What better way to fill the week between Christmas and New years than an intimate chat with former FIA president Max Mosley? If you’re looking for controversy, pointed accusations and general hand-slapping, Max is your guy. Speaking to Germany’s Auto Motor und Sport, Mosley has accused Red Bull of spending more money/resources on their program than the agreed upon amount outlined by the Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA) as approved by the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA). While F1B’s Mark Hallam is fluent in German, I have to use a translator so I preface this quote with the caveat of Google translator.
“At the last FOTA meeting, Red Bull asked for an exception,” Mosley said, “If that’s true, that can only mean they spent more than they were allowed. Now they’re asking for the other teams to give them the nod (or approval) for doing so.”
This gets more interesting if you juxtapose Mosley’s comments with the comments of Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz from the Q&A we mentioned here. Mateschitz clearly says that the other teams are spending between 100 and 500 million Euros and that Red Bull were somewhere in the middle. We now seem to have Red Bull asking for special dispensation for spending more than the RRA allowed for if Mosley’s accusations are correct.
Mosley clearly favors a budget cap and not a general range of resources as suggested by the RRA. Although I must admit I have not read the RRA, I would assume Mosley has and that he is not very keen on the loopholes or ambiguity of the document.
Mosley is not alone in his feelings about a budget cap as former Renault technical boos Pat Symonds also believes that less regulatory restriction and fully manageable budget cap are the way forward in F1 as he explained to the Motor Sport Magazine crew in their recent podcast.
If you are in FOTA, do you allow Red Bull an exemption? What measures or ramifications are there in the RRA for spending more than allowed? There was some talk of a healthy penalty that was distributed evenly to the other teams but that is pure rumor mongering on my part. How would you handle the situation if you were FOTA chairman Martin Whitmarsh? Is the RRA enough? Can a budget cap be the answer and if so, how do you manage it?