Formula One splits into two as FOTA announce new breakaway series

After months of bitter words between the sport’s governing body (FIA) and the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) over the controversial cost-cap scheme set to be introduce next year, the eight remaining FOTA teams have announced they are to form their own racing series for 2010.

This shocking news story broke last night on and it seems that Ferrari, McLaren, Renault, BMW, Toyota, Brawn GP, Red Bull and Toro Rosso are set to create their own series independent of Formula 1.

As you can read in this extract below, the reason for the split is FOTA had grown increasingly frustrated with the FIA’s stance against the organisation, and had no option but to create a series of their own.

“The teams cannot continue to compromise on the fundamental values of the sport and have declined to alter their original conditional entries to the 2010 World Championship,” said a statement issued by FOTA after the meeting.

“These teams therefore have no alternative other than to commence the preparation for a new Championship which reflects the values of its participants and partners. This series will have transparent governance, one set of regulations, encourage more entrants and listen to the wishes of the fans, including offering lower prices for spectators worldwide, partners and other important stakeholders.

“The major drivers, stars, brands, sponsors, promoters and companies historically associated with the highest level of motorsport will all feature in this new series.”

So what’s left on the FIA series? Well, next year’s Formula 1 world championship will feature only five confirmed teams: Williams, Force India, Manor Grand Prix, USF1 and Campos Grand Prix. But, we could see the likes of Prodrive and Epsilon Euskadi on the grid to fill up the remaining places.

This split in Formula One is the worst possible outcome between FOTA and the FIA. The negotiations between both parties over the issue of reducing costs dragged on for months and this split is a devastating blow not only for Formula One, but also for the hardcore fans and motor sport in general.

We now face the prospect of a divided world championship next season, with neither of the two resulting series enjoying the strength that Formula 1 has accumulated in its 60-year history. At a time of such economic turmoil, it is a desperate course of action to take.

Not surprisingly, the FIA has blamed factions within FOTA for the failure of the two parties to reach agreement on the future of the sport, following the announcement that there will be a rival series next year. In an extract below, you can sense the bitterness in the press statement.

“The FIA is disappointed but not surprised by FOTA’s inability to reach a compromise in the best interests of the sport,” said the statement.

“It is clear that elements within FOTA have sought this outcome throughout the prolonged period of negotiation and have not engaged in the discussions in good faith.

“The FIA cannot permit a financial arms race in the championship nor can the FIA allow FOTA to dictate the rules of Formula 1.”

This is a sad day in Formula One and yet again the politics of the sport has completely overshadowed the events at this weekend’s British Grand Prix at Silverstone. Racing is what matters to the fans… not this.

22 thoughts to “Formula One splits into two as FOTA announce new breakaway series”

  1. More on this shocking news can be read via these BBC Sport website.

    F1 teams drop breakaway bombshell:

    BBC Radio 5 Live’s David Croft says the announcement by the Formula One Teams’ Association that they plan to set up a rival championship could have huge implications for the sport:

    Alonso would race in rebel series:

  2. Read this F1 Fanatic website on this major news story plus it’s quite interesting to read the comments below.

    Even though this weekend is the final British Grand Prix at Silverstone, the BRDC is considering in hosting a race for the breakaway series next year. Read this Guardian link:

  3. Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has been urged to step forward and broker a peace deal between teams and the FIA to head off the threat of a breakaway championship.

    The eight members of the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) sent shockwaves through F1 on Thursday night when they announced that they were setting up a rival championship for next year.

    More on this news story can be read on the website. Link here:

    In addition, Brawn CEO Nick Fry insists that negotiations between the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) and the FIA were always conducted in good faith, despite claims from the governing body that factions within the teams’ body always wanted to scupper a deal.

    Autosport article –

  4. Motorsport’s ruling body, the FIA, has announced it will be launching legal action against the Formula 1 teams trying to set up a breakaway championship.

    The Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) announced on Thursday night that, after failing to reach an agreement with the FIA, will start its own series next year.

    But the governing body has responded to FOTA with a legal threat, saying the teams, and Ferrari in particular, have binding commitments that they cannot break.

    The FIA also said that it will delay the publication of the 2010 entry list, expected tomorrow.

    “The FIA’s lawyers have now examined the FOTA threat to begin a breakaway series,” said the FIA in a statement.

    “The actions of FOTA as a whole, and Ferrari in particular, amount to serious violations of law including wilful interference with contractual relations, direct breaches of Ferrari’s legal obligations and a grave violation of competition law.

