A political storm is looming ahead of Monday’s meeting of the new Formula 1 rule-making Strategy Group, in London.
The new body has effectively replaced the old sporting and technical working groups, but it includes only the most powerful and historic Formula 1 teams – Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren, Mercedes, Williams and Lotus.
According to Auto Motor und Sport, on the agenda for Monday’s meeting is what constitutes a ‘customer car’.
If the definition is softened, some of Formula 1’s smaller constructors could be endangered as the big teams look to sell their cars to potentially more competitive rival teams.
Force India’s Bob Fernley, whose Silverstone based team has 62 points in 2013 compared to Williams’ 1, told the Telegraph that the new body is “unethical and undemocratic”.
AM&S said that the FIA is, however, comfortable with the Strategy Group, because rule-changes would still need to be approved by the Formula 1 Commission.
However, one paddock voice said that F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone has indeed manoeuvred an unfair advantage, because the big teams are generally on his side.
Other reports suggest that the Strategy Group might not even pass the scrutiny of the EU’s competition laws.
“Perhaps,” former FIA president Max Mosley is quoted. “To my knowledge, Mercedes has sought legal advice and the answer was that [the group] is [legally] contestable.” (GMM)
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