• Force India

No cost cap 'unacceptable' - Force India

ESPN Staff
April 9, 2014 « Sirotkin struggles with wrong-sized shoes | McLaren and Red Bull in dispute over Fallows »
Bob Fernley insists Force India will continue to apply pressure over the budget cap © Sutton Images

Force India's deputy team principal Bob Fernley has branded the FIA's decision to bow to the pressure of the top teams over the cost cap 'unacceptable'.

On Sunday Jean Todt announced the FIA has dropped plans for a cap in 2015, which stemmed from opposition from the six teams in F1's new strategy group, Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes, McLaren, Williams and Lotus. The FIA will instead achieve cost-cutting through sporting regulations but Fernley admitted the team will continue pushing for budget restrictions to be implemented.

"Yes, I am," said Fernley when asked whether he was disappointed by the FIA's decision. "I think that shows the frailty of the system as it is today. It's totally unacceptable and we'll never change our opinion on that. You can't enrich and empower five very strong teams, disenfranchise six and expect the six to be happy. I think we have to continuously put pressure on for it to happen. I think Force India has proved you don't have to keep spending money to put on a good show. Bahrain was testament to F1 putting on a wonderful show. I think you need regulation to help, but you also need cost control, and I don't think we'll change our opinion on that. We have to get the teams viable for the sustainability of the sport."

Fernley also said the Bahrain Grand Prix, where Force India took its first podium since 2009, was a timely reminder that F1 needs to do more to tell fans about the technological revolution it is spearheading this year.

"The problem is the critics were too quick to attack, two races in. We've not really fully developed the potential yet. When Red Bull get their programme together, and Ferrari get their programme together, obviously we probably have a slight advantage at the moment with Mercedes, but it will all start to equal out and we'll start to see a real fight.

"I just think that fans embracing what we are trying to do with the technology is so much more fascinating than what we are [letting people know]. There's a lot we have to teach people on how we are running these cars and that's perhaps what we have to teach people and that's the bit we have to get over on the TV. The complexity and sophistication of it really is mind-blowing."

He also added: "I didn't hear any fans complaining about the noise!"