Zak Brown discusses how the FIA may scrap sprint events with large teams holding out for an increased budget.
The FIA introduced sprint qualifying as a shortened fast-paced racing exhibition. It debuted at Silverstone in 2021 with the seven-time world champion snatching three points and pole position.
However, the FIA may scrap the new format as quickly as introduced. The series had an agreement in principle to continue to expand these events. The caveat was that it requires ratification from eight of the ten teams. A few of the larger teams are asking for an increase in the budget cap following more racing.
Brown feels these asks are exploitative. “A couple of teams, and one team, in particular, wanted a $5m budget cap increase, which was just ridiculous,” he said.
“And no rational facts behind it. When you challenge them, they go to what if and could, and you’ve got to anticipate. You sit there and go, this is just nonsense,” he further added.
The teams hold all the cards because of the majority required. The McLaren boss thinks they may not find a way forward in time.
Read my perspective on the priorities for the sport in 2022 and our year ahead at McLaren Racing.https://t.co/BsPC7Ap9dZ
— Zak Brown (@ZBrownCEO) January 17, 2022
Zak Brown believes that team principals have too much influence over FIA decisions
Toto Wolff’s pleading to Micheal Masi has been making the rounds online. Yet, Brown thinks this is a part of a more significant problem in the sport. He describes it as an example of the say larger teams had in-race decisions.
“Abu Dhabi is just one of them, and let’s not forget that the teams had a big say in how the sport is policed,” Brown said.
Moreover, on the mic between race control and teams, he said, “We see it created some habits that have created some decisions that maybe weren’t the right decisions.”
Teams have discussed many changes since Abu Dhabi. Yet, teams still have to see what steps the FIA will take to address concerns.