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In the wake of the demise of HRT, Bernie Ecclestone says he would be glad to see another team disappear, admitting that he only ever wanted ten teams not twelve.
There are times when one suspects that Luca di Montezemolo might have a point and that age really is catching up with the F1 supremo.
Appearing to have mislaid a Grand Prix in Europe, the 82-year-old now claims that he only ever wanted ten teams on the F1 grid rather than the twelve that have been present since 2010.
In the wake of the loss of Honda, BMW and Toyota - not to mention Bridgestone - F1 has suffered in recent years. And while the manufacturers appeared to be losing faith, the FIA opened up the sport to new (private) teams.
Though the selection process had its problems, meaning the likes of Prodrive were shunned in favour of the stillborn USF1, not to mention the Cosworth issue, at a time when things were looking very worrying for the sport fresh blood and money was brought on board.
As the first of the 'newbies' falls by the wayside, and the other two show no immediate signs of scoring their maiden point, far less moving any further up the grid, Ecclestone has yet again shown his true colours.
"I'd rather have 10," he told Reuters Alan Baldwin. "I never wanted 12. It's just that 10 is easier to handle, for the promoters, for transport. We'd rather have 10.... so long as we don't lose Ferrari."
Asked if he thought HRT might still be rescued, he replied: "I wouldn't think that anyone would want to."
If he only ever wanted ten teams, if ten teams are easier to handle for the promoters and for transport, then why on earth did the FIA seek three new teams thereby bringing the grid up to twelve.
Ecclestone usually gets his way so why didn't he insist this time around?
Whatever, his admission will come as a kick in the teeth to the people at HRT, not to mention Marussia and Caterham.
If Bernie had his way, there would be just three or four teams, each fielding four or five drivers, all the races would take place on soulless street circuits in far flung capitals at a time convenient to TV viewers in European. There would be trackside sprinklers to ensure thrills and spills and a championship that went down to the wire every single year. He calls it entertainment, the rest of us see it as bastardization of the sport.
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