FIA seeking grid expansion

Thursday 12-December-2013 08:01

The International Automobile Federation (FIA) announced on Wednesday that it has started the process of selecting a new Formula One team, to be added to the roster in 2015 or 2016.

"A new selection process to identify a candidate team to participate at a competitive level," the FIA revealed on its website.

"The overall long-term interests of the championship will determine which candidates are selected."

The last time a new constructor was added to the grid was in 2010 when Malaysian-owned Lotus Racing, Spanish-based Hispania and Virgin Racing joined after Honda, Toyota and BMW left the sport.

Since then, Lotus Racing started competing as Caterham and Virgin became Marussia, while Hispania as HRT left the sport in 2012.

The move by the sport's governing body comes at a time where several current teams are rumoured to be in financial trouble, which in turn increased the need for so-called "pay-drivers" who bring sponsors with them to the sport.

Kimi Raikkonen, for instance, revealed that non-payment from Lotus was one of the reasons he decided to leave the Enstone outfit in favour of a return to Ferrari.

In its Wednesday statement, the FIA added that terms of the selection process would be revealed to interested parties that formally expressed their desire to join the paddock by January 3, 2014.

An initial administration fee of 5,000 dollars as well as the details of its shareholders would also be required by the F1 governing body.

"The FIA anticipates that full applications will need to be submitted by Feb 10, 2014, leading to a decision on Feb 28, 2014," the statement continued.

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