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Even Ferrari could quit F1
Alan Baldwin | May 22, 2004 12:16 IST
Even glamour team Ferrari could quit Formula One if costs are allowed to run wild, International Automobile Federation (FIA) president Max Mosley has warned.
The head of the sport's governing body told a Monaco Grand Prix news conference on Friday that while he did not believe the dominant team would take such a drastic step, it was not impossible.
He said it would be a "great tragedy" if they did.
"Ferrari have said that under certain circumstances they would stop and I'm sure they are telling the truth when they say that," he said.
"Certainly from Ferrari's point of view there could be an argument for stopping if things are not as they wish," added the Briton, who is pushing for major changes to cut costs and make racing more exciting.
"The two basic elements of the Formula One world championship really are the team Ferrari and the race Monaco," said Mosley.
"These are two things that everyone knows about worldwide, it would be a great tragedy if Ferrari were to stop.
"I don't think they will stop.
"If Formula One is properly managed and properly run and they can run fairly and nobody disadvantages them in some particular way then I don't think there's any danger of them stopping.
"But clearly if the costs are allowed to get completely ridiculous I think a lot of manufacturers will stop because it simply won't be possible for them to keep up."
Ferrari are the only team to have competed in every championship since the first in 1950 and have won more races and titles than any other.
The Italian team have won the constructors' title for the last five years and the drivers' crown with Michael Schumacher four years in a row.
Schumacher has won the first five races of the season, equalling Formula One's record start to a championship, but Mosley countered a suggestion that the German was having a negative impact on the sport.
"I don't think Michael's total domination has hurt the sport because this happens in many sports, you get a supremely gifted performer in the right team and they win everything," he said.
"Even when a man is on his own, as in heavyweight boxing, you get eras where there's just nobody that can challenge the person for a number of years. That's part of sport.
"I think what hurts Formula One is the fact that even down the field the actual racing is often not as good as we would like.
"We need to change the cars and then we'd get better racing. Michael has just done a brilliant job and when people do a brilliant job they deserve to be successful."
Mosley has issued sweeping proposals to change Formula One from 2008, when a 'Concorde Agreement' between the team, governing body and commercial rights holders expires.
However, he hopes for substantial change before then, possibly as early as next year on some issues, if at least half the teams agree.
Formula One: The Complete Coverage