F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone has proposed to calm the urgency of the ‘customer car’ argument by offering more money to every grand prix team.
Amid suggestions that the furious row between backmarkers Spyker, Super Aguri and Toro Rosso is motivated more by money than a genuine concern about the legality of their cars, it is reported that Ecclestone is shaping up to cool tempers by revising the criteria by which prize-money is allocated at the end of each season.
Currently, only the top ten constructors receive annual benefits like travel expenses and a share of TV money; a factor that is believed to have motivated grid straggler Spyker’s determined effort to undermine its close rivals.
The Spanish newspaper El Mundo Deportivo, however, suggests that at an upcoming team principals’ meeting in Bahrain, Ecclestone intends to propose a cease-fire by offering to give prize-money to eleven teams every season.
With Prodrive arriving in 2008, the prize-money pool will then be shared among all twelve teams.
The move is likely to upset some teams who may be concerned about the dilution of their regular prize money. In another move of pacification, then, Bernie could increase teams’ prize money even further by decreasing the commercial rights holders’ share of income.
The meeting in Bahrain is scheduled for Thursday or Friday.