The manufacturers in Formula One, with the exception of Ferrari, met with nine teams on February 16th to present their plans for a rival series once the current Concorde Agreement expires. Ferrari has already signed a new agreement with Bernie ...
The manufacturers in Formula One, with the exception of Ferrari, met with nine teams on February 16th to present their plans for a rival series once the current Concorde Agreement expires. Ferrari has already signed a new agreement with Bernie Ecclestone and the FIA but the other teams are holding back while they consider the alternative idea.
Many thought that the Grand Prix World Championship (GPWC) would grind to a halt once Ferrari dropped out but remaining members BMW, Mercedes and Renault now have the support of Toyota and Honda. In a statement issued jointly by the five manufacturers they said:
1. The Teams and Manufacturers met today at Cliveden near London and unanimously agreed upon the establishment of a new framework for their participation in Grand Prix motor racing post 2007.
2. With respect to technical rules and regulations, all parties confirm and fully endorse the "Governing Principles for Grand Prix Motor Racing" previously developed by the major Manufacturers.
3. With respect to the commercial aspects of the sport, all parties further confirm their support that the principles of premier Grand Prix motor racing post 2007 should be as described by International Sport and Entertainment AG ("iSe") today, which complies with the Governing Principles. iSe will continue its work in this respect.
4. The Manufacturers agreed that when the series is established which respects the "Governing Principles for Grand Prix Motor Racing", then they will guarantee from 2006 the supply of competitive engines at an affordable price to a second team which commits to such series.
5. All parties agree to continue to co-operate together and to establish technical, sporting and governance working groups with appropriate specialists, operating within a defined timetable and brief to document in full a new structure and regulations for the sport so as to put the Teams in a position to participate in a timely and orderly manner in 2008.
6. All parties further agree that all Teams are invited to join on equal terms.
7. The Sauber, Red Bull and Jordan teams warmly welcome the above and agree to respond formally with their positions on the document, following further internal consultation.
Prior to the meeting Eddie Jordan, who's team was recently taken over by the Midland Group, said that he thought signing a new Concorde Agreement was the only way forward. It remains to be seen if his opinion remains the same. Many still believe that the breakaway will never happen.
Recent speculation has it that the new series, should it go ahead, could perhaps still use the term "Formula One". Ecclestone claims that the term cannot be used but reportedly another series could legally use it, as Ecclestone's rights are specifically for the FIA world championship.