    “The FIA will be issuing legal proceedings without delay.

    “Preparations for the 2010 FIA Formula One World Championship continue but publication of the final 2010 entry list will be put on hold while the FIA asserts its legal rights.”

    Sources: and

  5. Former world champion Kimi Raikkonen says the battle between the FIA and FOTA is not about Formula 1 anymore, but rather a fight between the two bodies’ egos.

    The Formula One Teams’ Association announced yesterday that it will launch its own championship after failing to reach a compromise deal with the FIA over the rules for the 2010 season.

    The governing body has responded by saying it will sue FOTA.

    Ferrari driver Raikkonen admitted it was sad to see the current situation, and he reckons both parties have lost sight of what the fight is really about.

    “Of course it’s sad to see,” Raikkonen told reporters. “This is nothing to do with sport anymore, it’s more politics and more about egos fighting against each other.

    “It’s not really about Formula 1 anymore. It’s about who is going to win and who is going to lose. It’s sad but that’s how it is, and we’ll just see what happens.

    “I don’t know what will happen or where we are going to race, but let’s finish this year then we will know more about next year.”

    The Finn insisted he is ready to follow Ferrari out of Formula 1 if it means racing against the best drivers and teams.

    “For sure we want to have the best drivers and the best teams in the same championship. That’s really what Formula 1 is all about. For sure next year we are going to race somewhere, but I don’t know where.”


    I absolutely agree with Raikkonen. Both the FIA and FOTA are to blame for this political mess. The sport’s governing body, in particular Max Mosley refuses to budge on the controversial £40 million budget cap set to be introduce in 2010. While the manufacturers don’t want to reduce its massive resources/money for the sake of cost cutting. Both need to set aside their differences and resolve this major issue for the sake of the fans and the sport’s reputation.

  6. Holy moly what a mess eh? What a complete joke and this is turning F1 into a right circus. While both FOTA and FIA are both to blame, I think Max is completely to blame for starting all this. You just cannot say to the biggest teams that in less than a year we want you to work on £40m, no re-fueling and all the other rule changes ( plus this years changes ) when the season has already started and only a few months to design the cars etc with no testing cos he banned that too!!!!!!!!!!.

    A the end of the day, I dont think cutting cost that much will be healthy. The teams have said yes to cutting them, but not by that much and so soon. I agree, since F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport and that should never be compromised. Yes small teams will struggle, big deal, it’s been like that for decades.

    I just dont think a £40m budget is at all good for F1. Its just not that kind of sport and it’ll be the death nail as far as what F1 should be. It may make it fairer, but ask anyone who watches it if you should compromise the sport to make it fair, I doubt you’ll get many people voting for that.

    But anyways, this has real danger of collapsing and we may not have Ferrari in any championship next year. FIA think they legally HAVE to race with FIA. You think they might have mentioned that as a threat weeks ago. But if it goes to court, then it’s months before the outcome and Ferrari wont design a car or outfit for both sides. So it’ll be too late to make one when they know who they are racing with.
    That said, they are adamant they wont race with FIA, but I dont know if they’ll go to court, loose and then not race at all. F1 HAS to have Ferrari, but how much does the team really not want to race? IF the other “defectors” definitely breakaway, then Ferarri will go all out and say FU to the FIA. If they loose, will racing with egg on their face be enough for them to ditch F1 racing completely? The more I think about it, yeah I think they will. Whats more if they can prove to the teams that they will quit, it may well seal the deal for the new series.

    Will the other teams still race without Ferrari? If they are in then it’s a no brainer, they are all in. but without the followers for the Big Red Team, may they think twice? Is that holding Ferrari in a way too high a position? Something which is at the heart of this mess. Max and bernie thought they had endless power, but now they KNOW they cannot just wave rules at the teams and they’ll follow. They have suddenly realised that they dont, and I bet rule changes will never be enforced like this ever again. Hopefully, by that, I mean Max will be kicked out in October. Whatever happens, I just dont see him keeping his job. Thank god for that. A positive outcome whatever happens lol.

  7. Thanks for the comment invisiblekid and I agree completely with your viewpoints on the state of Formula One.

    Max Mosley caused this uproar with the idea of reducing the mass amount of money spent by the teams every season to a budget of £40 million. Originally it was set to £30 million but it was seem to low… so an extra £10 million was added to make it a realistic possibility.

    Unfortunately, the FOTA members are still unhappy with this situation and after months of talks between the sport’s governing body and the manufacturers, we have come to this conclusion.

