Maurizio Arrivabene says it is 'not Ferrari's responsibility' to get involved in negotiations with Bernie Ecclestone to save the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, but emphasises its loss would be a huge detriment to the sport.
Ecclestone remains in a deadlock with organisers of the Italian Grand Prix over extending the current contract that ends in 2016, though some fear even this year's race could well prove Monza's swansong if a new deal cannot be sought soon.
As it stands, Ecclestone insists he is ready to talk, but maintains he is unwilling to provide a 'cut price deal' to keep it on the schedule.
Coming at a time when many in the sport are concerned about the dwindling number of traditional hosts on the schedule, including the already axed France and the under threat Germany, Italy's potential demise has arguably greater relevance given the influence of Ferrari on the sport.
However, Ferrari team principal Arrivabene says it is not Ferrari's place to begin putting pressure on parties to make a deal, even if he makes it clear the importance of keeping the race at Monza.
“Playing a role is a big word. I mean we are not negotiating with Bernie. It's not our job, it's not our responsibility. Having said so, I think the grand prix of Italy is Monza and I want to be very clear on that. The only picture that I saw in Maranello of Enzo Ferrari at a track actually was here at Monza and I said many, many times something very clear: there is a core of Formula One that in my opinion is represented by Monza, Spa Francorchamps, Hockenheim, Silverstone and Monaco.
“This is the core of Formula One and I think we have to preserve it. Because every person that is losing his own culture, he's losing the roots, he's not anymore a person – I mean if we are talking about human beings. But also for these kind of things. If we are losing the core in my opinion then we are losing the show, so I think we can do everything that is in our possibility to defend a grand prix and the clear statement is the following: the grand prix of Italy is Monza.
“The second sentence is that we need to preserve the core of Formula One. I have nothing against all the other grands prix, because it is an international show but even a show has a core and the core for Formula One is the number of grands prix that I mentioned before. This is my personal opinion and it's also I think our opinion as Ferrari.”
Ferrari's stance is similar to that of Mercedes, which expressed its desire to ensure the German Grand Prix – which has been dropped for 2015 but will return in 2016 – remained on the calendar, but would not get involved in financial terms.