F1 feared losing teams over no budget cap

Date published: June 17 2020

Ross Brawn

Formula 1’s sporting director, Ross Brawn, has said there was a fear that teams and manufacturers could have left the sport if there was no budget cap being introduced.

From the 2021 season, Formula 1 will be enforcing an initial budget cap of $145m before it drops to $140m in 2022 and then to $135m for 2023, 2024 and 2025.

But reaching that agreement was not a straightforward process as the budget cap proved to be a major battleground with teams tried to find the delicate balance of protecting their own interests whilst also safeguarding the future of the sport.

But, now the terms have been agreed, Brawn is now confident that nobody, whether that is current team or engine manufacturer, will be leaving the sport any time soon.

“This crisis gave us the opportunity that we knew the budget cap always would,” Brawn said at the FIA eSport Conference.

“Once you set a budget cap, you can always adjust it.

“Before this ever happened, we said that if we ever have a crisis in the future, we can adjust the budget cap to take account, and all accept that the ideal level changes.

“I think without the ability for these teams to go back to their boards and manufacturers and say: ‘Look, Formula 1 is vital, and it’s going to cost less in the future’, I don’t think we would have retained the number of manufacturers or big teams that we have.

“When a manufacturer is making the economic adjustments it has to, if Formula 1 is still out there with unlimited spending, that’s a difficult argument.

“I think touch wood, we’ve kept all the main players involved, and that’s because we’ve been able to say that we’re sustainable from an economic perspective.”

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