Ferrari set to keep historic 'bonus' in new Concorde deal

Ferrari logo. 29.02.2024. Formula 1 World Championship, Rd 1, Bahrain Grand Prix, Sakhir, Bahrain, Practice Day -, EMail: © Copyright: Batchelor / XPB Images
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Discussions over the next version of the Concorde Agreement which lays down the terms under which teams take part in Formula 1 are currently underway, with Ferrari's unique historic bonus a main point of contention.

Part ohe agreement addresses the sport's regulatory framework while another deals with the commercial terms including how much the teams receive from the prize pot each season.

The current agreement from 2021-2025 sees teams receive a 50 per cent share of F1’s profits, although this is believed to have dropped to 45 per cent once total revenues exceeded $3bn.

There's also been a lot of attention over Ferrari's historic 'bonus', which was initially agreed in order to stop Ferrari from leaving F1 in the days before Liberty Media's acquisition of the sport.

As the only team to have competed in every season since the world championship began, Ferrari has received a payment that is at least five per cent of the entire prize fund regardless of its results on track that year.

The precise business terms are unclear but it's believed that as the prize pot increases, Ferrari's share increases before maxing out at ten per cent for anything over around $1.6bn point which is where things currently stand.

Many in F1 believe this is now not only an anachronism but also unfair on other teams competing in the championship and that it's time to end the provision. Ferrari naturally are opposed to this - and they aren't alone.

“I think Ferrari brings something special to the sport, we have to be honest about that," Williams boss James Vowles said last year. “If you ask an average person who they know in F1, you see that Ferrari is still a name that stands out.

"That's the truth behind it," he added. "They bring a certain level of heritage and recognition to the sport, so I think there's a reason these things exist."

A report from this week says that the Ferrari bonus is likely to remain in the next Concorde Agreement - but that it will be capped at a lower level in future.

A proposal in the current draft Agreement being circulated among teams is for the Ferrari bonus to be capped at five per cent regardless of the total size of the prize pool and to lose the additional 'escalator bonus'.

Asked in Imola about the current status of talks over the next Concorde Agreement, Ferrari team boss Frederic Vasseur refused to break the strict confidentiality agreement surrounding the negotiations.

“You know you can ask the question, but the question is for you, because you know perfectly that I will never reply," he said. "Enjoy asking the question, but you know that I will never reply!”

Speaking to investors, F1 CEO Stefano Domenicali would only speak in general terms about what was being considered. “We are in the process of discussion with the teams,” he said.

“The most important point is to keep the situation as stable as possible," he continued. "As you can imagine, we cannot go into detail of it, but as soon as we can, we will share what we can do.

“The situation is optimal to keep discussing with the teams, with all the relevant parties, the best way to finalise everything for a stronger future up to a longer term.”

He added that the new Concorde Agreement was unlikely to diverge all that much from the one currently in effect.

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