Teams continue work on F1 agreement

Formula 1 teams are due to meet once again on race morning at the Monaco Grand Prix to try and hammer out an agreement to secure the future of the sport

Teams continue work on F1 agreement

Although members of the Formula One Teams' Association (FOTA) have expressed some optimism that a solution can be found to the row over a £40 million budget cap, there remain differences that are not so easy to resolve in the short term.

And there is some time pressure on the situation, because the deadlines for entries to the 2010 world championship is next Friday.

Speaking after the latest meeting that took place in Monaco on Saturday afternoon, Ross Brawn expressed some hope that teams were inching towards a resolution to the situation.

"Well we have another meeting tomorrow, and we seem to make progress at each meeting," he said. "So as long as we continue to make progress at each meeting then we should eventually arrive at a solution, so I don't know how many meetings it will take.

"There are agreements amongst the teams and agreements with the FIA, so I think my view is that there is progress and if we keep working in a constructive way then we will eventually reach a solution."

When asked if it was possible to come up with a solution by next Friday, Brawn said: "I wouldn't like to comment on that. Maybe, maybe not. I think ...who knows."

Although FOTA has not revealed any details of its plans or progress, a senior source has suggested that the current teams may all choose to lodge their entries by next week's deadline - but only with an attachment expressing that their entry does depend on them being happy with the 2010 regulations.

Such a proviso would at least buy the teams some time to thrash out a suitable agreement with the FIA - which could include budget cap spending exceptions and a glide path of cost reduction.

McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh said there was a 'responsibility' amongst those involved in the negotiations to find an answer.

"We need between us to find a good solution for Formula 1, for the fans, for everybody," he said. "It's very easy at these critical times for egos, and the like, to get in the way of finding a solution.

"A lot has been said in the run up to the meetings, which probably doesn't help because it only causes people to be entrenched in their position. I think we all have a responsibility, those of us who are involved in the sport, to find a positive way forward.

"There are 10 teams here who have shown great commitment to be in Formula 1. There are probably three teams who wouldn't be here if it wasn't for the efforts of the FOTA, and I think there has to be a determination to make sure that we retain 10 teams at least.

"So we need to try to be calm, be constructive and work together. There were some constructive parts of the meeting yesterday, but not everything is agreed. The priority at the moment is to make sure we find a positive way forward for the sport."

Brawn said: "We all want to come together for a solution because we don't want to lose anyone in F1. My personal ambition is that all the teams should find a solution together, but I think we will. We will eventually reach a solution that everyone will accept, including the FIA."

Despite the optimism, BMW motorsport director Mario Theissen admitted that the situation was still far from resolved.

"It was positive to have the meeting and to discuss the individual issues but I have to say that we have not arrived at a solution," he said.

When asked how much closer he felt the teams were to an agreement compared to last week's meetings at Heathrow, Theissen said: "Difficult to tell. It's been a constructive meeting and discussions. But then it needs to be pinned down on a piece of paper what really was achieved and only then you can judge on it."

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