Force India deputy team principal Bob Fernley says F1 is now controlled by the Strategy Group which has the power to impose changes on the other teams.
The Strategy Group includes six of the biggest teams on the grid, with Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes, McLaren, Lotus and Williams all represented. With Toro Rosso being owned by Red Bull that leaves Force India, Sauber, Caterham and Marussia without influence on the Strategy Group, and Fernley believes the proposed changes to Friday running in 2015
is an example that the bigger teams can now control the sport.
“What you've got to look at today is that Formula One is controlled by the Strategy Group, that's the reality of life,” Fernley said. “And that Strategy Group comprises of the top-running teams that are on significant budgets that don't impact on them whatever decisions that they make.”
With Fernley revealing Force India has not been consulted on any changes to the race weekend schedule, he also expects the teams outside the Strategy Group will be unable to influence any outcome.
“It will come as a proposal. We won't have any input on it whatsoever. It will come as a proposal and we will just be told 'vote Yes or No' … at the F1 Commission.
“It's just a majority [required for proposals to be approved] and then it goes to the World Council. So whatever you're looking at at the moment, proposals will have to be in for the F1 Commission meeting – which I think is in a week or two's time – and then whatever comes through from that will go to the World Council which is normally just a rubberstamping job. Once it's got that far they accept it and that's quite right and proper in all fairness, because it's gone through due process.
“What I think you've got to recognise; there will be other things that come out over the course of events and what it will clearly tell you going forward is that the governance and the control of Formula One is the F1 Strategy Group.
“Whereas before you thought there might have been some possibility of a balanced process, I think it's now absolutely evident where the control is.”
And with the Strategy Group having prevented the planned cost cap being implemented next year, Fernley has doubts that other planned cost-cutting measures will actually come to fruition.
“I think you had to go through due process. So the process was 'Can we look at sustainable cost controls and promote competitiveness?' So things were proposed like cost caps which were rejected, then it was looking at cost control through regulation element – which was proposed by the Strategy Group – how much of that is going to come through? That will be the thing…”