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Montezemolo: Ferrari could quit F1 for Le Mans in 2020


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#1 bonneville

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:08

WSJ

http://online.wsj.co...-one-1402679223

Quote:

Montezemolo also complained about the restricted—some have said strangled—sound of the new engines. "People watch racing to be entertained," he said. "No one wants to watch a driver save gas or tires. They want to see them push from here to there. It's sport, yes, but also a show."

Montezemolo suggested that his company could instead pursue endurance racing of the type practiced at Le Mans, perhaps as soon as 2020. Ferrari competed at the top levels of sports-car racing from 1947 to 1973, winning Le Mans nine times, but left the sport at the end of 1972, with founder Enzo Ferrari deciding to concentrate resources on F1. Ferrari has been a continuous presence on the Grand Prix grid for more than a half-century.

"Of course," Montezemolo said, "we cannot do sports-car racing and Formula One. It's not possible."

End

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#2 TennisUK

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:16

If he doesn't like drivers saving fuel or tyres I don't think endurance racing is going to make him very happy either.

Perhaps if Ferrari were winning in f1 right now he might think about f1 differently?

#3 Tomecek

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:21

http://formula1.ferr...ormula-1-future

 

 

 

Some elements of the media have suggested Ferrari would quit Formula 1 to concentrate on the Le Mans 24 Hours and Endurance racing. This is a bit of a stretch based on President Luca di Montezemolo reiterating that Formula 1 needs to evolve and renew itself, while also admitting that there is a unique attraction to the 24 Hour race. To say that after 2020, Ferrari could quit Formula 1 to concentrate on Le Mans and the Endurance championship takes his words to extremes. Plus of course, there’s nothing to stop Ferrari upping the ante and competing in both disciplines. So it’s just pure speculation.


#4 Kenstate

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:23

even if f1 is evolving its racing with every new iteration of regulation more towards energy conservation, i sure as hell could not sit through a 6 hour+ race.



#5 OSX

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:24

Luca is just reminding the folks in charge of the future of F1 that they shouldn't take their participation for granted, which he does each and every time that Ferrari isn't winning...



#6 Kenstate

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:29

Luca is just reminding the folks in charge of the future of F1 that they shouldn't take their participation for granted, which he does each and every time that Ferrari isn't winning...

 

f1 governing body can only do so much. rig a race here, ignore a penalty there.....but at the end of the day, the onus falls on ferrari themselves to build a fast enough car to even be in contention.......which they haven't had for about 4 years now



#7 David Lightman

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:30

Same old BS we get from him every time Ferrari aren't winning. It's pathetic. I say this to the driver's who are moaning too, if you don't like F1, go and do something else.



#8 TennisUK

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:35

The 'on again', 'off again' press conference scheduled today for an hour before the race (currently 'off') supposedly announcing Ferrari's return (perhaps only to Garage 56 rather than P1) is a great example of the brinkmanship Ferrari like to play with f1. Just like Indy car in the 1980s...

I would love a Ferrari LMP1 but Luca is making a pretty ham-fisted attempt to get what he wants in f1 by threats. But the substance of his threats indicate they are either empty or that he is clueless about sportscar racing.

#9 Diablobb81

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:47

Bye! :wave: :wave: :wave:

 

Good luck not designing a good engine in WEC too.



#10 OSX

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:50

f1 governing body can only do so much. rig a race here, ignore a penalty there.....but at the end of the day, the onus falls on ferrari themselves to build a fast enough car to even be in contention.......which they haven't had for about 4 years now

Well, it is easier to blame the system rather than yourself. And if you are as arrogant, and as thoroughly pampered, as Luca it's only natural. Natural but by now quite tiresome...

 



#11 kosmos

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 06:52

I agree with him that this F1 is not good (because regulations), but he wanted F1 to be less about aero and more about engine, he got it and he failed. He should shut up, win a championship and then quit F1, this way he will have more credibility.



#12 pingu666

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 07:19

sportscar tyres can normaly take the abuse, and dont require the babying of modern f1 tyres.

few years ago in the pug vs audi they where doing qualifying pace (sometimes faster than pole!) for alot of the race



#13 f1RacingForever

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 07:20

He's just flexing his political muscles. Its his job like him or hate him. Wont get him far though.

#14 Cyanide

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 07:55

He'll change his mind if Ferrari manages to pull itself together. Might be as soon as next year. 

 

Luca is adaptable, if the situation is bad for his team, he's not satisfied with F1. Nothing new here. 



#15 F1matt

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 07:57

Same old BS we get from him every time Ferrari aren't winning. It's pathetic. I say this to the driver's who are moaning too, if you don't like F1, go and do something else.





This sums it up, an old tactic used by Ferrari when things aren't going their way, does anyone remember when they mocked up an Indycar when they were considering leaving F1 because Williams and Mclaren were winning everything????