    But will the split take shape next season? FIA president Max Mosley believes it won’t happen. Read the full story here, taken from

    FIA president Max Mosley has dismissed the threat of a breakaway championship as ‘posturing’ by teams, and is confident a compromise settlement will be reached in time for the first race of 2010.

    Following the bombshell announcement made by the eight members of the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) that they were commencing plans for a rival series, Mosley has made it clear that he is not too worried about the situation.

    He believes that eventually the teams will soften their stance, and he thinks it highly unlikely that they will be able to afford to set up a second F1 series.

    “I don’t take it as seriously as some people do because I know that it is all posturing and posing,” Mosley explained in a lengthy interview with the BBC on Friday. “It will all stop sometime between the beginning of 2010 and March 2010, the first race. All this will stop, it will all settle down and everyone will go racing.”

    When asked if he was totally sure there would be a solution that headed off the possibility of two championships, Mosley said: “Absolutely. I am completely confident because in the end people do what it is in their interests to do.

    “It is in the interests of the teams to be in the F1 world championship and there is actually no fundamental or important issue that is stopping them taking part. It is all about personalities and power and who can grab what from whom, which is easy when nothing is at stake but when it gets to the first race and it is make your mind up time, they will be there.”

    Despite the hardline stance adopted by FOTA, Mosley believes that there is little chance of the breakaway reaching fruition – and said it was easy for teams to talk up their plans at this stage of the year.

    “They can be very hard at the moment because it doesn’t actually come to anything until March 2010,” he explained. “So we are nine months away. Everybody can posture and pose, but we all know that when it gets to Melbourne 2010 there will be a F1 world championship and everyone who can be in it will be in it.”

    He added: “Always with these things there is a compromise because they cannot afford not to run in the F1 world championship, and we would be very reluctant to have a Formula 1 world championship without them, and I am talking about the eight teams there.

    “I think some of them will disappear because some of the manufacturers will look at the amount of money being spent, the measures they are having to take within their companies, the people being laid off and accepting government money to keep going, and they are going to find it very difficult to keep pumping hundreds of millions into F1.

    “So I think we will lose one or two or maybe three manufacturer teams, so we will need new teams to make up the space. But the great traditional teams, and I would include Ferrari in that, they need to be there and they will be there for sure. It will get sorted out.”

    As for stepping down on the role of the FIA president, Mosley has even suggested he might stand for re-election! Read the story below:

    FIA president Max Mosley thinks it more likely that he will stand for re-election in October if the controversy engulfing Formula 1 is not settled in time.

    Although there has been widespread speculation in the paddock that teams are keen for him to follow through on his original intention to stand down at the end of his current term, Mosley said on Friday that the threat of a breakaway was actually having the opposite effect in forcing him to stay.

    “I don’t want to go on too long, but the difficulty they are putting me in is that even if I wanted to stop this October, they are making it very difficult for me to do so,” said Mosley in an interview with the BBC.

    “So actually everything they are doing is counterproductive because the people in the FIA are saying we have all this trouble, we are being attacked and you must stay.

    “Whereas if we had peace and I said I would actually like to stop in October, then they are very nice. They all say they want me to stay, but they wouldn’t really mind and someone else would come along.”

    Mosley stated that if him standing down would ensure peace then he would be more than happy to walk away.

    “Absolutely,” he said. “[But] everybody knows it wouldn’t be [peace], because the next person they [FOTA] would want his head, and the person after that, his head, until they got what they wanted which is the power to run the sport away from the FIA. It would be exactly the same with Bernie…”

    He added: “What you cannot do is walk away from an organisation in the middle of a crisis.”

    Mosley also dismissed claims that his dictatorial approach in the FIA was a cause for concern.

    “The idea that it is me is a complete myth,” he explained. “I am the figurehead because I happen to be the president, but I cannot move without the authority of all these different countries. We have 120 different countries and each is represented by the head of motorsport in that country. It is a huge organisation, so the idea that it is somehow me, that is really not the issue.

    “What it is is that they want to take over the governance of the sport from the FIA and run it themselves. They want to take over the money from Bernie and have that for themselves.

    “Well, the first thing they have to do is get rid of me, but then whoever replaced me would be exactly the same – he would defend the interests of the FIA because the championship belongs to them. So, unless they found somebody who was prepared to let it all go, it wouldn’t work. If I dropped dead tomorrow there would be somebody taking exactly the same position.”

