Leaked Details Reveal F1’s 2019 Budget Cap Won’t Cover Driver Salaries

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Liberty Media has pledged its commitment to reducing the costs associated with competing in Formula One, and we now have an idea how it plans to accomplish that.

F1’s budget cap will not apply to driver or top management’s salaries, nor will it cover teams’ marketing expenditure, according to German publication Auto Motor und Sport. The FIA is expected to present the guidelines that outline the limitations to teams Tuesday.

The new spending rules reportedly will be implemented in 2019, which will serve as a beta test, in that team’s won’t be penalized for exceeding the cap. Liberty will use the trial run to determine whether the proposed ceiling is sustainable.

Since it purchased F1 ahead of the 2017 season, Liberty has assured those within the sports that cost control measures is its top priority — though it needed to sort out what those measures should be.

One proposition was to limit the number of employees teams can have, but larger outfits — i.e. Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren — were opposed to the idea because of how much they would have to scale back their operations. Smaller teams similarly have been uneasy about a typical cap, as they feared the technology exchange between road car and motorsport divisions could help factory programs burry some of their costs.

The FIA’s plan is expected to alleviate both those concerns.

The cap reportedly will be introduced incrementally, such that larger shops can downsize responsibly, ultimately settling in the neighborhood of €150 million (roughly $175 million). And to ensure there’s no foul play by the bookkeepers, the FIA will appoint an independent accountant to each entrant.

These individuals will be based out of teams’ factories, but will be employed by the sport’s governing body.

Thumbnail photo via Red Bull Racing

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