Vettel: Formula 1 ‘family’ must protect smaller teams

Date published: April 26 2020

Sebastian Vettel and Franz Tost 2020 pa

Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel believes Formula 1 needs to put the financial measures in place to keep the smaller teams in operation.

The COVID-19 pandemic has put a lot of strain on the finances for all ten teams with racing on hold, and many of the smaller teams on the grid don’t have the kind of resources as those at the top to safeguard their future.

Formula 1 bosses have been honest in saying that some teams could be lost from the series, and there are ongoing talks about reducing the budget cap from its agreed limit of $175m per season.

The top three teams, Mercedes, and in particular Ferrari and Red Bull are concerned though about further reductions to the cap and Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has suggested a two-tier budget cap for supplier and customer teams, an idea backed by Red Bull principal Christian Horner.

But Vettel feels that the most important thing is that the Formula 1 “family” looks after the smaller teams to make sure that they don’t go bust.

“With the new regulations, the idea is to bring the field closer together so if this special situation in a way would help the sport to come closer together in order to then have better racing and a better sport, then that would be a good side effect I would say,” Vettel told Motorsport, as quoted by Insideracing.com.

“I think we will only be able to judge once we have some really concrete decisions in our hands and then see how they would work in practical life.

“But definitely, for some of the smaller teams, this situation is putting them [and] their existence in question, and it’s quite extreme. So, you know, as a family of Formula 1, I think we ought to look out for each other.”

The new regulations that were coming in 2021 have now been pushed back until 2022 – that may not be good news for Ferrari since their 2020 challenger looked off the pace during pre-season testing, but regardless Vettel thinks it was the right decision.

“I think postponing the rules to 2022, the new set of regulations, and then still discussing some of it for ’21, the what and how and so on, I think is the right approach,” he explained.

“Postponing some of it is definitely right.

“Whether it’s worse or better for Ferrari, the natural interest right now is what’s right for the sport, and I think that’s the right decision for the sport.

“I think that’s also the intention, the most important intention, by Ferrari and the team right now.”

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