F1 teams close to signing new commercial agreement

GREATER NOIDA, India Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:48pm BST

Mercedes Formula One team principal Ross Brawn follows the race from the pit wall during the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at Shanghai International circuit April 15, 2012. REUTERS/Aly Song

Mercedes Formula One team principal Ross Brawn follows the race from the pit wall during the Chinese F1 Grand Prix at Shanghai International circuit April 15, 2012.

Credit: Reuters/Aly Song

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GREATER NOIDA, India (Reuters) - Formula One teams have broadly agreed to a hike in entry fees next year and a new 'Concorde' commercial agreement could be signed very soon, Mercedes principal Ross Brawn said on Thursday.

The Concorde is a confidential commercial agreement between the rights-holding company, the 12 teams whose cars compete in the 20-race series and the governing International Automobile Federation (FIA).

It also sets out how much of the television rights money and prize money teams receive and is set to expire at the end of this year.

The teams, FIA and commercial rights holder Bernie Ecclestone have been working for months to hammer out a new agreement to secure the future of the sport.

"I think there was broad agreement on all the various points. There were no rebellions, let's put it that way," Brawn said of a meeting in Paris on Monday between all the parties.

"I think the level of the entry fee was discussed, the reasons why it needs to be what it is was discussed and in the end there was general consensus on what we're doing, so it was a fairly constructive meeting," he told reporters ahead of this weekend's Indian grand prix.

The FIA, who set the entry fees for teams to compete in the championship and are reported to be asking for a significant increase depending on points scored in the previous year, said in a statement on Monday that a final settlement could be reached in the coming weeks.

Brawn said there was no hold up to getting a new Concorde agreement signed as far as the teams were concerned.

"It's between the commercial rights holder and the FIA, that's where they have to sort out the detail, iron out any difficulties," he added.

"But there didn't look to be any major problems so I think it's just...a relatively short time."

(Editing by Alan Baldwin)

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