Ferrari chairman sets deadline for F1

Luca di Montezemolo, the Ferrari chairman, has given Formula 1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone, the three investment banks that own 75 percent of F1's commercial rights and its car manufacturers until the end of the year to agree their differences on the future ownership and financial structure of Formula 1

Ferrari chairman sets deadline for F1

According to a report in today's Financial Times, di Montezemolo says that F1's carmakers will commit to the rival GPWC in 2008 unless agreement is reached before January 1, 2004.

"We [the manufacturers] would like a solution with Mr Ecclestone and the banks. If not, it will be bad, but it won't be a tragedy. While Bernie Ecclestone was the owner, everyone accepted most of the arrangements...But these things have changed. The carmakers have a bigger presence, and the cost of racing becomes bigger and bigger.

"In no other sport are the teams deprived of the three main revenue streams - trackside advertising and ticket sales - while having to share just 47 percent of the gross income from TV rights. The simple truth is that without the carmakers they cannot make a championship."

Di Montezemolo also attacked the three banks - Bayerische Landesbank, Lehman Brothers and JP Morgan - as they "know nothing about F1". He added: "How can we accept that?"

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