Fernando Alonso: Small teams vital for Formula 1

Fernando Alonso says the survival of smaller teams is "very important" for the vitality of Formula 1

Fernando Alonso: Small teams vital for Formula 1

The Caterham and Marussia teams have fallen off the grid this season, although Caterham has announced that its crowdfunding scheme will bring it back into the field for the final race of 2014 in Abu Dhabi.

A battle to secure more of F1's commercial income by some of the remaining smaller teams raged on during last weekend's Brazilian Grand Prix, though the sport's commercial boss Bernie Ecclestone has told Force India, Lotus and Sauber to rein back their operations if they cannot afford to compete.

Ferrari driver Alonso, who began his own F1 career with minnow Minardi in 2001, said smaller teams such as that were "very important" and vital to the health of the sport.

"I started with a small team, Minardi, all the drivers [should have] the same possibility to start with small teams," he said.

"We need everyone in the sport - more teams and more things happening around F1 will help.

"Hopefully we will find a solution. I don't exactly know what are the problems and what are the possible solutions, but I know that everyone has tried to meet to find a solution and I'm sure they will do the best for the sport, and we will support [them]."

There have been suggestions some of the bigger teams will be forced to run third cars next year, if the grid does not grow back beyond the 18-car fields seen at Austin and Interlagos.

Alonso said he was unsure whether this would be a good development for F1.

Asked how he felt about teams running third cars, Alonso replied: "I don't know, it's something that we've never had.

"If that happens it's because they think that is the best solution.

"But I don't really have a strong opinion on the third car [issue] because it will be quite new and I don't know if it's the best [solution] or not."

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