#16 2014wdc

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:20

as a Ferrari fan i will love to "see" F1 without Ferrari...

 

Probably F1 will die forever, Ferrari will lose something , but they will survive



#17 Disgrace

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:29

At last, the annual "Ferrari threatens to quit F1" thread. I was sure something was missing.



#18 PayasYouRace

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:45

This sums it up, an old tactic used by Ferrari when things aren't going their way, does anyone remember when they mocked up an Indycar when they were considering leaving F1 because Williams and Mclaren were winning everything????

 

Yes. They threatened to leave because they wanted a 1.2 litre turbo formula instead of a 3.5 litre atmo. They didn't get their way, but the threat was enough that FISA allowed all engine configurations. FISA wanted a V8 formula from 1989, but with Ferrari's threat they allowed V12s and others too.



#19 midgrid

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:48

History repeats itself: the unraced Ferrari 637 Indycar:

 

I68DaeE.jpg



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#20 garoidb

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:49

It would be great to see them properly back in sportscar racing, competing in the top category for the wins in the premier events. Personally, I would like to see sportscar racing strengthened so this would help. It would also be a good place for Alonso to go after his retirement from F1 (which should happen around that time).

 

However, he is not serious. 



#21 garoidb

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:52

as a Ferrari fan i will love to "see" F1 without Ferrari...

 

Probably F1 will die forever, Ferrari will lose something , but they will survive

 

Sportscar racing would become the premier road racing discipline, not just because of Ferrari alone but because their presence would also attract other manufacturers (on top of those already competing).



#22 Ferrari2183

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 08:57

Montezemolo is right but instead of mouthing off he should just announce their withdrawal already. F1 is a shadow of its former self. Restrictive aero rules, restrictive engine rules, restrictive testing/no testing, restrictive scaled wind tunnel rules, resource restriction...

You can call it sour grapes on Montezemolo's behalf if you want but he is right in that F1 needs a rethink.

#23 PayasYouRace

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 09:07

Ineteresting that the year specified is 2020. F1 would likely be looking at a new engine formula by then.



#24 10e10

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 09:58

While I agree that there are currently too many restrictions in f1 rules (I understand that small teams don't have much to spend but "if you have to ask how much you can't afford it") and they need to clear that, it's the almost annual "Ferrari is retiring from f1" threat. However, he has a point, the WEC looks much more developed than f1 right now, with the 3 lmp1 teams using 3 different kind of engines, something that I would love to see back in f1. What was the point in having a new engine formula where they are not developed? 



#25 Fastcake

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 09:59

Ineteresting that the year specified is 2020. F1 would likely be looking at a new engine formula by then.


Indeed. Perhaps there are already conversations in the paddock concerning future engine regulations, and this is merely Monty trying to prevent the discussion of anything he doesn't want.

I'll be surprised if anyone really takes these threats from Ferrari seriously. I suggest someone sends Ferrari a copy of the Boy who cried Wolf.

#26 ensign14

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:12

As a reminder:

 

2004

2008

2009

2010

2011 (April)

2011 (November)

 

And remember, they're not bluffing.



#27 Henri Greuter

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:15

This sums it up, an old tactic used by Ferrari when things aren't going their way, does anyone remember when they mocked up an Indycar when they were considering leaving F1 because Williams and Mclaren were winning everything????

That Indycar project was much more serious than generally is assumed. Ferrari was much closer to actually race that car than many will believe. The story about it being built only to blackmail fia to get v12s in f1 too is not the only reason why the project was cancelled in the final minute.

 

henrt


Edited by Henri Greuter, 14 June 2014 - 10:29.


#28 2014wdc

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:25

Sportscar racing would become the premier road racing discipline, not just because of Ferrari alone but because their presence would also attract other manufacturers (on top of those already competing).

very true



#29 Clatter

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:34

Sportscar racing would become the premier road racing discipline, not just because of Ferrari alone but because their presence would also attract other manufacturers (on top of those already competing).

It really wouldn't.



#30 Clatter

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:39

That Indycar project was much more serious than generally is assumed. Ferrari was much closer to actually race that car than many will believe. The story about it being built only to blackmail fia to get v12s in f1 too is not the only reason why the project was cancelled in the final minute.

 

henrt

But it didn't and they didn't. Actions speak louder than words and there is a complete lack of action to back up their words.



#31 ali.unal

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:40

Ferrari denies Montezemolo threat to quit F1

http://www.jamesalle...eat-to-quit-f1/

 

Yesterday Ferrari distanced itself from such suggestions, “This is a bit of a stretch based on President Luca di Montezemolo reiterating that Formula 1 needs to evolve and renew itself, while also admitting that there is a unique attraction to the 24 Hour race.

“To say that after 2020, Ferrari could quit Formula 1 to concentrate on Le Mans and the Endurance championship takes his words to extremes. Plus of course, there’s nothing to stop Ferrari upping the ante and competing in both disciplines. So it’s just pure speculation.”

