Todt pushing green initiative


Newly-elected FIA president Jean Todt has revealed that one of his first major projects, as far as F1 is concerned, is to make the sport more environmentally responsible and also to continue to drive down costs.

As part of his green initiative, the Frenchman has appointed former Ferrari engine boss Gilles Simon to spearhead the project.

"I am convinced that we absolutely must reflect the environment with new technologies," he told Le Figaro. "We must adapt to our time and review fundamentally motorsport, even create new disciplines."

He admitted that he was disappointed that KERS had been a failure, with only two teams - McLaren and Ferrari - using it on a regular basis. The controversial system, introduced by Todt's predecessor, Max Mosley, and said to have cost the teams up to a billion in total to develop, was ultimately dropped, on grounds of both cost and the fact that some teams were unable to make it work to their advantage.

"After giving up on KERS, we will accomplish nothing innovative next year," said Todt. "I'm sorry about that and have therefore decided to create a working group, and Gilles Simon will join the FIA in this context."

Other than the environment, and F1's green credentials, Todt admitted that, like Mosley, he is concerned at the sheer cost involved in F1, a situation which has led to two more teams following Honda out of the sport in less than a year.

"F1 is too expensive, and my predecessor made great efforts to reduce costs, but it was not enough, especially as some teams were resistant.

"I am sad that Honda, BMW and Toyota are gone," he continued, "but when you spend a lot and the results are not there, it's inevitable. On the other hand, it's great that new teams will be coming in. However, the cost-saving measures already taken are not sufficient. I am against limiting regulatory budgets but if we want to perpetuate F1 it takes a real awareness and fundamental decisions."

Article from Pitpass (

Published: 28/12/2009
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