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Steiner: F1 can't increase budget cap going forward

  • Published on 27 Dec 2019 12:25
  • comments 5
  • By: Dieter Rencken & Fergal Walsh

Haas team principal Guenther Steiner has stated that Formula 1 can't increase its budget cap after settling for a $175 million figure.

In 2021, a budget cap will be introduced in F1 in an attempt to bring the competition closer together and provide more chance for smaller teams to find success.

The major manufacturers such as Mercedes and Ferrari are required to dramatically decrease their spending practices in order to meet the regulations or risk severe punishment.

Haas, who joined the F1 grid in 2016, is "quite conservative" with its spending according to Steiner.

"We said we'd stick with what we got," Steiner said. "We are quite conservative with these things. We're going to do what we're doing and try to do it as good as possible. 

"The next thing is, the teams, when it increases and it gets decreased again, they are the ones who cry about it. You knew it was coming, if you have no wish and just do what is convenient at the moment, maybe that doesn't work."

Steiner acknowledged that it will be a difficult task for the big teams to decrease their yearly spend to $175 million. 

"What it is mainly, we are not going to make the gap bigger," he stated. "The big teams need to come down quite a bit. 

"Already for them, it's a difficult task to do. But the best thing to do is not increase the budget because then you make the gap even bigger."

Steiner added that small increases in the budget cap will have major implications for the smaller teams compared to the larger outfits, who have more scope for spending. 

"There would be no point in being here if the gap is two seconds," Steiner said. "If you think about it, if you have got a $300 million budget and increase it by 5% for a big company, it's not a lot of money.

"But for us, the 5% is 10% and we can't do that. The bigger their budget gets, the bigger the percentage number for us gets. 

"It's a very good step in the first place, but we need to see how it works, we need to see all the nuances and go from there."

Replies (5)

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  • 175 M is already quite a bit higher than what the smaller teams spend on their car, so it'll still give the bigger spenders some degree of room.

    • + 0
    • Dec 27 2019 - 17:09
    • I still have mixed feelings about this measure. I also think it still does nothing to address the main problem which is revenue. The pie will continue to be split in an absurd fashion

      • + 0
      • Dec 27 2019 - 17:56
    • I think we all do, time will tell how things go, but I think it's a very good move. It won't be season 1, methinks, but longterm it's a means of ensuring smaller teams can remain competitive while saving big bucks for the big teams. Problem is that even decent revenue cannot cover the kinda costs the smaller teams need to bag out to raise their game and catch up to the top. Evening it up so everyone would get the same would do zilch, because the smaller teams' struggle remain the same. It just ain't feasible. This way is the only way I feel we'll ever have a chance of a more even grid again.

      • + 0
      • Dec 27 2019 - 18:54
    • I am concerned about fairness, because that's directly correlated with manufacturers inclination to invest in formula 1. I would love the have the budget cap in conjunction with fair distribution of revenue. Sure, revenue doesn't cover all the costs. But it would cover a whole lot more if Ferrari wasn't taking a large chunk in what amounts to a participation award. Same thing to a smaller extend with Mercedes and Red Bull.

      • + 0
      • Dec 28 2019 - 04:02
    • I agree, and I too think that should be valued (and Liberty has already taken the liberty... uh uh uh... by evening it out, and intend to do further changes), however I just don't think it would be enough to even the odds on-track as it stands.

      • + 0
      • Dec 28 2019 - 07:01

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