“I did not ask for more money” claims the FIA president as he responds to greed accusations. The new FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem wants to make the pinnacle of motorsport viable for years to come. Among other things, he is contemplating more F1 sprint races. Ben Sulayem has now defended himself against accusations that he is demanding more money for the additional races.
In the 2022 Formula 1 season, there will be a total of three sprint races. Plans to stage six of these races in the future have long been in the back of the minds of the Formula One planners.
Six races were originally planned for the current season, but there was no majority when votes were cast. For reasons of cost, three sprints remained for this season, scheduled for Imola, Spielberg and Sao Paulo. Sprint races are supposed to provide more spectacle in Formula 1, as the race weekend will be supplemented by another highlight, according to the organisers.
The fact that initially no agreement could be reached on the increase was reportedly due to the fact that FIA President Ben Sulayem demanded more money. The latter now defended himself to the “Daily Mail” and explained that they just need a little more time to make a decision.
“I support racing if it is the right thing to do. I’m not saying it’s the wrong thing to do. I’m just saying there’s still time to make a decision. The races are for 2023, not for this season,” The FIA chief said,
Ben Sulayem also pointed out that he was not the only one to decide: “Formula One has a vote, the teams have a vote, I have a vote.” He said he had the right to abstain and take the time to “study the proposals”.
Ben Sulayem continued: “I didn’t ask for more money, but if I had, I would have wanted to use it properly – to invest in proper regulation of the sport.”