Earlier in the year, the F1 Strategy Group – compromising of Red Bull Racing, Mercedes, Ferrari, Lotus, McLaren and Williams – decided to scrap Todt’s plan to introduce a cost cap in 2015.
After the smaller outfits – Force India, Sauber, Marussia and Caterham – wrote a letter to the sport’s governing body suggesting an abuse of power from the Strategy Group, Todt organised a crisis meeting with all 11 teams on May 1st and asked them to come up with cost-cutting suggestions.
Talking to media over the Spanish Grand Prix weekend, Todt said F1 needs to decrease costs considerably rather than gradually cutting back on spending.
“My advice was make a contribution as to how we reduce the costs,” he said. “We know they have budgets of between $100 and $400 million, and the proposal they seem happy with is to reduce by $2 million, which is ridiculous.
“When we speak about costs we are talking about reducing them by 30-40%, and then we can feel comfortable. I have some ideas, some input. Now I want to see what the teams say.We will meet all of the people again. Hopefully they are sensible people and they come up with some sensible suggestions. But what was proposed was a joke.”
Todt said cutting team staff numbers could be one possible solution to decreasing spending: “We have too many people in a team. I was in Pau the other day attending a gala dinner and I saw a movie with Fangio, Nuvolari, Jim Clark and Jack Brabham, and there were maybe 10 people in a team.
“Times change, we must accept that, but between having 800 to 1000 people or 30, there has to be a proper balance. What costs money are people. It is big. Then we have the number of developments that are made, the number of parts. This is what we are assessing.”
Image courtesy of Octane Photographic