McLaren losing their shirt on F1

Brown has learned that to make a small fortune in F1, just must start with a large fortune.
Brown has learned that to make a small fortune in F1, just must start with a large fortune.

McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown has revealed that their F1 team is “losing lots of money" as they evaluate a possible World Endurance Championship entry.

As well as their F1 team McLaren have now committed full-time to IndyCar for 2020, joining forces with the Arrow Schmidt Peterson Motorsport team to form the Arrow McLaren SP entry.

Brown said although McLaren are “losing lots of money" in F1, they are sticking around because they expect the series to become “sustainable" under the budget cap from 2021.

Asked by if it would be sustainable to run outfits in three series, Brown said: “Yes. But right now we’ve only got two and we’d only do the third if it was sustainable and that’s why we haven’t jumped in right now under the rules that exist today.

“We are not comfortable we can make that fiscally work. IndyCar is a good business, we can make that work. We made that work. Believe it or not, we made that work this year, even with the fiasco of not qualifying [for the Indy 500].

“Formula 1 we are losing lots of money, but the new cost cap is coming in, sponsorship is going really well. We see the trajectory of Formula 1 becoming sustainable, so that’s why we are now looking at sportscars.

“If we can get a business model that works then we would enter, but what we are not going to do is enter another racing series, any racing series that isn’t fiscally responsible."

Toyota and Aston Martin have confirmed their place in the WEC Hypercar class from when it debuts in 2020/21, and after hearing Toyota will spend “north of $40 million", Brown has urged the series’ chiefs to keep costs under control.

“I think Toyota is going to spend north of $40 million," Brown revealed. “I don’t think you have to spend north of $40 million, I think you can maybe spend half of that.

“But I think the one who has the biggest checkbook we know historically is the one who wins. I think they need to come up with a formula where it becomes increasingly difficult to throw more money at it.

“So the $20-40 million range is where things sit and we want to be towards the lower end of that. But we need to be confident we can be competitive with that spend level."

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