Ecclestone wants a budget cap in F1
- Bernie Ecclestone
Bernie Ecclestone would support a mandatory budget cap in Formula One, in order to bring the spending of the biggest teams in line with the backmarkers.
Current budgets in F1 have been estimated to range from €35 million to €200 million with the Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA) the only check on spending. But Ecclestone reckons all the teams should learn to be more prudent and attempt to slash their budgets.
"The teams have to learn to be competitive without tonnes of money," he told the official Formula One website. "They have to refocus again on the basics - on racing, spending on the sport - and not on baronial motorhomes and all kinds of entertainment."
He added: "We have had this kind of problem for quite a while now as of course they spend what they have. You could install a mandatory budget for all teams - on the basis of the smaller teams - but they [the big teams] don't like it and fiercely fight against it."
Asked if he would be in favour of such measures, he said: "I would welcome it. Yes, I think it could happen."
The last time Formula One tried to introduce a budget cap was in 2009 during negotiations over the current Concorde Agreement - the contract which binds the teams, the FIA and Formula One Management together. The teams threatened to create a breakaway series unless the proposed £40 million cap was dropped and eventually agreed to the first RRA in order to curb spending.
Asked about the state of negotiations over the next Concorde Agreement, the current one will expire at the end of 2012, Ecclestone said: "We are in the middle of discussions."
He said the main point of contention was money: "They [the teams] want to get more money - to be able to spend more!"