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LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - APRIL 13: Formula One Group President and CEO Stefano Domenicali arrives at a topping out event for the Las Vegas Grand Prix paddock building on April 13, 2023 in Las Vegas, Nevada. The Formula 1 Las Vegas Grand Prix inaugural race weekend is scheduled to take place November 16-18, 2023, with the race itself to begin on the night of November 18. (Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images)

Domenicali: ‘More teams on the grid ? Soon a decision’

The F1 CEO admitted an agreement with the FIA for the future of the sport is currently being found

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F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali admitted an agreement with the FIA is currently being discussed to evaluate whether to open the grid to new teams with a decision on the matter potentially being announced in the short term. 

The front row of the grid during the F1 Grand Prix of Azerbaijan at Baku
The front row of the grid during the F1 Grand Prix of Azerbaijan at Baku. Image Credit: Red Bull Content Pool

Talks surrounding the potential entrance of more teams on the Formula 1 grid have been going around the Circus for some time now. On one side, some argue that enlargening the grid would result in more competition and more talent being brought into the sport. On the other side, existing teams argue against the financial risk that would be created by new teams as the value of the teams as well as the final price would be diluted if more teams were to join.

Recently, FIA President Mohammed Ben Sulayem has openly supported the quest to include new competitors, especially to attract the American and Chinese markets. Contrarily, Mercedes Team Principal Toto Wolff has been amongst the most reluctant on the matter.

For the time being, the FIA launched an application process for prospective Formula 1 teams back in February. Yet, Liberty Media CEO Greg Maffei and F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali remain sceptical.

Maffei: ‘The bar is very high for new teams’

On his side, Maffei clarified that Liberty Media’s main interest is in assuring the success of the current grid, as he told Autosport: “We have 10 great teams, and we’re very excited about what they’re doing. There was a process to add more teams, but the bar is very high. And it’s unclear what value an 11th team would add. And there is a lot of uncertainty among the other teams about an 11th team.

“The FIA and we have had productive discussions about all this. Do we agree on everything, every moment? No, we discuss it, and we hopefully work things out.”

Domenicali: ‘A decision likely to come in September’

Moreover, F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali assured talks between the FIA and F1 are currently ongoing on the matter with news possibly coming sooner rather than later: “The FIA started the process, as is their possibility. We are waiting for the final conclusion.

“But as always in this discussion, we’ll find agreement together, because as [Maffei] said the value of the teams and value of the business today is very, very strong. That decision, that information, will come very, very soon, I would say within the month of September.”

Headline Image: Ethan Miller/Getty Images

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