  8. The breakaway championship being put together by the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) could be joined by even more teams, with both Campos Racing and Prodrive among outfits strongly linked with the new series.

    While discussions about the rival category have focused on the eight current teams, sources suggest that a number of outfits have opened dialogue to find out more about the new championship.

    McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh confirmed that FOTA was willing to accept more entrants to bolster its grid next year – as he was asked specifically about Lola and Prodrive.

    “I think that certainly eight teams will be enough, but we would welcome any new teams or existing teams for that matter, and certainly there has been an expression of interest from some of the teams you mentioned,” explained Whitmarsh.

    “I think a lot of teams want to be racing against the Ferraris, against the Red Bulls, the Brawns and hopefully ourselves.

    “Formula 1 has not done a good job in my view at developing a number of teams that compete, at developing a series that the fans want, and there is a lot opportunity to do a better job – to have some fresh energy.

    “Whilst inevitably there is some sadness in a day like today, I think you have to be optimistic about the future. And sometimes out of these challengers are new eras and new opportunities, and we have to be positive.

    “We’ve had already in the last few hours quite a lot of interest from some other teams that want to be part of the new series, and we are going to do everything we can to encourage them to be a part of it. Just as FOTA has already demonstrated its assistance to retaining teams and assisting the independent teams – that has to be part of the ethos of any organization.”

    The relevance of what the fans want was acknowledged by Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner, who apologised on behalf of the teams for the mess the sport found itself in.

    “I only sympathize with the public, who must be as F1 fans confused and to a certain degree dismayed with what is currently going on. We have got a wonderful championship this year and Silverstone’s last F1 grand prix and to have politics that quite simply are difficult for the general public to comprehend and understand.

    “F1 should be about what happens on the track. It is taking up far too much of not only our time but other people’s time.”


  9. Surely the new teams are not in a position to move the to new rival series!?

    I fear this maybe just BS to help bolster the breaking teams bravado. I just cannot see any of the new teams could be allowed to move. A done deal has been made no? Would they even consider joining F1 before the supposed budget cut? The new group would of course abolish budget cuts wouldn’t they? So it’s not like they could challenge the big boys. But then we said that about Brawn and well we all know how wrong we were about them!

  10. It does all stinks with all this bitter FOTA/FIA war and even Red Bull Racing’s team principal Christian Horner thinks the biggest victim are the fans. That’s why he apologised on behalf of the FOTA teams for the mess the sport found itself in. Read the previous comment above.

    As for new teams joining the FOTA series, why not? New outfits such as the likes of Prodrive would rather compete against the Ferraris, McLarens, Brawns and Red Bulls then the unknowns (to be fair Williams F1 is a good team but take sides with the FIA series compare to the manufacturers is a shame). For better racing and competition. Quality is what matters.

    Right, more on this controversial split and even Max Mosley is not expecting quick resolution. Read the full story below, taken from

    FIA president Max Mosley believes the row between the governing body and teams will not get resolved for some time, after blaming a power grab by Flavio Briatore for fuelling the current controversy.

    With motor racing’s governing body poised to begin legal action next week against Ferrari and the Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) over their bid to launch a breakaway series, Mosley sees no quick solution to the row.

    However, he thinks there is no doubt that the teams will capitulate and sign up to F1 eventually.

    “What will happen now is that this discussion will continue for a while and then at some point we will find that when it starts to get important to know what is actually happening, which won’t be for some time, we will find some of the teams, the FOTA teams, will then come into the championship,” he said in an interview with the BBC.

    “Other teams will already be there. And how long that will take is very difficult to predict because people take entrenched positions and so on, but nobody wants this.”

    Mosley believes the stand off between teams and the FIA has been caused in part by the desire of individuals to take control of running the sport – and he singles out Renault boss Briatore in particular.

    “It is not greed, it is more about power,” he said about the row. “There are one or two individuals… well there is one individual who fancies himself as the Bernie [Ecclestone]. Whether he could do the job or not I don’t know.”

    When asked to identify the individual he was referring to, Mosley said: “I think Flavio Briatore sees himself as the Bernie. He is fully entitled to that view, but I think Bernie would feel if he wants my business, or CVC’s business, then he should come and buy it, he can’t just take it.

    “As far as the governing body is concerned, I don’t know whether any of them actually want to make the rules, because they can never agree on the rules. And when they do agree on them, they disagree on what they mean.

