One of the biggest battles this Formula 1 season will be the scrap between the sport and its leading teams.

Liberty Media, Formula 1's owners, have put forward the suggestion of a spending cap to try and encourage new manufacturers to the sport while also helping level the playing field. But that idea has been met with serious resistance from leading teams Mercedes and Ferrari, who have even threatened to walk away from the sport altogether.

Formula 1 managing director Ross Brawn has the challenge of trying to balance the wishes of teams at the opposite end of the spectrum as well as trying to future-proof the sport while also keeping its core identity intact.

"The reality is every team has a different set of objectives," Brawn told Radio Sport in an exclusive interview. "There's quite a number of teams who want to do as well as they can but they want a more sustainable business model.


"The way the revenue is shared in Formula 1 at the moment makes it extremely difficult for the lower half of the grid. The top half of the grid are obviously happy with the results and want to maintain the differential they have but that sometimes to too big a range of performance across the Formula 1 field.

"I think we were fortunate last year in that we had good competition between Ferrari and Mercedes and that's what it is about but when you look down the field there was too big a gap between the rest.

"We don't want to take away the incredible performance of these cars and the technology and excitement but we do want to increase the opportunity for all the teams to be competition.

"That needs, I feel, changes on all fronts – technical regulations, sporting regulations and the commercial revenues for the teams to cut off the amount the top teams can spend and then bolster the amount the smaller teams have to compete."

Brawn, who has helped various teams he's worked with win eight drivers' and eight manufacturers' titles, has been criticized for dumbing down Formula 1 and removing that ultra-competitive mentality that has set it apart from other sporting competitions over the years.

"I think it is critical we have a vision of where we see Formula 1. I find it very frustrating that people accuse us of spoiling the DNA of this, that or the other," Brawn said.

"Formula 1 has a long history of incredible competition and it is the pinnacle of motorsport and why would we choose to damage that? I find it personally offensive when people accuse me of dumbing down the sport because we know if we did that we would spoil the sport at its core.

"The teams at the top at the moment are probably spending two or three times what they were spending five or six years ago and yet you wouldn't saying five or six years ago the sport was dumb so it is just a question of degree.

"We have to help the teams at the top recognize and realise that to have a sport for the future we have got to re-base the commercial revenues for the teams and we have to re-base the amount of scope the teams are allowed explore technically in order to give a more exciting competition."

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