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Carey: We’re not looking to dumb the cars down

Formula 1 chief Chase Carey admits that his technical team is looking at solutions to cut expenses for teams and on the table for consideration is the standardisation of some parts, but he insists – as does F1 technical boss Ross Brawn – that this is not the first step to dumbing down F1 or turning it into a one-make series.

With regards to cost cutting, Carey said, “There are many paths to get there, whether it’s cost caps, or other ways to address key components of the car.”

“We’re not looking to standardise the car – we think it is very important to continue to have a sport that is competition married to state of the art technologies. We’re not looking to dumb the cars down, but I think we can standardise components of it.”

“We are certainly looking for ways to address what some of the teams in particular spend that would improve the overall economics of the business and enable everybody in it to benefit, as well as improving the competition,” added the F1 chief.

The gulf in spending between the big teams and the smaller teams is huge with the likes of Ferrari and Mercedes throwing in excess of $350-million each at their programmes, while Force India and Sauber make do with budgets below $100-million.

Carey explained, “There are many paths to get there, whether it’s cost caps, or other ways to address key components of the car. We’re not looking to standardise the car – we think it is very important to continue to have a sport that is competition married to state of the art technologies.”

“We’re not looking to dumb the cars down, but I think we can standardise components of it. We are certainly looking for ways to address what some of the teams in particular spend that would improve the overall economics of the business and enable everybody in it to benefit, as well as improving the competition.”

“One of the challenges we have today is there are a handful of teams that clearly spend at a level that’s much different from the others, and you can see the results on the track.”

“So if we can bring the costs into an area where they are more comparable – not equal – to each other, it can enhance competition and would make the economics of the business much better. We’ve begun that process with the teams, so we’ve had some preliminary meetings.”

“There are some big components to it, like addressing the engine, which is probably the most complicated part of the car as a whole. It is certainly our goal to address those costs, and we think the sport will on many levels benefit from that,” added Carey.

Brawn is on the same page as his boss, “We don’t want to dumb Formula 1 down. Formula 1 still has to be aspirational for the teams. We don’t want all the teams to be exactly the same, there should still be the aspirational teams.”

“There should still be the Ferraris, there should still be Mercedes, the Red Bulls that teams want to aspire to beat,” explained Brawn.

Big Question: How can Formula 1 cut costs effectively?