    “The famous double diffuser was entirely drawn up by the teams and then we had to settle who was right in their interpretation of the rules which they had drawn up. There is not a lot of future in that. This is what it is all about – certain people would like certain positions and you can understand that, but there are correct and incorrect ways to get it.”

    Speaking about his feelings on the legal action that the FIA is about to launch against teams, Mosley said: “The thing is we have got very good legal advice and it is very strong and very clear, so we are very confident.”

  11. Quite refreshing to hear these comments made by two Formula One champions, Michael Schumacher and Fernando Alonso. You can read their views below – courtesy from

    Former world champion Michael Schumacher says he has grown tired of the political wrangling that is overshadowing Formula 1 – but believes a breakaway championship is becoming a realistic proposition.

    Schumacher hopes that the current controversy caused by a split between F1 teams and the FIA comes to an end soon, as he thinks it is damaging for the sport.

    “I find it extremely unfortunate that in Formula 1 recently there is so much talk about politics and so little about sport,” Schumacher wrote on his own website.

    “I really hope those political games will soon be ended – they were already getting on my nerves during all my career. Because in the end doesn’t it all come down to one simple fact: Motorsport is a great sport, Formula 1 has always been the best of it and has to remain the pinnacle.

    “Formula 1 has always been the platform for the best drivers and the best teams. This is what is admired all over the world; this is what everybody wants to see. But if this is constantly put into question due to permanent uncertainty of rules it is maybe better to really defend that value, leave and establish it somewhere else in a reasonable way.”

    Schumacher says he is baffled by the fact that the teams and the FIA could not agree on rule changes that would have secured the long term future of the sport.

    “It is simply not understandable that all teams share their view on how to approach the reforms and the governing body still wants to implement something else,” he said.

    “Of course this seems unimaginable in the first moment, but this time all big teams stick together. This makes a new championship much more realistic. It is starting to be a real alternative to me. As a motorsport fan I want to watch the best show which is where the best drivers and the best teams compete with each other.”

    Two-time world champion Fernando Alonso fears the row between the FIA and FOTA is leading to the death of Formula 1.

    “Yes, more or less, yes,” said Alonso on Friday when asked if Formula 1 was dead.

    “It keeps going but obviously with the same engine for everybody, small teams, nobody knows those teams, nobody knows the drivers… So it’s like A1GP, GP2, so it’s a very nice category but no one cares.”

    The Spaniard admitted he was sorry to hear the news that no agreement was reached between the FIA and the Formula One Teams’ Association, but he believes FOTA’s breakaway championship can be a strong one.

    “It was sad news, for sure, because we all hoped for a solution in the last moment and it didn’t happen. So now it’s a new thing,” he added.

    “A new category will arrive and Formula 1 may disappear, so we need to go the best category which at the moment is the FOTA one, with the best teams in the world and the best drivers in the world. I think it can be a good one.

    “Obviously it’s my opinion, but I’m sure 99 percent of the drivers will agree with me.”

    He added: “Everybody is losing. The teams are losing, the FIA is not losing anything because they don’t put the money. The drivers we are losing, but I think the worst thing is for Formula 1. But we’ll see.

    “The new category seems very attractive, for the fans as well, with maybe better prices for tickets, and things like that. We’ll become a new category, a new Formula 1. I believe that things can be done better than in Formula 1, so the new category maybe can improve a couple of things.”

    Alonso, however, reckons there is still a chance that the row could be settled in the near future.

    “It keeps going. The entry list from the FIA is not arriving tomorrow because there are no teams to put on the list, so maybe the will wait a couple of weeks and everything goes back to normal and we see the FOTA teams running in Formula 1 maybe,” Alonso said.

    “It’s not over, but it’s not the teams’ problem now. They did the maximum so it’s up to the FIA. I think they had two months to do it. Now maybe it’s too late. We’ll see.”

    The former champion made it clear again that he would follow his Renault team into a new championship.

    “Absolutely, one hundred percent.”

  12. Personally I think it may turn out to be a good thing. The big teams have really suffered this year and it has been because of the rule changes. I think we have a chance to see double the races and the talk of lower ticket fees is all good. Let it be. Competition can be a good thing.

  13. It is chaotic but will ultimately be a good thing for the sport as it will either lead to a new beginning or a sweeping away of the despotic Mosley/Eccelstone rule.

