Brown hints Ferrari, Red Bull ‘are playing with fire’

Date published: April 10 2020

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McLaren F1 boss, Zak Brown, has accused a couple of teams, thought to be Ferrari and Red Bull, of “playing with fire” over the budget cap.

In order to try and protect the sport during the ongoing world crisis, a number of measures have been agreed to help teams save as much money as possible as revenue streams continue to run dry.

The 2021 regulation changes have been put on hold, while their is an agreement in place to see the budget cap been reduced to $150m.

But the vast majority of teams are willing to reduce that further to $125m. There are two teams who are reluctant to do so.

“Without 10 teams or at least nine teams, you don’t really have F1,” Brown said in Sky F1’s Vodcast.

“A couple of teams need to be very careful, because I think they are playing with fire, so to speak.

“It takes a full grid to have a sport, so if they continue to have the sport unsustainable, and a couple of [smaller] teams lose interest, or financially are not able to participate any more, they are going to be racing against themselves.

“And that’s not going to work.

Brown would not be draw on the names of the “couple of teams” specifically, but his praise for Mercedes’ parent company, Daimler, means you do not have to be much of a detective to work out which teams in particular he is referring to in his comments.

“We’re talking about a couple of teams,” he added.

“Daimler I think is doing an excellent job, recognising the situation that we’re in.

“So you can deduct who the other teams are.

“It’s a huge marketing platform for those two teams, so I understand why they want to keep the fiscal balance where it is now.

“But in sport you kind of want to think that everyone can fight fairly and may the best team win.

“I think they need to have confidence. It’s like a heavyweight who only wants to fight middleweights.

“These are great teams, they should be prepared to fight everyone on more equal terms, and I think that’s what fans want in sport.”

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