FIA President Jean Todt is pondering whether Ferrari should lose its all-important power to veto F1 rule changes.
As the sport’s oldest and most successful team in Grand Prix racing, Ferrari enjoys a privileged status but also enormous power in Formula 1.
Beyond the perks and financial rewards, the iconic Italian manufacturer also has the ability to veto rules, although under certain conditions.
Historically, the FIA formally granted Ferrari its veto right back in 2005, but the concept was pushed forward decades earlier by Enzo Ferrari himself who requested the right when his cars were powered by a V12 engine while the bulk of the field was powered by V8s.
The Commendatore wished to secure the right to oppose changes in order to prevent anyone from attempting to ban Ferrari’s engine
As a former boss of the Scuderia, Todt knows all too well the power of the veto as enjoyed by Ferrari, which perhaps only adds to his will to rein it in.
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“It is decades that Ferrari has what is called this veto right,” Todt told the media in Abu Dhabi.
“When we are going to discuss about the renewal of the agreement, it is part of the things which will be discussed,” he added.
Ferrari last exercised its veto right in 2015, when it blocked a plan to limit the price of customer engines.
Future discussions between the governing body and the manufacturer on the controversial matter are likely to lead to a lively debate between Todt and the uncompromising Sergio Marchionne.
Todt insists however that he has no will to see Ferrari, or any other manufacturer, turn its back on Formula 1.
“Am I afraid to see Mercedes or Ferrari leave? That’s their choice,” said the Frenchman.
“What is sure, we don’t want anybody to leave. But of course Ferrari is one of the iconic brands. It’s a company, a team, which has been participating in every single Formula 1 championship since its creation.
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“So I don’t want to see Ferrari leaving, I’m not sure if it would be a good thing for Ferrari to leave Formula 1, because why it is a unique brand is because it’s such combined between racing and road cars,” he added.
“I think it will be also painful for Ferrari not to be in Formula 1, but that’s not my responsibility anymore.”
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