Domenicali: Entries not a climbdown
|By Matt Beer||Saturday, May 30th 2009, 15:52 GMT|
Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali says the FOTA squads' decision to only submit 'conditional' entries for the 2010 world championship means they have stayed true to their principles - including their opposition to the budget cap.
But he added that he hopes their proposals satisfy the FIA's desire for dramatic cost cuts and is keen for a compromise to be reached.
Several teams, including Ferrari, had threatened to withhold their 2010 entries in a disagreement over the FIA's plans for a voluntary budget cap next season, before placing entries in time for yesterday's deadline subject to a new Concorde Agreement being signed and a modified version of the 2009 rules applying next year.
"It's very simple," said Domenicali. "The nine teams - Williams membership having been suspended - that currently make up FOTA, have put in entries for the 2010 championship that will only be valid if the Concorde Agreement is signed and if the regulations will be those currently in use, but modified as per FOTA's suggestions.
"The action taken yesterday is completely in keeping with Ferrari's principles, as stated at the Main Board meeting on 12 May and with those of FOTA."
He emphasised that the decision did not mean that the Formula One Teams' Association accepted the FIA's budget cap vision.
"Absolutely not," said Domenicali. "The request to make the 2009 regulations the starting point, means there will be no budget cap."
But Domenicali believes that FOTA's latest cost-cutting plans will be sufficient to achieve the FIA's goals without budget caps being necessary.
"The FIA wants to significantly reduce costs with two objectives: to stop any more existing teams from quitting the sport and to allow for the eventual entry of new teams," he said.
"Both these targets can be met: costs will be considerably reduced and, at the same time, there will be considerable efforts made by the current competitors in Formula 1 to stay in the sport."
He added that if the latest compromise proposal was accepted, it should not be seen as a victory for FOTA.
"If this happens and I really hope it does, I would prefer to say that Formula 1 is the winner: it will have kept its main characteristics of technological and sporting competition, it will have been assured of stability in the regulations and the long term commitment of the participants," Domenicali said.
"This is what FOTA has always wanted: to work alongside the FIA and the Commercial Rights Holder for a healthy and prosperous Formula 1."