McLaren calls for F1 rules overhaul so “we all win”

McLaren boss Zak Brown says he supports Renault’s frustrations at Formula 1 B teams and has suggested significant changes to how the sport is run to ensure “we all win”.

With F1 management (FOM) and the FIA set to present its 2021 plans to teams later this month, the McLaren chief executive has called for a “realistic budget” cap and limitations to listed parts which teams can buy from manufacturers to reduce the current trend of B teams as seen with particular focus at Toro Rosso with Red Bull plus Haas and Alfa Romeo with Ferrari.

During the build-up to the Australian Grand Prix, Renault chief Cyril Abiteboul raised concerns about B teams which Brown supports along with how he feels F1 can improve to benefit all teams.

“McLaren is aligned with Renault’s view on the future direction of the sport. We need a level playing field, not just for McLaren but for the entire grid, that means fairer revenue distribution. I don’t think it has to be equal revenue distribution but fairer,” Brown said.

“I think a budget cap, a realistic budget cap, one that a lot of teams can get to through prize money, FOM money and sponsorship.

“I think Formula 1’s DNA has always been in constructors’ so I think equipment should either be listed parts, which makes you a constructor, or standard parts if we want to help teams that maybe do not have capabilities to make listed parts.

“But what I don’t think you should have are some teams supplying other teams but not all teams. I think that would make for a truer Formula 1, truer constructors’ and better for everyone.”

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Brown is also keen to see major changes in F1’s governance to prevent teams joining up to block potential rules from being brought in.

F1 currently uses a complex rule-making system which starts at the Strategy Group which consists of five permanent teams – Ferrari, McLaren, Williams, Mercedes and Red Bull – plus a sixth team based on highest constructors’ finisher which is currently Renault plus FOM and the FIA. Each team has one vote, with FOM holding six votes and the FIA also holding six votes, totalling 18 votes.

Rule changes are then voted on by the F1 Commission and the FIA World Motor Sport Council.

F1 teams have been accused of voting strategically in order to block certain changes which Brown wants to see addressed as part of a wider shake-up of the sport.

“I think the governance of the sport needs to be addressed because a lot of the rules and regulations put through get aggravated by teams aligning,” he said. “I think teams need to have a say and a vote but not to such an extreme where we can stop things from happening.

“Ultimately that is what the fans want and I think like great sports it should be different winners more frequently with different champions. I think we all win that way.”

FOM, with support from the FIA, will present its 2021 plans to all F1 teams in London on March 26 with topics expected to be wide-ranging from the mooted cost cap to sporting and technical regulation changes.