Montezemolo calls for summit meeting to thrash out future for Formula One

Luca di Montezemolo, the president of Ferrari, has made his second intervention in as many days into the state of Formula One, writing to Bernie Ecclestone and the F1’s owners to call a meeting to discuss the sport’s future.

On Saturday in an interview with the Wall Street Journal, Di Montezemolo dropped a hint that Ferrari may consider leaving F1 and racing in sports-car competition instead. "Fans don't want to watch F1 races to see drivers save fuel and tires," that's not racing. Economy runs are for passenger cars and have no business in racing. The cars sound boring and look boring.

Now he has written to Donald MacKenzie, the chairman CVC Capital Partners, the owner of F1, asking for a meeting amid “worries" that the sport is neglecting younger fans and sponsors.

Interestingly, after Ecclestone stated he felt there was no need to involve social media companies, Di Montezemolo wrote that business such as Google and Apple should be invited.

He suggested that the meeting could be held in Maranello before the Italian Grand Prix in September.

It is the latest in a series of interventions by Di Montezemolo this year. Before the Bahrain Grand Prix in April – which was widely regarded as one of the finest for years – he said that the sport had become little more than “taxi cab" racing and fuel-economy runs.

The Italian team insist that this move is not simply a response to their lack of competitiveness in F1’s new hybrid era. The team are 171 points behind leaders Mercedes in the constructors’ championship.

A Ferrari spokesman said: “It is natural for Ferrari to exercise a proactive approach and discussions are ongoing at the appropriate levels.

"There is a need to act collectively with the sport's key stakeholders and to reflect on the bigger picture, with constructive critics in the interests of the sport, with an eye towards technology and another one towards the show.

"Formula One has been built over the years into a unique marketing and sporting platform and it must now consolidate its ability to attract global sponsors, engage with fans and make racing more exciting."

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