Red Bull principal Christian Horner does not believe it is the role of a team to get involved with the ongoing tension between the FIA and Formula 1, though stressed “harmony” is important for the series.
The FIA and Formula One Management play vital roles in ensuring that Formula 1 runs smoothly, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem having referred to the governing body as the “landlord”, while Liberty Media are the commercial rights holder for F1, calling the shots while adhering to the FIA-set regulations in place.
However, rather than the FIA and F1 working perfectly in sync, there has been numerous flashpoints in recent times between the two entities.
FIA and Formula 1 disagreements “their business”
Additional reporting by Thomas Maher
One example of such tension was Ben Sulayem rattling a few cages in F1 with his comments on the series’ rumoured value, amidst Saudi takeover speculation, while the FIA and F1 do not appear to see eye to eye on Andretti’s bid to join the F1 grid.
The FIA has approved the prospective Andretti-Cadillac team to join, though F1 seems rather cold on the idea, which has led to Ben Sulayem criticising the series and expressing confusion over the opposition.
And now a fresh drama is afoot, with the FIA announcing that their Compliance Department is investigating the potential leak of confidential information from a member of FOM personnel to an F1 team boss.
A BusinessF1 magazine report on this focused on Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff and his wife Susie, who serves as F1 Academy managing director, with a disgruntled Mercedes team having since issued a stern response in reply to the FIA announcing this investigation, one they and FOM claimed they were not forewarned of.
When speaking to media including PlanetF1.com at the F1 2023 season-ending Abu Dhabi GP, it was put to Horner that surely it is time for the FIA and F1 to get on the same page for the good of the sport?
Horner felt this is outside the scope of influence for the teams, but agreed that nothing positive can come from the tension.
“I think that’s their business,” he said.
“I think we’re just the teams, we race against a set of regulations and we get paid on where we finish. And that’s the roles that the two functions perform.
“But obviously, it’s important for the sport for there to be harmony between the two organising bodies.”
Formula 1 is now into the winter break before the F1 2024 season gets underway in Bahrain on the first weekend of March.