F1 should "put a pin" in team alliances, says Williams

Formula 1 needs to "put a pin" in allowing closer alliances between teams in the future if it is to keep a full grid in the future, says Williams.

F1 should "put a pin" in team alliances, says Williams

A growing move towards closer partnerships between manufacturers and smaller outfits has put some of F1's independent outfits under pressure to decide what they should do.

With Haas taking as much as it can from Ferrari, and Racing Point working closely with Mercedes, teams like Williams and McLaren fear they could get squeezed in the future if tie-ups become a cheap way to deliver success.

While Williams deputy team principal Claire Williams does not want to completely ban co-operations, she thinks a line should be drawn under how close some competitors are working.

"I think that we need to create a sustainable sport for all the teams," she said recently. "The work that F1 have done in recent times, particularly around the financial model, has been so important so that we can create sustainability and stability for teams like ours.

"All business models should have the right to survive, but also thrive in this sport. That's really important. And I wouldn't want to see a next step with this.

"I think we need to put a pin in this where we are now - if not take it back a little bit. We're not particularly happy with where things are - not least because it creates a two-tier championship.

"You want to create a platform whereby every single team in this sport has the opportunity to score points, be on the podium and win races. And at the moment, we just don't have that."

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Williams' concerns about the consequences of team running satellite operations are shared by McLaren, who have spoken out in the past about why they it is not a good thing for F1.

Speaking at pre-season testing, McLaren team principal Andreas Seidl felt that the hidden benefits of teams working in tandem needed to be headed off.

"We need to make sure that by, let's say, co-operations of two teams, you do not go around the rules and, for example, increase your resources by that, or have rotating staff," he said.

"When the budget limitation is coming in, we need to make sure that it's actually a limitation and it's the same limitation for everyone.

"It doesn't matter if you have a co-operation with other teams – which is okay and is also allowed by the regulations on certain topics. But when it comes down to the things like monocoque, aerodynamics and so on, where you're clearly not allowed to work together, this is what is important for me."

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Series Formula 1
Teams Williams
Author Jonathan Noble
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