Big teams schedule meeting on F1 future

By on Thursday, May 5, 2011

May 5 (GMM) F1's biggest teams have scheduled a meeting in Stuttgart next weekend to discuss the future of the sport, according to reports.

The news was reported by the Daily Telegraph but also Sky News' City editor Mark Kleinman, who has been very well informed so far on the possible Rupert Murdoch-led takeover of formula one.

A Ferrari-linked company has confirmed it is allying with News Corporation in the consortium, and Italy's Autosprint says it is "absolutely conceivable" that the likes of McLaren and Mercedes might also get involved.

The governing Concorde agreement expires at the end of next year and BBC pundit and former team owner Eddie Jordan thinks there is a lot of "posturing" going on at present.

The reports said the Stuttgart meeting will involve Ferrari, McLaren, Mercedes and Red Bull and the latter three teams may "investigate the possibility of joining the consortium themselves", the Telegraph's Tom Cary wrote.

On Wednesday Ferrari reacted to the news that a company linked to its carmaker parent Fiat was involved in the potential F1 takeover.

"We have no comment to make, partly because we are not directly involved at the moment," said a spokesman.

"All we can do is repeat what has already been said so often in the past -- Ferrari stresses the importance of ensuring the long term stability and development of formula one."

And McLaren's Martin Whitmarsh told Sky News: "I think whoever owns the sport in the future, be that the current owners or new owners, it's just important that the teams are more cohesive than they have ever been."

As for the expiring Concorde, Ferrari team boss Stefano Domenicali suggested that the negotiations are soon set to step into a higher gear.

"At the moment it's quiet because something is going to happen soon," the Italian told Auto Bild.

Ferrari has recently been highly critical of the current state of F1, such as the emphasis on aerodynamic development.

"If formula one is interesting in the future for manufacturers we need to ensure that all the elements of motor racing are there in equal measure," said Domenicali.

He also said F1 should not "change the rules all the time" whilst ensuring that there are races "in all the important markets".

Autosprint magazine said the teams are indeed setting out plans for simple and stable rules post 2012, the revival of key European venues, reduced ticket prices and the modernising of media platforms for the younger audience.

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