The FIA has issued the entry list for next season’s F1 world championship and it features all of the existing teams and the three new ones who entered last week.
Meanwhile more details of the deal which saved F1, brokered by Luca di Montezemolo, Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone, are staring to emerge. The crucial points are that the rules for next year will be the same as 2009, costs will be brought right down, but there will be no budget cap and the teams and manufacturers have committed to the sport until at least 2012.
The FIA emerges from the episode with its authority intact and a more sensible attitude from the teams to spending, FOTA emerges as a strong body which achieved a lot through staying united and Bernie Ecclestone and his partners, CVC, know that the cashflows will continue for at least another three years.
The rules may be as in 2009, but this is really only a starting point. The devil will be in the detail; will they go ahead with the ban on refuelling, for example? Will there be KERS? There is still more work to be done on this and FOTA meets tomorrow at noon, to move forward on finalising things in conjunction with the FIA.
There will be no budget cap, instead teams will act together to drastically reduce costs, down to a level of around £40m million in two years time. They will provide some ‘technical assistance’ to the new teams, although as all three of them are signed up to Cosworth, cut price engines will not be part of that. It will be interesting to see whether all three of the new teams are still using Cosworths when next season starts. Asking the teams what this ‘technical assistance’ consists of, the answer is rather vague at the moment.
The teams and manufacturers have agreed to commit to 2012, but the deals with the FIA and FOM are different. This is a key point for FOTA. The FIA deal is open ended, recognising the FIA’s right to be the regulator of the sport, but now with the F1 commission in place to decide on future rules, which was not the case recently. With regard to FOM, the teams are signed up until 2012, presumably on the same commercial terms, but they have separated their dealings with FOM from their dealings with the FIA. There is no detail about whether Brawn will get the money it feels it is owed by FOM for Honda’s past prize fund.
Max Mosley will not seek re-election in October when his current term expires. In the meantime he has relinquished his position as the main contact man at the FIA for F1. Instead the FIA Senate will deal with any issues in F1. Mosley is a member of the Senate and, under FIA rules, he will remain a member in future as an ex president. There is a sense here that if this deal were to fall through then Mosley would be on hand to take up the FIA’s side again. Meanwhile there will be an election for a new FIA president in due course.
The deal was hammered out in a two hour meeting between Luca di Montezemolo of FOTA/Ferrari, Bernie Ecclestone and Max Mosley. The meeting took place in the FIA building and the three then went across to the world council meeting room to get everything ratified. The three men broke out of the WMSC meeting part way through to finalise a few details and then returned to report their agreement.
Both sides have achieved much of what he wanted, by pushing the teams over the brink, Mosley has got new teams into the sport, forced the manufacturers to commit and got them and the teams to wake up and smell the coffee when it comes to budgets.
So what provided the breakthrough? Well on the FIA’s side it was FOTA’s acknowledgement of the FIA’s authority, their right to govern and regulate F1. On FOTA’s side it was Mosley’s agreement not to stand again and the return of the F1 commission for setting new rules.
FOTA has achieved a lot and will no doubt continue as the body which represents the teams and manufacturers in dealings with the FIA and FOM in future. I imagine that Williams and Force India will be readmitted to FOTA, having sat on the sidelines throughout this most recent process.
Leaving their respective methods to one side, to me this episode shows that Mosley has always been a long term thinker, whereas the teams are more short term. It has been painful and it’s not completely over yet, but F1 should emerge stronger.
2010 F1 ENTRY LIST
SCUDERIA FERRARI MARLBORO FERRARI
VODAFONE McLAREN MERCEDES McLAREN MERCEDES
BMW SAUBER F1 TEAM BMW SAUBER
RENAULT F1 TEAM RENAULT
PANASONIC TOYOTA RACING TOYOTA
SCUDERIA TORO ROSSO STR TBA
RED BULL RACING RBR TBA
AT&T WILLIAMS WILLIAMS TOYOTA
FORCE INDIA F1 TEAM FORCE INDIA MERCEDES
BRAWN GP FORMULA ONE TEAM BRAWN TBA
CAMPOS META TEAM CAMPOS COSWORTH
MANOR GRAND PRIX MANOR COSWORTH
TEAM US F1 TEAM US F1 COSWORTH