 


Edited by ali.unal, 14 June 2014 - 10:41.


#32 Cyanide

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:40

Montezemolo acts like a teenager undergoing puberty. 

 

"Oh guys, look at us, we're still important! Don't ignore us, WE'RE IMPORTANT!"



#33 BRG

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:45

Luca is channelling the spirit of Enzo. Scarcely a season went by without Enzo threatening to take his ball away to play elsewhere. Nice to see this respect for tradition.

#34 BRG

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 10:45

Luca is channelling the spirit of Enzo. Scarcely a season went by without Enzo threatening to take his ball away to play elsewhere. Nice to see this respect for tradition.

#35 MrPodium

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:06

Sportscar racing would become the premier road racing discipline, not just because of Ferrari alone but because their presence would also attract other manufacturers (on top of those already competing).

 

You mean like Honda returning to F1 because of the new engine regulations, or Renault not pulling out because the V8 technology was no longer relevant? Oh wait....

The FIA were originally pushing for a four cylinder configuration, and guess who complained the most?

http://www.formula1b...er-engine-plan/

And before that, they threatened to pull out of the sport in 2009.


So basically, as other posters have mentioned, Montezemelo is acting like Timmy Timpson (older Viz readers may recollect). Sure it will be a shame if the red cars don't line up on the grid, but Ferrari aren't F1, and F1 isn't Ferrari.



#36 Seanspeed

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:20

Where's the actual quote where he says this? :/

Anyways, I understand his frustrations over the limited engine development and I don't want F1 to be ALL about efficiency and thankfully it isn't like that at all. We still get a very real and competitive form of racing, no matter how many so-called 'purists' say otherwise. If people complain about tire saving and fuel saving or whatever, then by god, don't ever watch sports car racing.

#37 Seanspeed

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:23

Sportscar racing would become the premier road racing discipline, not just because of Ferrari alone but because their presence would also attract other manufacturers (on top of those already competing).

Nope. Ferrari aren't that powerful. And endurance racing isn't appealing for most people. I certainly wouldn't ever start watching it. Dull as dishwater 99% of the time and you have to stick around for hours and hours and hours and hours just to get a few moments of good action.

Its a technical exercise more than anything. I far prefer a more digestable, easily viewable sprint race where a 20 second gap isn't considered 'close racing'.

Edited by Seanspeed, 14 June 2014 - 11:24.


#38 Massa

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:23

If he doesn't like drivers saving fuel or tyres I don't think endurance racing is going to make him very happy either.

Perhaps if Ferrari were winning in f1 right now he might think about f1 differently?

 

Nobody have to save fuel or tyres in Le Mans. It is a sprint race nowadays.



#39 johnmhinds

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:27

Has nobody ever asked him why they aren't already doing both?

 

Why is a big company like Ferrari having to limit itself to either only F1 or LMP1 in the first place?

 

They should have official teams in all the major championships IMO.



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#40 P123

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:28

Sportscar racing would become the premier road racing discipline, not just because of Ferrari alone but because their presence would also attract other manufacturers (on top of those already competing).


It wouldn't. Ferrari's presence gives some kudos, but it does not attract other manufacturers to F1, nor keep them there.

#41 zold

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 11:35

Nope. Ferrari aren't that powerful. And endurance racing isn't appealing for most people. I certainly wouldn't ever start watching it. Dull as dishwater 99% of the time and you have to stick around for hours and hours and hours and hours just to get a few moments of good action.

Its a technical exercise more than anything. I far prefer a more digestable, easily viewable sprint race where a 20 second gap isn't considered 'close racing'.

 

Ferrari is the most powerful brand in the world. That cannot be ignored. They may be a bunch of conniving snake-oil salesmen but where they go, the unwashed follow.

Sportscar racing has been getting stronger and stronger in the last few years. The 24-hour race today may well see record attendance numbers, which Radio Le Mans attributed to the Porsche/Webber effect. Therefore a return by Ferrari would undoubtedly have an equal, if not greater effect on the exposure of Endurance Racing.

 

As for your views on the races themselves, perhaps you should watch an hour of endurance racing back-to-back with an hour of F1.



#42 shonguiz

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 12:06

He can only blame him self and other top teams for such restrictive regulations. The only way F1 would go back to it's former self is through buget cap.

#43 wj_gibson

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 12:16

Ferrari made similar sorts of comment during previous lulls (1973, when they even missed the odd race because their car was so useless) and in 1992.

 

This nonsense is just a ruse to scare the FIA into changing the rules.



#44 Seanspeed

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 12:27

So not a single other person has realized he didnt actually say this?

Does this not matter to people?

#45 Risil

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 12:30

Ferrari quit F1 over fuel-saving hybrid regulations, to do fuel-saving hybrid racing at Le Mans? Interesting interpretation.

