Renault, Toyota Cautiously Welcome FIA Initiative

The Renault and Toyota teams have showed their support for the FIA's decision to impose a series of measures yesterday aimed at improving competition and cutting costs from the 2003 season onwards.

Renault, Toyota Cautiously Welcome FIA Initiative

The Renault and Toyota teams have showed their support for the FIA's decision to impose a series of measures yesterday aimed at improving competition and cutting costs from the 2003 season onwards.

Both teams, however, have urged Formula One's ruling body to keep an open mind and be cautious in carrying out any radical changes.

"Yesterday's meeting was productive," said Renault's team principal Flavio Briatore. "The changes the FIA has decided upon are a step in the right direction. It is imperative we ensure that our sport has a long-term future. We need to offer a better show on track whilst reducing costs, which have reached enormous levels in recent seasons.

"Having said that, we must think about, and methodically examine, these measures in terms of their feasibility and the time-scale needed to adapt to them."

The changes included eliminating all radio communication during races between driver and team and preventing engineers from changing settings electronically while a car is in motion. Each team will only be allowed two cars from this year, thus sidelining the spare car.

From 2004, it is planned that all cars will have a standard braking system and rear wing design and car manufacturers involved in Formula One must ensure that no team is left without an engine. The FIA also plan to get rid of traction control and fully automatic gearboxes by 2004.

The Toyota team, who made their Formula One debut last year, also supported the initiatives but said they were expecting the FIA to "be open-minded and accept constructive proposals from the teams aimed to reduce costs, with no compromise for the drivers safety."

"Toyota supports and appreciates any FIA initiatives aimed at reducing costs, increasing the safety and improving the excitement for spectators of the Formula One," the Japanese squad said in a statement.

"In absence of an agreement between the teams, Toyota welcomes the proposal received yesterday from the FIA and will attend the meeting of the Technical Working Group in London on January 17, with the intent to positively contribute to the definition of the detailed rules."

Team bosses have been given until Friday evening to protest against the radical proposals introduced by the FIA.

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