Rules changes ‘don’t go far enough to cut costs’

2014 Austrian Grand Prix

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F1’s planned rules changes for 2015 don’t go far enough to address the long-standing problem of how to reduce costs, according to Sauber’s Monisha Kaltenborn.

Formula One teams agreed a modest plan of cost reductions for the 2015 season earlier this week which mainly involved reversing the increases in track testing permitted this year.

“In my view we are not where we should be and where we wanted to be, at least from our team’s perspective,” said Kaltenborn during today’s press conference at the Red Bull Ring. “I also don’t think that we have achieved any measurable cost cutting.”

Kaltenborn called on the FIA to take the lead in reducing costs in Formula One after its plan for a budget cap was rejected by F1’s richest teams.

“There was a decision taken last year by the [World Motor Sport] Council in which they endorsed cost cutting as a target and they also agreed in principle to the cost cap and the FIA was mandated to implement that.

“Now since then other decisions have been taken by other groups, going in a different direction, and following that amongst other teams, the non-Strategy Group teams, they were asked to bring proposals in, how you can achieve a sustainable cost base, while still promoting competition. We did that, we also didn’t get anywhere on that. So my understanding, I really wonder what the FIA is now going to do and how Formula One will be governed in this respect.”

However Red Bull team principal Christian Horner defended the latest changes to the rules on cost grounds.

“We’ve agreed a couple of things next year which will save some money, testing is reduced, testing will be in Europe rather than overseas, wind tunnel time and CFD ratio has been further reduced,” he said.

“But I think what’s important to say is that everything that was agreed in the Formula One Commission meeting earlier this week was agreed unanimously. That means every team was around the table, every team had a right to vote against it but everything that went through, went through on a unanimous basis.

“So we’ve got what we’ve got but I think the most important thing now going forward is stability.”

2014 Austrian Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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14 comments on “Rules changes ‘don’t go far enough to cut costs’”

  1. Completely with Kaltenborn on this one. Sure they got back from the cost increase due to testing and testing in Bahrain they had this year (where they made sense due to the completely new engines) to about what was there before. But surely that is not the needed step towards ensuring a more long term level playing field and the longevity of the sport.

    Instead we have Bernie telling the world it would be better if he was back in full control and Monti empowering Bernie by calling for a meeting to discuss things.
    If Todt was the leader he seemed to be at Ferrari, he would just write the rules starting from next year onwards including limiting personell during pitstops, capping spending, restricting the amount of iterations per year for several parts like wings, suspension parts and a whole lot of stuff we never get to see anyway. And Mandate that anything that IS brought to the car will be presented to interested media to keep tech interest fed with nice new bits – as a mandatory media presentation :-)

    1. @bascb, good points, unfortunately if your car is a dog no amount of spending restrictions will help.

      1. it it makes other cars dogs as well, it still brings you closer to the competition @hohum! :-P

  2. Formula One teams agreed a most plan of cost reductions for the 2015 season earlier this week

    modest @keithcollantine ?

  3. Wee Wee Wee! More whining from the have nots. If you can’t afford to participate race in a different series quite simple really. Anyone one/team who would participate in a sport where you put out millions of dollars and have little or no say in things is a nut. Sauber allowed this situation to happen and now he has to live with it. Shut up and race or go to a different series.

    1. No sport can be long term sustainable if bringing a huge pot of dough is what is most needed to succeed.

      1. Then sign a Concorde agreement that makes sense. They leave millions on the table in TV revenue then complain that the sport is too expensive for them. I have no sympathy for someone who sets their house on fire then complains that the fire department didn’t save it.

    2. pastaman (@)
      20th June 2014, 21:49

      I guess we’ll just race with 8 cars then…

      1. nah, they will all get the call from Bernie to do 3rd cars. And then Red Bull has their customer car team, and Ferrari can set one up too. Making it 18 cars on the grid.

    3. @velocityboy Yea, man. Because a 4 team F1 will be much more awesome. I wonder what will happen when one of those teams decide that they aren’t winning enough and decides to go elsewhere. OMG!!3 teams is even better. All the teams get to be on the podium at each race.. WOOT!!

      1. Really? How many teams are dropping out? How many teams signed the Concorde agreement and left millions of dollars in Bernie’s pockets? They had a chance to get the funds they needed by signing a Concorde agreement that made sense to them and secured their future. They choose not to, then complained that the sport was too expensive. Sorry, but I have no sympathy for them. This situation is of their own making and constantly whining about it is pathetic.

  4. Of course Sauber are also cutting profits, since they cant keep capable drivers like Kobayashi, Perez or Hulkenberg.

  5. The new engine format will ruin F1, just as it is in MotoGP. Just look at the difference between a Merc and a McLaren, factory motors for factory teams. The rule changes are killing the poorer teams, thats why the people who make the rules keep their spots, because they have the power to run teams over financially or target rules according to strengths and weaknesses. Just look at the tire format changes from 2011 to 2013, ridiculous.

  6. “”””That means every team was around the table, every team had a right to vote against it but everything that went through, went through on a unanimous basis.””””
    Horner’s statement is completely irrelevant and dodging the actual issue. The proposals had unanimous votes. But that doesn’t mean that the proposals were about cost cutting. When the big 4 teams are spending several hundreds of millions per year more than the smaller teams, proposals that reduce spending by a few thousands is laughable. Honestly, it is a bit insulting.

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