-making body for change in Formula 1.

“FOTA's attention will now turn to other issues we believe to be in the long-term interest of F1: racing at the best tracks, in front of the biggest audiences and expanding F1's reach.”

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Jim Clausen

August 06, 2009 2:11 PM

F1 is in a lot sorrier shape than most of us recognize, according to some industry insiders. A large part of the problem seems to be racing in countries that have little or no interest in F1. It's good for Bernie because he extracts huge fees regardless of how few fans show up. It's bad for sponsors, the life-blood of racing, to have their product exposed to so few potential customers. This is especially true in countries where the price of a Grand Prix ticket is some 25%-50% of a person's annual wages. Unless FOTA can get control of where they race, teams will have a lot less money to race with. Signing the Concorde agreement will not bring about the changes for F1 to survive as we know it.

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