The McLaren team reacted to the publication of the new Formula 1 rules approved by the World Motor Sport Council on Wednesday.
The World Motor Sport Council has approved by e-vote further amendments to the Sporting, Technical and Financial Regulations governing the FIA Formula One World Championship, primarily designed to address the need to reduce costs and preserve discipline in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic.
Following an initial agreement to defer the 2021 Technical Regulations to 2022 (which was approved by the World Council on 30 March 2020), further amendments to the Sporting, Technical and Financial Regulations for 2020, 2021 and 2022 have received the unanimous support of the Formula One teams and were ratified today by the World Council.
One of the most important changes is of course the introduction of a budget cap from 2021 in F1. This cap was set at $145 million per season in the first year, then $140 million for 2022 and $135 million for 2023-2025, based on a season of 21 races.
The CEO of McLaren, who will have to cut 70 jobs in his F1 department, assures that this budget cap will not only reduce costs, but also, and above all, reduce the gaps between the different teams on the grid.
“Formula One is winning today. This is a crucial moment for our sport. F1 has been financially unsustainable for some time and inaction would have risked the future of F1 and its participants, who are to be congratulated for resolving this problem collectively and with determination.
“A flat budget cap, combined with a more even distribution of revenues among teams, will ensure greater competition and more people wanting to watch live and on television, generating more sustained revenues to support the long-term financial health of teams and sport. In the end, the fans win, and if the fans win, the whole sport wins.
McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl added:
“These are very difficult times for everyone. There have been months of hard work in difficult circumstances, but it’s great to see how, under the leadership of the FIA and F1, all the teams have come together to define the right actions to navigate through this crisis and work towards the future for a sustainable sport that will allow all teams to participate on an equal footing.
“While McLaren supports the overall economy measures, we are pleased with the compromise to provide teams with sufficient aerodynamic freedom to maintain the competitive element that is at the heart of Formula One throughout 2020 and 2021, until the new technical regulations come into force in 2022.
“It had been clear to everyone for some time that a budget cap would be applied and we pushed for a lower limit to support financially viable sport.
“It’s a big challenge ahead of us. Adjusting our way of working and properly sizing the team to this new ceiling over the next few months is a huge and painful task and, highlighted by our news earlier this week, will unfortunately result in the loss of team members, but our goal is to be a better, larger and more effective team in the future.
“The cooperation and understanding of our team members has been excellent and with the forced break ending on Wednesday it is important that the team has clarity on the different regulations, which will now allow us to start working on our cars again and understand the implications of the regulations for the future.
“We are now fully focused on preparing together with Carlos and Lando for an intense second half of the year with, hopefully, as many races as possible. ”