Teams face rules talk exclusion

Formula 1 teams have been warned that they risk being frozen out of discussions about the sport's future rules unless they swiftly commit themselves to F1 long term by agreeing to Bernie Ecclestone's latest cash offer.

Teams face rules talk exclusion

That's the message that was delivered on Friday by FIA president Max Mosley, who claims that the sport's governing body was now only willing to discuss planned rules changes from 2008 with those teams that had committed to race from that date.

Amid a backdrop of Ferrari's decision to sign a deal and commit itself to F1 until the end of 2012, and with the other teams due to meet with representatives of the rival GPWC series next Wednesday, Mosley's decision is only designed to add pressure to those teams contemplating a switch to the rival championship.

Meeting with journalists in London, Mosley reiterated that the offer made to teams by Ecclestone for 50 percent of the sport's commercial income was very generous, and added that those teams aligning their future to F1 immediately would also have the benefit of helping to frame future regulations.

"During this year we will be quietly discussing the technical and sporting regulations for 2008 with those teams signing up for the new Concorde Agreement," Mosley said. "There is not much point talking to those who haven't signed the Concorde Agreement because presumably they are planning to do something else - they're probably planning to do their own championship.

"These teams [those that are committed from 2008] will be doing the rules - the one's that go in for 2008 will get a lot more. Much more money, as well as playing a full role in determining the rules for 2008."

Although Ferrari is the only team that has so far committed to F1 from 2008, Mosley has dropped a major hint that some rival teams may also be close to agreeing terms with Ecclestone - and he has even suggested that some may even have already signed terms for a new Concorde Agreement.

When asked how many teams he believes were now committed to F1 from the start of 2008, Mosley said: "it would be foolish to assume that only one team has signed."

Mosley wants the 2008 regulations set in stone by the end of this year, and with serious discussions with teams due to take place after the three flyaway races at the start of the season, Mosley has cheekily suggested that he could have half the grid on his side by then.

"By the time the teams come back from the first three races I think we will have four or five teams in discussions with us on the regulations, whether that's done privately or publicly."

Mosley's plans for 2008 include a drastic reduction in downforce, with as little as 10% of current levels, allied with an increase in mechanical grip to help improve the racing.

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