Briatore: Solution needed 'at all costs'
|By Jonathan Noble and Michele Lostia||Thursday, May 14th 2009, 13:10 GMT|
Renault boss Flavio Briatore believes a solution to the row over a two-tier Formula 1 must be achieved 'at all costs', ahead of showdown talks with the FIA in London tomorrow.
After a week in which Toyota, Red Bull, Ferrari and Renault all announced that they will quit F1 at the end of this year unless plans for a voluntary budget cap are scrapped, Briatore says that no one is keen for the situation to result in a breakaway series.
Speaking about the possibility of a rebel category, Briatore told Gazzetta dello Sport: "It is a remote hypothesis that everyone wants to avoid.
"We are living in a difficult moment and we must find a solution at all costs. I hope [Max] Mosley and his men will mend their ways, in order to start over in full harmony."
Briatore says that the teams are angry at both the rules that have been introduced for 2010, and the manner in which they were forced through without direct consultation with the teams.
"The teams are F1 and the international federation should simply be the referee, the rules should be written by us, they can't be imposed by Max without him speaking to anyone," he explained. "That's an unacceptable way to work.
"The FIA throws at us a new thing every week: we've gone from medals to diffusers with embarrassing thoughtlessness. We can't go on like this. We must protect the work of our employees."
He added: "It must be clear that we, Ferrari, and the others have no intention of breaking with FIA. We want to be there, to participate, and to preserve the future. We are setting logical conditions to Mosley."
Briatore also said that he believed the desire to attract new teams to the sport was misplaced, because manufacturers are ready to keep a full grid.
"We don't accept F1 to be distorted by a set of rules that has no reason to exist," he said. "The arrival of new teams that lack the characteristics to be admitted to a world championship is not acceptable either.
"Maybe he's [Mosley] had the support of some small teams and he got excited. However, what will happen with the championship he had the World Council voting for, is that the teams with the capped budget will be ahead of the ones that didn't accept that limit, thanks to more technical and design freedom.
"That can't be. That way you'd tarnish not just the image but also the value of who invests money in F1. A world championship with two sets of rules doesn't make sense."
Members of the Formula One Teams' Association will meet in London tomorrow morning, prior to their talks with Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone in the afternoon to discuss a way forward.
When asked if he was optimistic a solution could be found, Briatore said: "I must be."