Formula 1 motorsport chief Ross Brawn is adamant that Formula 1 will survive no matter what teams contest the series – including Ferrari – but at the same time insists that he will do everything he can to keep the Italian team in the sport.
This comes in the wake of Ferrari president Sergio Marchionne threats to pull the fabled Scuderia from Formula 1 if the ethos of the sport changes in the future. In a nutshell, the Reds are against standardisation of components and restrictions that may turn F1 into a glorified single-make series.
Marchionne has likened Brawn to Moses, but the Briton is keen to prevent an exodus, “I think what Ferrari wanted to put on record is that there are important elements of Formula 1 they want to keep and we definitely agree with this.”
“Ferrari is firmly entrenched in Formula 1 and we do not want to lose them. For us the framework and conditions must be right too and there are certain things that we want to change. I hope, that even after such changes Ferrari feel comfortable and welcome in the sport.”
“Formula 1 will always survive no matter which teams participate. We’ve seen it many times – World Champions go, teams disappear, we have lost drivers but the sport recovers and continues. It will also continue whether Liberty Media and I are there or not and whether Ferrari is there or not.”
“I do not think we would have a better Formula 1 without Ferrari, so we have to find solutions along with Ferrari. But we can not face a situation where a team – be it Ferrari, Mercedes or Renault – determines what we do. You cannot run a sport where you do what a participant orders.”
Brawn was part of the famed Ferrari dream team headed by Ferrari president (at the time) Luca Montezemolo and included Jean Todt as race director, Brawn as chief technical officer, Rory Byrne as designer, Paolo Martinelli as head of the engine department with Michael Schumacher doing the driving.
Today it a very different team with Marchionne calling the shots and a Formula 1 world title eludes them since Kimi Raikkonen scored his over a decade ago.
Big Question: Will Ferrari and Formula 1 find common ground and exist in harmony beyond 2020?