F1 future becomes ‘critical’ in July – Tost

Franz Tost
Franz Tost

The situation in Formula 1 will become "very critical" if the current shutdown period continues beyond July.

That is the view of Franz Tost, boss of one of the smallest teams on the grid – Red Bull-owned Alpha Tauri.

"If we start competing in July, we will come out with a black eye," he told the German language motorsport-total.com. "If we don't start, it will be very critical."

The Austrian says his Italian-based team has already calculated the cost of the current race postponements, which will now stretch all the way to June.

"When we don't contest a grand prix, it costs us one and a half to two million," said Tost.

And if that continues, he explained: "If nothing happens throughout the year, it will be a very critical matter. If you have no income, it is obviously an economic disaster."

MotoGP boss Carmelo Ezpeleta is now saying that even if no premier motorcycle races happen in 2020, the organisation will still pay the teams each month.

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But in F1, Haas boss Gunther Steiner insists: "If we don't have a world championship, it will be difficult for many teams to survive."

However, there are efforts being made to dramatically cut costs and lower the 2021 budget cap, but – as is always the case in Formula 1 – there are disputes.

"I believe that problems always have to be tackled positively," said Steiner. "A problem also creates new opportunities.

"If we all work together, pull all ten teams together, we may even get out of this situation better. For the sport and for everyone."

Tost agrees: "We need to wait and see which races we have, what income we have and how it looks with the sponsors. Do they stay, do they disappear? What does the whole economic situation look like?

"We have to face reality to find out where we are economically," he added. "Then we have to sit down and say 'This is the challenge we are facing and we have only this money and that money left'.

"Only Liberty Media can give us a starting point. They are responsible for the money from sponsors, from television rights, from organizers, which they then distribute to us.

"If they cannot distribute anything, we don't have much to spend either. Now, we wait and see," said Tost.

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