Red Bull cast doubt on future of FOTA

YEONGAM, South Korea Sun Oct 16, 2011 6:36am BST

A crew members shows Red Bull Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany a race information board during the Japanese F1 Grand Prix at the Suzuka circuit October 9, 2011. REUTERS/Kimimasa Mayama/Pool

A crew members shows Red Bull Formula One driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany a race information board during the Japanese F1 Grand Prix at the Suzuka circuit October 9, 2011.

Credit: Reuters/Kimimasa Mayama/Pool

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YEONGAM, South Korea (Reuters) - Formula One world champions Red Bull cast doubt on the future of the teams' association FOTA on Sunday after a meeting at the Korean Grand Prix to discuss two key agreements.

"I think that FOTA has reached the crossroads where it needs to deal with some of the key issues moving forward or we'll stop. It's as simple as that," team principal Christian Horner told Reuters before the race.

"The principal issues are obviously the Concorde Agreement, the direction that goes in, and fundamentally the RRA (Resource Restriction Agreement).

"If we can't find agreement within FOTA on that then what is the purpose of FOTA?"

FOTA currently includes all but one of the 12 teams, with tail-enders HRT leaving last year, and acts as a united voice in talks with Formula One's commercial supremo Bernie Ecclestone and the governing FIA.

The Concorde Agreement is a confidential contract between teams, commercial rights holder and FIA that runs the business side of the sport including distribution of revenues -- a perennial sore point.

The RRA is an agreement between FOTA members to keep spending in check to allow smaller teams to remain competitive and protect the sport as a whole in the face of global financial difficulties.

Both agreements are coming up for renewal.

Asked whether there was a risk to FOTA, Horner said: "If a solution isn't found on the direction the teams want to go in, then yes.

"They are the fundamental issues that need to be addressed."

(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Alastair Himmer)

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