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Ferrari and Red Bull quit FOTA

NEWS STORY
02/12/2011

The future of the teams' alliance, FOTA, appears uncertain after Ferrari and Red Bull walk away.

Many will believe this latest twist to be inevitable, believing that the idea of the teams working in harmony was an accident waiting to happen.

Previously unable to agree on the most mundane of issues - sparkling or still water at meetings - the Formula One Teams' Alliance has seen all eleven teams (HRT are no longer members) not only singing from the same hymn sheet but showing unswerving support for one another. At least in public.

Behind the scenes however, the old mistrust and back-stabbing has been there all along, the long, ongoing row over the Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA) finally bringing matters to a head.

While Red Bull's confirmation of it departure was a mere; "Red Bull Racing can confirm it has served notice to withdraw from FOTA. The team will remain committed to finding a solution regarding cost saving in Formula One", Ferrari was only too eager to explain the reasons for its decision.

"It was a difficult decision and a great deal of thought went into it," said the team in a statement. "It was taken reluctantly after analysing the current situation and the stalemate when it came to debate on some issues that were at the core of why the association was formed, indeed with Ferrari and Luca di Montezemolo as the main instigator and promoter of ideas. It's not by chance that the President of the Maranello company held that same position and job title within FOTA up to the end of 2009.

"Some of the major achievements of the association during these years, also worked out in conjunction with the FIA, centred around cost reduction, which was of significant benefit to everyone, the big teams and the small ones. Ferrari was on the front line in this area, even before the birth of FOTA and it intends to continue down this route to ensure the sustainability of the sport in the long term. Now however, it is necessary to find some new impetus to move it along because FOTA's drive has run its course, despite the excellent work of current President, Martin Whitmarsh in trying to reach agreement between the various positions for the common good.

"Ferrari will continue to work with the other teams to make the current RRA, Resource Restriction Agreement, aimed at controlling costs, more effective and efficient, modifying it to make it more stringent in key areas such as aerodynamics, to rebalance some aspects such as testing and to expand it to areas currently not covered such as engines.

"Formula 1, like the rest of the world in fact, is currently going through a delicate period. Ferrari wants to work with all parties for the future of a sport that expresses the highest level of motor sport technology. We must return to a situation where Formula 1 is really a test bed for advanced technological research, the results of which can be transferred to Granturismo cars. In addition, we must not forget that this sport must become more user friendly and more accessible to the general public and furthermore, it cannot be the only professional sport where it is practically impossible to do any training: the number of days of testing must be increased so that the drivers, especially the young ones who lack experience and the teams, can be adequately prepared, as well as providing more opportunities for them to come into contact with spectators and sponsors."

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