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2016 F1

Row brewing over Formula 1 income proposal

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Bernie Ecclestone - Formula 1

Bernie Ecclestone – Formula 1

A row over the future of F1’s income distribution system is brewing.

A few days ago, Bernie Ecclestone declared that Toto Wolff should not get ready to bank Mercedes’ huge championship ‘bonus’ payment because he wants to rethink the entire system.

“He can’t do that,” Red Bull’s Dr Helmut Marko told Brazil’s Globo in Austria. “We have a contract until 2020.”

But F1 supremo Ecclestone’s comments come amid a European Commission investigation into the distribution and governance systems in F1, prompted by complaints made by Sauber and Force India.

“Definitely we support the comments of Bernie,” Sauber chief Monisha Kaltenborn said.

“It may be that it relates to our decision to question the system with the EU.”

Force India’s Bob Fernley has a similar suspicion.

“There’s something behind this initiative of Bernie’s,” the team deputy said. “We don’t know what it is, but if he’s saying something now it’s because something happened — he knows something and needed to act.”

Told, however, that the current agreements are enshrined until 2020, Fernley answered: “Yes, but if there is an EU decision, it will have to be abided by.”

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