 

Ferrari will probably be in the top class at Le Mans by the end of the decade but it would be extremely surprising for them to do it instead of F1. Sam Collins says Mclaren have also done a bit of work on an LMP1 car, so unless they're also looking at pulling out of F1 I don't see why this is Gotterdammerung-level news.

 

I believe the real story is the battle within Ferrari is whether they can afford to take focus off the struggling F1 programme in order to race Porsche (unlike Mercedes and Renault, a direct rival in the marketplace) at Le Mans. Believe one of the first decisions Todt made after taking charge at Ferrari was cutting back the 333SP sportscar project.

 

If Ferrari's threats are carrying more weight this time, it's a reflection that F1 is weaker than it used to be. The sport can't really afford a botched Ecclestone replacement in the style of CART post-Andrew Craig or Man Utd post-Ferguson.

 

Also the no-engine-development rule, which in practice is an only-allowed-to-develop-your-engine-if-you-complain-loudly-and-publicly-enough, is insane.


Edited by Risil, 14 June 2014 - 12:31.


#46 ensign14

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 12:38

He can only blame him self and other top teams for such restrictive regulations. The only way F1 would go back to it's former self is through buget cap.

 

The budget cap would mean that teams could not rely on out-spending the opposition, by trying 10 options when other teams can only afford 1, and guaranteeing getting the right result.

 

Ferrari objected to the budget cap.

 

It's almost as if di Montezemolo doesn't think Ferrari has the intelligence to beat other teams if they are all on a level playing field.

 

Although, given that Ferrari has more money than the church, one of the two best drivers in F1, and an ex-champ, and yet are still nowhere near a win, perhaps he has a point.

 

People rag on Marussia and Caterham for being at the back, but given their budgets they're doing a terrific job.  In terms of achievement for resource, Ferrari are the worst team in the sport right now.

 

Perhaps LdM needs to focus on that rather than making another specious threat to quit because they're not coping.



#47 TennisUK

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 12:54

Nobody have to save fuel or tyres in Le Mans. It is a sprint race nowadays.


Nope. The entire strategy for Porsche and Toyota for the race will turn on whether they do 12 or 13 lap stints depending on how much fuel they manage to save. The entire formula is based fuel efficiency. Tyre compounds are so hard that wear isn't a massive concern. If f1 tyres were that hard imagine how hard Luca would be complaining....

Edited by TennisUK, 14 June 2014 - 12:56.


#48 Lazy

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 13:11

Montezemolo is right but instead of mouthing off he should just announce their withdrawal already. F1 is a shadow of its former self. Restrictive aero rules, restrictive engine rules, restrictive testing/no testing, restrictive scaled wind tunnel rules, resource restriction...

You can call it sour grapes on Montezemolo's behalf if you want but he is right in that F1 needs a rethink.

If F1 isn't as good as it could be, Ferrari are a big reason why. They have had most of the political clout for a while now, they only have themselves to blame if they don't like the fruits of their labour.

 

I don't see it as a big problem tbh, the formula is moving in the right direction,  Bernie will be gone with CVC, Ferrari gone as well would mean most of the dinosaurs out of the picture. Could be a bright new future.



#49 ANF

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 13:13

So not a single other person has realized he didnt actually say this?

Does this not matter to people?

How do you know he didn't say the things Dan Neil says he did?



#50 Ferrari2183

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Posted 14 June 2014 - 13:14

The budget cap would mean that teams could not rely on out-spending the opposition, by trying 10 options when other teams can only afford 1, and guaranteeing getting the right result.

Ferrari objected to the budget cap.

It's almost as if di Montezemolo doesn't think Ferrari has the intelligence to beat other teams if they are all on a level playing field.

Although, given that Ferrari has more money than the church, one of the two best drivers in F1, and an ex-champ, and yet are still nowhere near a win, perhaps he has a point.

People rag on Marussia and Caterham for being at the back, but given their budgets they're doing a terrific job. In terms of achievement for resource, Ferrari are the worst team in the sport right now.

Perhaps LdM needs to focus on that rather than making another specious threat to quit because they're not coping.

There was, is and never will be a level playing field in any sport. The budget cap just leads to no-mans-land. F1 is the only sport where accommodating smaller teams lead to changes for everybody. Go and tell Real Madrid and Barcelona that they have to reduce their wage bill and television rights money so that others can compete. It's bordering on ludicrous now as F1 is accommodating this. Running a competitive F1 team was never cheap and will never will be either.

And how can you say Ferrari are the worst team right now? They might not be doing well for the resources they have but you also have to consider the restrictive nature of the very regulations we're questioning. They cannot use their testing facilities, they cannot run the wind tunnel as they choose, they cannot develop their engine and to top it all off the very introduction of the current engine goes against the cost savings plan.