    I think Mosley is learning a hard lesson, don’t go after Ferrari as they are bigger(whether people like it or not) than F1. It’s also an indictment of the F1 policy of staging races in countries where only a despotic ruler is interested, and they are only in it for the prestige. Time to bring F1 or it’s successor back to Europe’s tracks that have been forgotten in the last few years by Mosley and Eccelstone instead of these dead spaces in Bahrain, Turkey, China and Malaysia.

  14. This situation has its roots 4 years ago around the time of “Indygate” in 2005. Many of the teams were then unhappy with the share of the money distributed by the FOM and similarly threatened to breakaway. The difference was that Max & Bernie was able to “divide and conquer” the rebellion by secretly getting Ferrari on its side by (what we’re now told) giving the Italian team a special veto on rules & regulations ( and let’s face it, probably more besides!) . Now that Ferrari realises that this veto isn’t worth the paper it’s written on and has hopped over the fence to FOTA. The balance of political power in F1 has now shifted dramatically towards FOTA. The teams ( and some individuals within them) are realising this is a once in a bluemoon opportunity to persue their own agenda as well. The £40m cap question is now secondary. Max has already retreated several times over the figure ( the last being £100m), as long as a timescale for lowering the cap can be agreed. Further concessions like re-implementing the Concorde agreement also fails to pacify those calling for “better governance”. So the current agenda would probably be “removing Mosley” at the top, followed by “more money from the commercial earnings” from Bernie, only then maybe the budget cap.
    More concessions/carrots are proffered almost every day by the FIA (abandoning the 2 tiered regulations according to budget ; guranteeing the British GP…………). All those retreats shows how weak the FIA’s position really is. Unless they can once again prise Ferrari away from the other teams the FIA will have to all but capitulate in time. I don’t believe there will be a breakaway series for 2010……… they don’t need to because FOTA will get more or less what they want in the end………

  15. Thanks for the comments everyone. I really appreciate the feedback on this difficult subject matter on the future of the sport. In terms of the split, I know we would like to see it won’t happen and hope it can be resolve soon. But It seems the FOTA members and pressing ahead in preparing the new series as early as next week! Read the full story below – taken from

    The Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) will begin formal preparations for its new championship as early as next week, after Ross Brawn made it clear the teams were focusing flat out on their breakaway series rather than finding a compromise deal with the FIA.

    Although FIA president Max Mosley believes that teams will eventually capitulate and sign up to join F1 next year, Brawn is adamant that FOTA is only thinking of going its own way right now.

    When asked if he believed that a compromise would be put together that resulted in teams signings up to F1, Brawn said: “No that won’t happen, I mean the decision has been made by FOTA. FOTA now has to press ahead with its ideas and plans. We can’t wait until January and decide which way it is going to go. As each day passes, and each week passes then the options for reconciliation will reduce.”

    Amid suggestions that television companies and promoters have already been contacted regarding the breakaway championship, Brawn says that work on framing the technical regulations for the championship will begin in earnest next week.

    “Those meetings start next week and we will arrive at a technical specification that we think offers the best racing and is cost effective,” he explained. “Things start next week and we will start to put some more detail to the proposal.”

    Despite the stand-off between teams and the FIA, Brawn confirmed that ironically motor racing’s governing body would likely be the regulator of the new series.

    “You would need a regulatory body,” he said. “In fact ironically I think the agreement with the European Commission is that the FIA have to offer to do that to any competitive series that wants to set up, so the FIA have to offer to be at least the regulatory body.

    “They may not be the body that sets the rules, they can be determined by some other mechanism. But if you want, the FIA can run the series for you. They can provide the stewards, the scruntineers and things of that nature. So that’s available if FOTA wanted to take it up.”

    Although Brawn’s stance appears to point towards there being no plans to get the FIA back around the table to discuss saving F1 next year, other team bosses are more conciliatory in their approach.

    McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh said it would be foolish of teams not to accept an offer they are happy with if it was put forward by the FIA.

    “I don’t think FOTA rules anything out,” said Whitmarsh. “At the moment, as we said earlier in the week, the team were presented with a deadline and, faced with that deadline, the teams did request that there was more time to find a solution.

    “So within that deadline the decision was taken, but I think the teams are open to discuss with anybody how we go motor racing next year.”

  16. Formula 1 teams have rejected suggestions that they are near to a compromise deal with the FIA over the future of the sport – as they insist they are wholly committed to their breakaway plans.

    FIA president Max Mosley said at Silverstone on Sunday that he felt the teams and the governing body were ‘very close’ to a resolution that would avert the threat of a rival series in 2010.

