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The Formula 1 cost schedule: Todt in a strong position

Todt in a strong position
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A On June 30th, the teams wanted to agree on how from 2013 the issue of costs is regulated. Except for Red Bull and Toro Rosso, everyone was in agreement. The costs are initially to be checked by the FIA ​​on the basis of the Singapore Agreement (315 employees, 30 million euros external services, 60 wind tunnel hours, 40 teraflops simulations, four aero days). In the event of a violation, the World Federation can impose penalties, in the worst case up to exclusion from the World Cup.

FIA does not have to adhere to Concorde agreements

Five to twelve, some teams got tails, wanted to clarify details and asked for more time. The planned vote has been postponed. By June 30, eight out of twelve votes would have been enough. After that, unanimity is required for entry into force next year. Did Red Bull win and the FIA ​​missed their target?

Not necessarily. FIA President Jean Todt does not feel bound by the Concorde Agreement, as the world association has not yet signed the new contract, which will run until 2020. While the teams and Bernie Ecclestone are largely in agreement on the issue of finances, the procedure for rule-finding and monitoring has still not been clarified.

Ecclestone and some of the hardliners among the teams would like to reduce the influence of the FIA ​​and write the rules yourself. The association should only monitor compliance. But Jean Todt doesn't play along. He also demands part of the big windfall. And, according to legal experts, he has a good chance of winning this tug of war.

Some teams' right of veto violates EU law

According to information available to auto motor und sport, the FIA contest the Concorde agreement should it be sidelined. And not just the FIA, but also some of the teams involved. According to the plan of the rights holders, Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren, Lotus and Williams should decide on the rules in the future and also have a right of veto in the event of changes to the regulations. Mercedes would still belong to this group when the signature of the new Concorde agreement from Stuttgart is finally available.

According to experts, this approach can be challenged under European competition law. 'It distorts the competition because it gives the teams that make the rules and therefore know them before everyone else, an undue advantage. That would lead toAbuse of power, 'says our insider.

Would Ecclestone have a counter-argument?' Bernie could say that Formula 1 is not a free market, but a private agreement, which is why European competition laws do not apply. But that would be problematic. Bernie is currently trying to usurp everything. It is hard to imagine that Jean Todt will allow that. '

Three years lead time for FIA technology changes

The FIA ​​will play this card if there is a confrontation. In principle, Jean Todt doesn't need one Concorde Agreement. Without it, he could act much more freely. With regard to the technical regulations, Todt would still need a kind of Formula 1 commission.

Our expert: 'Chapter 15 of the Concorde Agreement says that there is a technical change without the consent of the teams must be three times on January 1st. The FIA ​​could not prescribe a single-cylinder engine with 500 cubic centimeters for 2015 at the earliest, if it wanted to. With the sports law and decision-making, Todt has a free hand for 2013. He just has to follow the 100-year deal with the rights holders, but that hardly limits him. That puts him in a strong position in his negotiations with Ecclestone. '

Bad news for those preventing a cost-cutting plan. Initially, Todt was reserved about plans for the FIA ​​to include this question in its regulations, but now he is fully behind it. 'Cost control is one of the most important tasks for the future.' Nevertheless, the 66-year-old Frenchman is still looking for consensus. He wants everyone to be happy with the plan.

Will Red Bull continue to play for a while?

The technical directors are currently working on further tightening the cost brake from 2014. If that All teams should vote on it when it is finished. Sauber managing director Monisha Kaltenborn sees no reason for further delay: “There is nothing that Red Bull does not know.” The objection from Red Bull that the engine manufacturers should also be slowed down is for Saubers strong woman no argument. 'You can do both. If we can find a good solution for the chassis, we can apply it to the engines in a second step. '

Kaltenborn is also hoping that the FIA ​​will stay tough if Red Bull should play for time again in September. 'The FIA ​​doesn't even have to include the cost-cutting plan in the Sports Act. It could also create a financial rule parallel to the technical and sporting regulations. There is nothing about it in the Concorde Agreement. '

In the opinion of many, Formula 1 is facing an existential decision. The new Concorde Agreement, which makes the rich even richer and the poor hardly better off than now, solves them No problems, it just exacerbates them: big teams have enough narrow minded people who don't understandwant them not to be able to drive against themselves.

Global budget cap as the fairest solution?

In an interview with auto motor und sport a year ago, the former FIA President Max Mosley made the following comparison when asked about a budget cap. 'If a team is allowed to compete with significantly more money than others, this team can also be given an engine with more cubic capacity. What's the difference? A sport has to be interested in the financial conditions being reasonably fair. '

According to his thesis, Ferrari would be. Red Bull and McLaren were there even if they didn't get any money from the rights holders. The sponsorship income of the big three alone is higher than the amount that Sauber spends in one season. Like Kaltenborn, Mosley is one of the most ardent advocates of budget capping. He wanted to prescribe it to Formula 1 in 2008, but his plans failed.

Kaltenborn brought a modified Mosley plan into the debate about the costs this time. 'You can turn it around as you want. Controlling the budget is the easiest and most efficient way to save costs. Everything we are discussing now is complicated, and there are always ways to get past it.'>


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