V8 Supercars Australia chairman Tony Cochrane has outlined changes to both the organisation and the category as a whole that he would like to see implemented to safeguard and improve the sport's future.

As well as welcoming veteran driver - and multiple champion - Mark Skaife as an independent director, Cochrane's statement covered areas including a vision of the car of the future and next year's calendar. It was the increasingly common area of cost-cutting that headlined the missive, however, with the chairman listing 14 points for consideration by the board.

"At the recent team owners forum on the Gold Coast, a range of cost reduction initiatives was agreed by all team owners present," Cochrane wrote, "These are now notified items under the REC and the technical department is preparing the business case for each item. As each item is approved by the board, it will then be added to the rule book as a matter of urgency, because I am determined, and I have a mandate to deliver on, real cost reductions to every team in this championship. We have been criticised in the past for how slowly we have moved on these issues, [and] I intend to change that perception."

The 'Cost Reduction Action List' includes the following measures:

* Remove 'go fast' (non-engine) data and telemetry;
* Control valve train -Increase target life of engine to 8000km;
* Control wheel;
* Control dampers;
* Cap the number of brake discs and pads per season or event;
* Control engine airbox;
* Control radiator duct and cooling system. A common radiator core would be ideal but if this isn't feasible teams should have to homologate a cooling package for the season;
* Control rear axle housing;
* Control suspension, with each team's complete front hub assembly should be homologated for a two-year period. Suspension (including wishbones, track rods, push rods etc) should be homologated each year for a complete season;
* Increase the number of composite parts ie current front and rear quarters/fibreglass bonnets;
* Final drive ratio, to reduce number of options to 3.15 and 3.5 only;
* Define centre of gravity of cars (possibly for 'next generation' car);
* Investigate group purchasing and manufacturing (consumables and parts);
* Control fuel system

Cochrane confirmed that, following the resignation of Campbell Little, he would use his new executive chairman role 'to undertake a total review of the [technical and racing] departments, with a view to restructuring both areas'.

"I will be undertaking this work with the full support of the board and without interference from anyone," he continued, "I expect to have the new structure and people in place in time for the Sandown event. Clearly, our current structure has some faults and I intend to rectify that situation so we move forward in a positive environment."

Confirming Skaife's arrival as a voting board member, Cochrane revealed that the V8 legend would still be able to race should he desire, something that may happen following his recent testing activities with Sprint Gas Racing.

"As per our press announcement of earlier this past week, I am delighted to announce the unfilled position of independent director on the board of V8 Supercars Australia has been filled by Mark Skaife," he confirmed, "Mark joins Roger Cook as the other independent director, taking the board of V8SA to eight voting members.

"Mark brings outstanding knowledge and experience to our board. He is also truly independent now that he no longer has any contractual ties to either GM, HRT or HSV. He, of course, will continue in his role on the central commentary team for our Seven Network and international telecast of the championship and I have absolutely no problem with Mark undertaking a drive in the two endurance races this year, should he choose to do so, as I think it will give an amazing enhancement to the telecast coverage from a totally unique prospective. I welcome Mark to the board and to his valued council."

Skaife's appointment will play an important role as the series attempts to define its 'car of the future', with only engine layout and cost ceiling set in stone at present.

"The board has also decided, with the announcement of Mark as a board director, to appoint him as chairman of this very important committee," Cochrane revealed, "He will be joined on this committee by one Holden and one Ford director, as well as the CTD and myself as executive chairman, [and] will have the power to co-opt additional people to act in an advisory capacity on this committee as he sees fit from time to time. This committee will report back to the board in September with a view to putting their findings to a team owners' forum in November.

"This committee has as wide a brief as possible and will talk to as many manufacturers as possible. Our only stipulations going forward is that it has some type of V8 engine as a power plant and that the new COF has a top end price of $250,000 cost to our teams."

Limiting costs, Cochrane admitted, should make the teams healthier financially rather than providing the opportunity for more operations to come in.

"Without increasing the team franchises - indeed, I remain a firm supporter of reducing them to 28 - the probable increase in manufacturer support and the sharp reduction in the cost of the cars will result in a much stronger financial position going forward for all our teams," he insisted, "It is envisaged that the first year of racing with the COF will be season 2012, however an introduction, perhaps by some way of phasing it in, could be in place by 2011. The final decision on timing will come in the first quarter of next year."

Welcoming the new ten-year agreement with the Northern Territory government to continue racing at Hidden Valley in Darwin, Cochrane revealed details of next year's calendar, which could feature a radical change to its schedule.

"I did announce at the team's forum [that] we are considering splitting the calendar next year into two phases, with a mid-year break in late July through to mid-September," he announced, "Despite the global financial situation, we still remain highly sought out as a championship. Certainly, the possibility exists for us to expand either next year or the year after to 16 events. We will make further calendar announcements in the coming months."

Whatever happens to his plans, however, Cochrane insists that the future remains rosy.

"I have read with interest some of the utter garbage written about some type of 'crisis' engulfing our sport," he concluded, "Let me assure everyone and the wider motorsport community, V8 Supercars has an extremely strong management team, a strong and cohesive board, a solid financial position - the envy of many sports with almost no borrowings, and an exciting and prosperous future. There are no leadership concerns in V8 Supercars."