Force India chief operating officer Otmar Szafnauer has an opinion that could represent the other side of the grid penalty argument.
The much-maligned grid penalty discussion and the elimination of the current system by F1 technical boos, Ross Brawn, there are some who feel the grid penalty is working to maintain costs. Otmar said:
“If we had an unlimited amount of money, I’d agree with Ross,” said Szafnauer.
“Let everyone spend what they want. Then it’s a whole different formula.
“But you can’t say we have to control costs but not have this kind of stuff because they are incongruent, those two statements.
“We have to remember why they are there and one of the reasons was cost saving.
“In the old days, before we had a set number of engines per driver you can use, you could use one engine per race and that cost a lot of money.
“Next year we go to three engines per driver. How do you remove the incentive to say ‘well I don’t care if it’s three, I have the money to spend so I’ll do six?’
I spoke about the concern over a 4-engine limit and the impact that would have on the 2017 championship and I would double down on the 2018 concept of a 3-engine limit and suggest this would really impact the F1 season in a negative way.
I can say that all I want and this year has proved the impact of an engine limit has on the sport but is Otmar correct in that it may be one of the few ways to prevent smaller teams from being left in the dust?
Hat Tip: Autosport