Reduce costs by 50% warns Haug


Following Honda's decision to withdraw from F1, Mercedes Motorsport Director Norbert Haug has warned that the sport is in serious danger unless costs are reduced by as much as fifty-percent.

In a statement issued in the wake of Honda's shock withdrawal, Haug said:

"Within the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) we're working very hard on measures to cut costs, and over the next two years we must achieve cuts of at least 50 percent.

"Our Formula One involvement is built on financially solid foundations and is in large part financed by our sponsoring partners.

"This pullout is very sad," he continued. "It only shows how important the cost-cutting measures are that we've been advocating for more than five years, and which have only been realised to a small degree.

"Mercedes-Benz's contribution is cost-efficient, the resonance in the media and in the public which last season and Lewis Hamilton's win generated was worth many times our financial investment."

Fellow German manufacturer BMW issued its own statement in reaction to Thursday's announcement.

"F1 involvement is an integral part of the company strategy," wrote BMW board member Klaus Draeger. "There is no better platform than Formula One for demonstrating our brand values. BMW, moreover, makes targeted use of the Formula One project as a technology accelerator for series production.

"With the BMW Sauber F1 Team, we have from the start focused on high efficiency and have achieved our successes with a compact and powerful team. The cost-benefit ratio is commensurately positive."

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Published: 06/12/2008
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