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Red Bull won't regret leaving FOTA - Horner

ESPNF1 Staff
March 9, 2012 « Sauber must be more consistent - Kobayashi | Two DRS zones for the Australian Grand Prix »
Red Bull left FOTA last December © Getty Images

Christian Horner does not see Red Bull regretting its decision to leave the Formula One Teams' Association [FOTA], despite Ross Brawn warning that the split was "short-sighted".

Red Bull and Ferrari left FOTA last December and were quickly followed by Toro Rosso and Sauber, leaving FOTA with just seven members. Last month Mercedes team principal Brawn said: "We think it's a great shame that we've lost members from FOTA because I think we may live to regret that."

Asked by ESPNF1 if he understood where the Mercedes team principal was coming from, Horner replied: "Not really."

He added: "I think the problem with FOTA is that its purpose had become clouded and it was dealing with issues that were beyond its remit. Therefore, we chose to step out of FOTA for the time being and wished them well for the future. But we are very comfortable with our decision and we'd rather be master of our own destiny than a part of FOTA at this time."

FOTA was established in 2008 to give the teams a united voice in negotiations with the FIA and Formula One Management [FOM] during debates over cost capping. In 2009 FOTA threatened to create a breakaway series if its demands were not met, but eventually came to an agreement with the FIA and FOM resulting in the 2009 Concorde Agreement. However, Horner believes FOTA was having too big an influence on the the cars competitiveness last year and was no longer united.

"Obviously the competitive nature of the teams does make it very difficult to reach a consensus," he said. "So it's almost inevitable when FOTA has tried to get involved in areas that directly affect competitiveness that it becomes contentious."

The current Concorde Agreement expires in 2013 and negotiations between the teams and FOM are set to step up a gear this year. But when asked if the teams would be better off united when dealing with Bernie Ecclestone, Horner said: "There are two views of thought on that. I think again it's very difficult to take a fully collective position because within the group some people have different outlooks."