Dennis: F1 will benefit from power struggle

McLaren boss Ron Dennis says Formula 1 will be a better sport for the confrontation between the sport's manufacturers who are planning a rival series and German media giant Kirch, which owns a majority share of F1's commercial rights

Dennis: F1 will benefit from power struggle

But he delivered the hardest hitting comments yet over the impending discussions of the how the sport is run, who runs it, how much say they have and how the sport's massive revenues will be shared out.

Dennis joined FIA President Max Mosley's comments yesterday, saying the threat of a rival series was no bluff as has been suggested in some quarters. Among the F1 manufacturers' greatest concerns is that Kirch will take the sport off terrestrial television and into a smaller audience on pay-per-view TV.

"We are all putting together our arsenal of argumentation, and of course there is no point in pulling your gun out if it doesn't have bullets," said Dennis. "I know there is not one Grand Prix team that is feeling dissatisfied with the revenue generated by Formula 1 and therefore they feel there is a necessity for change. The question is, though, is there going to a negotiated change before 2007 that will negate an alternative series coming into force, or is there going to be no negotiated change?"

"At the end of the day, if you create an alternative series it can't just be words - you have to create it. And as we get closer to 2007 I am sure there will be greater efforts put in place - to come with a new solution rather than a new championship.

Whatever the outcome of the battle for supremacy, Dennis is adamant that the end product will ultimately be beneficial to the sport - although it could take a while to get the two factions around the same table.

"Both parties have to be willing to find a solution and at this moment I can't see this happening for a considerable amount of time," he said. "For a new racing series to properly replace the existing one or even be better that needs time effort, money and focus. The team and the manufacturers have no intention of delivering to the media the public, the television, something that is not better. So that is going to take time.

"And it can either be better coming out of a negotiated position or better because we haven't the right way forward and had to adopt a new series. But what is not going to suffer is Formula 1, that is the important thing. We are not going to fight over a city and then be stood in the rubble of that city. I believe all the parties have a positive approach and want F1 to be better.

"It is a little bit like why we have never had a nuclear war, and the probable reason for not having it is that both sides maintained a reasonable balance, not because one side was more dominant that the other. So we have got to have a more balanced position before anyone is prepared to sit down at the negotiating table."

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