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Thursday, January 8, 2009

Mosley wants more cost cuts

Max Mosley continues to hammer home his cost cutting message, asking FOTA for additional ways to cut costs in a letter to chair Luca di Montezemolo ahead of the organization's Thursday meeting.

"Even before the current crisis, F1 was not viable," the BBC quotes Mosley. "It is impossible to cut costs without change. Cherished projects, facilities and sadly even people have to go."

Mosley wants a championship which isn't dependent on manufacturers or billionaires to survive.

"Costs must be reduced to a point where a well-run independent team can operate profitably with just Formula One Management money and very moderate sponsorship."

Italian Formula One Grand Prix: Race

FOTA and the FIA recently agreed to several measures to slash spending, including making available inexpensive engines for independents.

At this stage, FOTA appears receptive to Mosley's call, including the possibility of a spending cap, if it can be fairly applied.

"The idea that each team should have the same amount of money, so that success is simply a function of intellectual ability, has great appeal," di Montezemolo said. "If properly enforced, it would be a very fair system. Indeed one view is that having much more money than a rival team is just as unfair as having a bigger engine. We should like to discuss this further with FOTA."

Honda talks continue

Hungarian F1 Grand Prix - Qualifying

Meanwhile, autosport.com reports there are 12 serious parties interested in purchasing the Honda team, far more than three or four thought to be involved earlier.

CEO Nick Fry confirmed the number to the Web site at the Cleaner Racing Conference at Autosport International.

"It's looking very positive at the moment. We had, as you might expect, a huge amount of interest at the start - probably well in excess of 30 groups came to us," he told the site. "We have narrowed that down to something in the region of a dozen, and we're currently talking to Honda about what is the best bet for the future."

Fry sounds optimistic, and believes chances are very good the team will be on the grid in Melbourne.

Read the full story here.

Donington deadlines

Not surprisingly, it has been revealed Donington Park has a limited time to prove it can push through the necessary upgrades to keep the British Grand Prix.

Bernie Ecclestone told the Daily Telegraph newspaper the circuit has until September to meet certain criteria in the contract to keep the race.

"They [DVLL] have a contract with us that I am sure they understand, and I would imagine they have considered the state of the market and have a fall-back position." Ecclestone said. "I am relying on what they told me they will deliver, and we have a September deadline, from memory, to see that all is as it should be. If it is not then we have four or five venues ready to stage a race."

DVLL won the rights to the race away from Silverstone, publicly trashed for years by Ecclestone, from 2010, but a steep hill must be climbed to make it a reality: circuit upgrades, ticket sales and transportation chief among them.

While Donington officials express optimism, circuits with far more infrastructure in place have faced the ax in recent years, and it is a very likely possibility the country which is home to so much of the sport could find itself without a race in two years time.

Here's hoping it doesn't come to that… Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six


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