July 8, 2009

Formula One again in danger of split

Members of the Formula One Teams Association walked out of a meeting with the sport's governing body Wednesday, rekindling the threat of a series split.

The eight FOTA members, including the powerhouse Ferrari and McLaren teams, had threatened last month to form their own series before a compromise was reached in Paris.

When those teams arrived for a meeting Wednesday in advance of the German Grand Prix, they were told they would not be allowed to vote on regulations concerning the 2010 season. That precipitated a walkout.

To go against the detail of the Paris agreement puts the future of Formula One in jeopardy, FOTA members said in a statement. The teams said because they were not able to exercise our rights, we had no option other than to terminate our participation.

Joining Ferrari and McLaren in the walkout were the Brawn GP, BMW-Saber, Red Bull, Renault, Toro Rosso and Toyota teams.

A departure by those eight teams from Formula One would leave just five teams, three of them newcomers, to take part in the 2010 races.