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Ferrari: Budget cap 'very noble', but won't work

Sergio Marchionne: This is the old problem for all those who try to impose limits on car development: if areas are left open, spending concentrates in this area.
Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne says Liberty Media's proposal to revive a controversial budget cap once it takes full control of Formula One is “very noble” but won't work.

Budget caps have been mooted numerous times over the last two decades as a means of controlling costs and closing the gap between the big spending manufacturer teams and smaller privateer outfits. However, while Marchionne says the idea in principle is fine, in reality he isn't convinced.

“The reality is Formula One is an extremely expensive sport,” he told The Sun.

“There are factory teams from Renault and Mercedes, big companies that can concentrate on development in a broader way, and this, for costs, becomes very dangerous.

“I accept the goal of reducing costs but much depends on us and how we adapt to these demands. But I don't believe a budget cap can work.”

He also added that the Scuderia hasn't saved any money in recent years despite various measures by the FIA, including engine and gearbox restrictions.

“When I look at old reports — ten years and even further back — I deduce that Ferrari has never held back when it comes to spending,” he added. “Despite all these interventions by the FIA to try to limit spending, the teams have found other ways to spend.

“This is the old problem for all those who try to impose limits on car development: if areas are left open, spending concentrates in this area.

“If I look at the last four of five years, we haven't saved a euro, we have simply redistributed our spending to other areas.

“In principle it's very noble but, then, the effect never gives the necessary results.”




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SoSlo

December 30, 2016 10:31 PM

a budget cap cannot work in motorsport with OEMs involved because OEMs can distribute costs around within their organization and avoid the cap. a budget cap sort-of works in a sport like the NFL because they really only cap the player salaries so it's easy to see if the numbers actually measure up. (obviously, they still get around the cap with incentives and perks etc) but for motorsport it doesn't work. the way to enforce a cap is to do it "tangentially" by setting up the tech regs so that spending a lot of money won't really help you. for example, only low tech solutions (no computers, no carbon brakes, etc.), unlimited displacement/formula/configuration (a smaller team can attempt to engineer a wholly different spec engine to overcome a big team spending $ on bleeding edge materials), it can be done, but the reality is nobody will do it



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