    But team principals have insisted that no progress has been made in their discussions with the FIA over the British Grand Prix weekend and in fact, AUTOSPORT understands that FOTA is planning to hold a meeting next Thursday to begin formal selection of championship promoters, technical regulations and a calendar.

    Renault boss Flavio Briatore, who arrived at Silverstone on Sunday with Bernie Ecclestone and Max Mosley, reckons that the time for talking with the FIA was now over.

    “We are using so many words, and now is enough,” he told AUTOSPORT. “We have made our statement and this is very clear – that is it.

    “We will have it [the breakaway championship] ready in the next few weeks. We have been planning for several weeks already. We want a Formula 1 championship organised by FOTA. There has been no change in the last two days. I do not want to make anymore statements.”

    Toyota F1 team president and FOTA vice-chairman John Howett said that initial feedback from fans suggested huge support for the new series – which had galvanized a belief among the teams that they were doing the right thing.

    “I think if you look at the overwhelming support we have got from the public, ultimately now there has to be a fairly significant move from the federation,” Howett told AUTOSPORT in reaction to Mosley’s comments.

    “Overall we have a clear position and I think we made numerous concessions to achieve some sort of compromise. Now, we have made the decision, and at the moment we are moving forwards very positively on that vector.”

    McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh, when asked about Mosley’s suggestions a deal was close, said: “No, I don’t think so. It is difficult to make progress on a Sunday when you are concentrating on going motor racing.

    “I think obviously we have to see what happens in the coming few weeks but I think it is not a situation that we set out to achieve. We have got to make sure that we concentrate on keeping all of the teams together and making sure that we are racing together in the premier form of motor racing.”

    He added: “FOTA has a number of meetings next week and we’ve got to look at the process by which we appoint people who are selling the media, looking at the way in which we engage circuits. There has been a lot of interest in working with us, and given our situation we are obliged to go forward with those arrangements and that planning.”

    FOTA has chosen to schedule its get-together for Thursday because it is the day after the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council meeting, where news of Mosley’s future plans could be revealed.

    Mosley had been expected to stand down when his term ends in October but there are mounting suggestions that he could stand for another term because of the current controversy in the sport.

    News about the FIA’s plans for legal action against the teams is also expected in the next few days, with perhaps a possibility the court threat will be held off if teams are willing to talk about finding a solution to the row.

    Red Bull Racing team principal Christian Horner said it would be foolish of teams to totally ignore the FIA, if there was the chance of a deal being found.

    “I don’t think the door should ever be shut to discussions as long as they are constructive,” he told AUTOSPORT. “If the president is prepared to do that then it is good news.”


  17. Max Mosley has already made his intentions to stand again for re-election as president of the FIA clear back in February :

    His offer to stand down was made back when he was embroiled in the “Spanky-gate” affair in order to placate his critics and to give himself time to re-group.
    As soon as he felt his grip on power was secure again over the winter he had changed his tune, thus mirroring what he did at the last FIA presidency election.

    I really don’t think that the FOTA teams’ recent militancy (they also forced the withdrawal of the new scoring system in March) is a coincidence – if Max won’t go by himself , he’ll have to be cut down to size one way or another……..

  18. Since the bug for FOTA and the FIA are the rules changes and IF Bernie gives them the option for 5 years commitment on on spending caps, I just cannot see them leaving.
    To organise a whole new series, design cars, get TV coverage, track permissions, rules, sponsorship and anything else I’ve forgotten, all in less than a years time, AND go to court?!!!
    Nah just dont see it. If they do this, and have something running for next year, there’s a massive risk it’ll have more controversy than we have now! Yes all the teams may work together out of FIA, but on the track it’s still the same pressures to apease sponsors, and get championship points. Although FIA cock about with their rules, rules is rules, and FOTO GP or whatever will still nedd the same ones, and the teams will still argue and moan about desisions. They can all huff and puff in the past, but money made them back then and will do whoever they race with.

  19. Well I say rule changes, but they are pi**ed at Max and Bernie too. Yeah forgot how mad they are at them too. Well my point still stands, but again, that’s not accounting for the “strings” attached to the 5 year no budget rule.

  20. Thanks for the additional comments invisiblekid and Wai. Great to hear your opinions on this subject matter. Though the issue of a F1 split in 2010 is now effectively over with the announcement that a peace deal has been agreed between the FIA and FOTA. Read on for the full story – taken from BBC Sport:

    An agreement has been reached between Formula 1’s governing body and the teams to prevent a breakaway series, says FIA president Max Mosley.

