F1 Concorde talks should be ‘behind closed doors’

Sun, 7 May 2023, 10:00

May 7 (GMM) Liberty Media boss Greg Maffei wants to kick off negotiations for the next Concorde Agreement.

The last commercial agreement binding the teams to the FIA and Formula 1’s Liberty Media-owned commercial rights was inked during the covid year – 2020.

At the time, although a deal with all the teams was ultimately agreed through 2025, the negotiations were fraught.

“What frustrated me was that we, as the teams, are not capable of really joining up to have a common standpoint,” Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said at the time.

But with F1’s popularity now booming, Liberty CEO Maffei said in Miami that he wants to kick off post-2025 Concorde talks with the teams “while the iron is hot”.

“I think there is a consensus between the FIA, the teams and us that now is a good time to do so,” he said.

“There is no obligation to do it right now and there are no risks if it is not done, but there is no reason to postpone it until the last moment, as before.”

As for the typically troubled earlier talks flagged by Wolff, Maffei thinks new F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali has succeeded in “changing the dynamics” of the relationship between the rights holder and the teams.

“Now we have a more positive relationship and everyone understands the benefits of an early renewal of the agreement, which will provide certainty for all participants.”

When asked about Liberty’s desire for early talks, Wolff now says he hopes the negotiations take place “behind closed doors”.

“We haven’t really started talking properly,” said the Mercedes boss. “But that’s going to happen soon.

“But it should happen in a constructive way, not maybe live broadcasted and creating controversy.”

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