The Formula One Teams Association called for a neutral successor to FIA president Max Mosley after months of discord and promised on Thursday to make additional savings after reaching an accord with the sport’s ruling body.
The often divisive and scandal-plagued Mosley has led FIA since 1993 and whilst FOTA will play no part in choosing his successor, its vice president John Howett called on the World Motorsport Council to elect a candidate acceptable to all.
“We would like to see someone independent, perhaps independent from any of us, either currently or historically. It would mean a much better balance,”Howett said.
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner told reporters on Thursday that additional cost cuts would be implemented. “Already the savings have resulted in 15-25 per cent saved and we will see further savings in the next few seasons,” Horner said. A break up was prevented on Wednesday when Mosley agreed with FOTA to scrap a planned budget cap and step down at the end of his term. Mosley's climbdown on the voluntary 40-million pound ($65 million) budget cap saw teams instead given a watered-down order to reduce costs to early 1990s’ levels.
FOTA had already implemented a series of cost-cutting measures themselves this season amid the global economic downturn, restricting on-track testing and the use of wind tunnels for aerodynamic testing.
Renault boss Flavio Briatore also hinted that FOTA would push for a return to some of Formula One's more traditional tracks, that have been dropped in recent years as the FIA looked for more lucrative venues.
“Even if the likes of Turkey are paying more money, we would rather have stadia that are full,” Briatore told reporters. Earlier this month, empty stands were an unwanted backdrop at the Istanbul Park Circuit, with only 36,000 tickets sold for the three-day event. Large banks of empty seats have become normal at F1 tracks in China, Bahrain and Malaysia as F1’s commercial rights holder Bernie Ecclestone has branched out to find countries ready to agree to lucrative contracts.
Both the Canadian and French GP were dropped this season after organizers failed to meet Ecclestone's financial demands.