FIA president Max Mosley has written to the eight remaining Formula One Teams' Association members urging them to enter next year's championship unconditionally so they can help shape the rules they want, AUTOSPORT can reveal.
After a weekend of high tension at the Turkish Grand Prix ahead of the publication on Friday of the 2010 entry list, Mosley's much-awaited response to the eight FOTA teams appeared conciliatory.
Mosley claimed that the best way the teams could help mould the future of the sport the way they wanted would be to drop the conditions attached to the entries they had made to the 2010 championship.
In fact, he reckoned it would be 'simple' to find a solution to FOTA's concerns about new rules if all the teams lodged unconditional entries and signed up for a budget cap - before helping create new regulations.
In the letter sent to Ferrari, McLaren, BMW Sauber, Renault, Red Bull Racing, Toro Rosso, Toyota and Brawn, Mosley said that he wanted to sit down with all the 2010 teams later this month to begin discussions about framing such rules.
To do that, he therefore wanted the FOTA members to confirm by tomorrow that they wanted to compete in 2010 so he could press ahead with his plans.
"Under the International Sporting Code (Art. 66) we cannot now change the published 2010 rules unless we have the consent of all the competitors who have entered," wrote Mosley in the letter, a copy of which has been seen by AUTOSPORT. "However once we have a list of confirmed entries, we can make changes provided we have the necessary unanimous agreement.
"You therefore have the option of participating in this process as a confirmed entrant, or not. In order to participate, you should now write to us confirming that your entry is unconditional.
"It is of course up to you, but the simplest way to ensure that all entrants run under the same rules would be if everyone entered under the cost-cap rules as published and then all entrants cooperated to agree modifications to those rules which would make the proposition workable for all parties."
The FIA is due to announce its 2010 F1 entry list on Friday, with Williams and Force India having already lodged unconditional entries - and at least 10 other new teams vying for a spot.
Mosley made it clear to FOTA's members that any rule changes had to be made in cooperation with any new outfits who made it onto the grid.
"We plan to arrange a meeting of all the confirmed 2010 teams immediately after 12 June in order to discuss the cost saving measures that have been proposed by the 2009 FOTA teams," he explained.
"We have already canvassed the views of some of the likely new entrants regarding the proposed measures and the feedback is broadly positive so a solution should be relatively simple to achieve.
"To this end, if you do intend to enter, it would be helpful if you would let us have drafts of the precise rules you wish adopted, as much of the Enclosure 3 submitted by FOTA on behalf of the 2009 teams is currently in the form of minutes and statements of intent rather than the clear rules which you [and we] seek.
"We look forward to a positive response. It would be helpful to have this no later than close of business on Tuesday 9 June."
As part of the conditions of the team's entries to next year's championship, FOTA had demanded that a new Concorde Agreement be signed by June 11 - just 24 hours before the entry list is lodged.
Mosley has made it clear that such a scenario is impossible - especially because it will be necessary for all the 2010 teams to sign such an agreement.
"As explained at both our recent meetings, the FIA is willing to enter into a Concorde Agreement dealing with all questions of governance and rule stability along the traditional lines first established in 1981," Mosley continued in his letter.
"The Agreement was renewed in 1998 to the satisfaction of all currently competing teams and renewed again in 2005 by us to the satisfaction of Ferrari and, we understand, by FOM to the satisfaction of a number of teams including Williams.
"We are ready to begin discussions immediately with a view to signing an agreement without delay. However, there is no possibility of this being concluded in advance of settling the 2010 entry list, a draft of several hundred pages having been produced at the last moment.
"Also, the FIA will need to know who to discuss the draft with. There will certainly be new teams in 2010 and it presently seems unlikely that all of the 2009 teams will participate in 2010. Obviously the draft should be discussed between those that will participate only."
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