    The two parties had been engulfed in a bitter row over planned budgetary and technical changes for the 2010 season.

    But it appears a resolution has now been found and, as part of the deal, Mosley has agreed not to stand for re-election as president.

    “There will be no split. We have agreed to a reduction of costs,” added Mosley.

    “There will be one F1 championship but the objective is to get back to the spending levels of the early 90s within two years.”

    F1 surpremo Bernie Ecclestone added that he is “very happy common sense has prevailed”, following a meeting of 120 members of the FIA in Paris aimed at resolving the crisis.

    Ahead of the meeting, Mosley had insisted that he would not step down as part of any potential agreement and might even seek re-election as head of world motor sport.

    He hit out at what he described as “wholly unjustified criticism” of the FIA, adding: “It is for the FIA membership, and the FIA membership alone, to decide on its democratically elected leadership, not the motor industry and still less the individuals the industry employs to run its Formula 1 teams.”

    However, it appears Mosley has now agreed to move aside when his fourth term as FIA president ends in October, saying: “I will not be up for re-election, now we have peace.”

    Furthermore, writs that had been threatened against Ferrari and the other teams in the Formula 1 Teams Association (Fota) – McLaren, BMW Sauber, Renault, Toyota, Red Bull Racing, Toro Rosso and Brawn GP – are likely to be shelved.

    The agreement ends two months of wrangling since Mosley announced after a World Council meeting at the end of April that a voluntary £40m budget cap would be imposed from next season – a plan that prompted a rebellion from eight teams, with Fota announcing on Thursday they were planning a rival series.

    “It’s come as a bit of a surprise, given that Fota were planning to meet in Bologna on Thursday to discuss their plans for the breakaway championship,” reported BBC sports news correspondent James Munro from Paris.

    “But what we got today after a meeting of World Motorsport Council was an impromptu press conference and Mosley began by saying there will be no split, there will be one championship.

    “He said that over the course of the negotiations he had been able to secure guarantees from the teams who were threatening to get away that they would try to reign back the levels of their spending to the levels they were spending in the early 90s.

    “It was him that had come up with the idea that next season all teams would have a budget cap of about £40m, but there has clearly been a trade-off as he has also agreed to do what he says was always the plan – stand down as president of the FIA this October.”

    More on this story can be read via Link:

  21. The breakaway threat is now over. Read the full story below – taken from

    The Formula One Teams’ Association (FOTA) will officially call off its plans for a rival championship tomorrow after reaching a breakthrough deal with the FIA.

    Following last-ditch talks between FIA president Max Mosley, FOTA chairman Luca di Montezemolo and F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone, an agreement was reached that commits the teams to the sport until 2012.

    FOTA members had been set to press ahead with breakaway plans in the meeting in Bologna tomorrow, but following its victory in getting the FIA and Ecclestone to agree to terms that keeps its eight members in F1, it will now rubber stamp final cost-cutting regulations for 2010 and call off its breakaway instead.

    The deal between the FIA and FOTA was confirmed on Wednesday afternoon, when the FIA announced that its planned budget cap for 2010 had been scrapped, and instead FOTA-proposed cost-cutting regulations will be introduced.

    In a bid to help new teams, technical assistance will be offered to Campos Meta, Manor Grand Prix and Team US F1 by major outfits.

    The FIA statement said: “As part of this agreement, the teams will, within two years, reduce the costs of competing in the championship to the level of the early 1990s.

    “The manufacturer teams have agreed to assist the new entries for 2010 by providing technical assistance.”

    As part of the deal with FOTA, the teams’ association has agreed to recognise the FIA’s position as the sport’s governing body, adding that a new Concorde Agreement has been agreed in principle to keep all of the teams in F1 to 2012 and, upon re-negotiation, it is hoped beyond.

    “The manufacturer teams have further agreed to the permanent and continuing role of the FIA as the sport’s governing body,” added the statement. “They have also committed to the commercial arrangements for the FIA Formula 1 World Championship until 2012 and have agreed to renegotiate and extend this contract before the end of that period.

    “All teams will adhere to an upgraded version of the governance provisions of the 1998 Concorde Agreement.”

    Furthermore, with it clear that FOTA is not trying to usurp the FIA’s authority, FIA president Max Mosley has agreed to not stand for re-election in October.

    In addition, all 13 teams including the new Campos Meta, Manor Grand Prix and Team US F1 outfits will be on the grid next season. See the link for the official entry list:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *