Carey hoping for less drama in future Concorde talks as he confirms Ferrari special recognition remains
The recent signing of the Concorde agreement was a significant moment in Formula 1, setting out the terms by which all 10 of the current teams will compete until 2025. Speaking about the deal ahead of the Belgian Grand Prix, Formula 1 chairman and CEO Chase Carey said he was pleased to have a better structure in place – but hoped the process would be less dramatic next time around. He also confirmed that Ferrari’s special recognition remains, albeit with revised terms.
Amongst other things, the Concorde agreement is a commercial document which defines how F1’s television revenues and prize money will be distributed – and it was set to expire at the end of the year.
Whilst he wasn’t prepared to go into specific numbers or details, Carey told Sky Sports’ Martin Brundle that the new agreement achieves the objectives set out, even if the process wasn’t ideal.
“We thought the [old] revenue distribution was too skewed, so we’ve created a more balanced distribution still rewarding success on the track, but clearly making it something that gives every team the chance to have a healthy business model and the resources to be successful on the track,” he explained.
“And when you combine it with the cost cap [coming into force next year] we think those elements together provide the foundation for much better competition and a much healthier business.
“It was encouraging to see the way ultimately how the teams came together and supported this. In many ways I’d like the Concorde Agreement in the future to be less of a dramatic moment in time. These are franchises that have franchise value, and clearly the sport will continue to evolve and the relationship with the teams will continue to evolve. But I’m not sure the drama every five, six, eight years really optimises our ability to work as partners and grow the sport.”
Historically, Ferrari have enjoyed special recognition in the Concorde Agreement, and while he didn’t go into details Carey confirmed that the Scuderia will continue to get some extra recognition, having competed in every year of the world championship since 1950.
“Ferrari are our longest standing team, there has been a long historic recognition of it, so there’s still a recognition of it in some rights,” he said.
“I think we’ve addressed those, made them more targeted, made them more manageable as part of the governance structure. But yes, we continue to recognise Ferrari’s unique role in the sport.”
Looking to the future, Carey said plans were well underway for 2021 – including the return of fans to race tracks - despite the uncertainty around the coronavirus crisis.
“We don’t know what’s coming. We’re certainly planning on a 2021 that may not be completely business back to normal but is pretty close. It’s certainly a schedule like we planned this year with 22 races, we’re planning to have fans at races in the backend of 2020 schedule.
“We plan to have fans, we plan to have a schedule that looks like that, and I think the world is going to need to figure out how it moves forward, how it begins to do these things. In some ways I think it provides us an opportunity for these countries to show that they are moving forward.”