Smaller teams need handout to survive, say Sauber

Sauber team principal has backed plans for F1 handout

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The Sauber team principal, Monisha Kaltenborn, has backed plans for Formula One’s smaller teams to receive a £12.5m handout to boost their chances of survival. It is hoped the details of the proposal will be finalised ahead of this weekend’s race in Brazil.

The sport found itself in a precarious state during the US Grand Prix weekend, after Caterham and Marussia were forced to go into administration in the build-up.

Determined to highlight the disparity in revenues between the more powerful teams and the smaller ones, Sauber, Force India and Lotus considered boycotting the race. Only an intervention by Donald Mackenzie, co-chairman of the sport’s commercial rights holders CVC, prevented what would have been a disaster for Formula One.

Mackenzie must now decide on the proposal whereby the smaller teams are given additional money to top up existing annual payments based on their final position in the constructors’ championship.

 Red Bull’s team principal, Christian Horner, has already said such funds would not solve the problems of the smaller teams. But Kaltenborn disagrees.

“I believe the figures we have been discussing amongst us are at a decent level and can allow us to be in the sport decently,” she said.

“That’s all we say, the rest is up to us. We’re not asking for a solution whereby dreams come true and we have a comfortable, cushy life.

“No, all we say is you have to be allowed, from the income the sport generates, to have a decent living so you’re not struggling every month, every year to make ends meet.”

Caterham and Marussia, renamed Manor Racing, have both lodged entries to compete in next season’s World Championship as part of the administrators’ attempts to attract new owners.