Mike Stevens | Jun 23, 2009

FORMULA ONE MANAGEMENT boss Bernie Ecclestone has vowed to do everything in his power to stop the split threatening to destroy motor racing’s premier category.

Despite its perilous state, Ecclestone claimed the dispute between the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) and FIA President Max Mosley can be solved with a little diplomacy and negotiation.

He told The Times of London: “I have given 35 years of my life and more to Formula One. My marriage broke up because of Formula One.

“So I am sure as hell not going to let things disintegrate over what is, in the end, basically nothing. If you analyse all the problems — there aren’t any that can’t be easily solved.”

Core to FOTA’s clash with the FIA has been its opposition to a budget cap and any measures designed to create a two tier system, including Mosley’s recent proposal that Cosworth powered teams can run their engines without restriction.

f1_fotaEcclestone though believes Mosley would be prepared to drop all amendments to the 2010 regulations if the teams committed to Formula 1 for a further five years.

“We want the teams to commit. I’ve always said I don’t care what they spend as long as they commit,” he said.

However, reports during the British Grand Prix weekend suggest FOTA are not prepared to commence negotiations with Ecclestone and the FIA unless Mosley tenders his resignation despite signs he has softened his stance against the ‘Rebel Eight’.

After initially threatening to launch legal action in a bid to halt attempts to kick-off a breakaway series, Mosley has since backed down, imploring FOTA to reopen communications with the FIA.

“There won’t be any writ. I think we would rather talk than litigate. We are very, very close as afar as the facts are concerned,” he said to Sky Italia.

“It’s just if the teams want to sit down and iron out the last few difficulties.”

But according to the BBC, the teams were prepared to sign up to Formula 1 until 2012 on Thursday only for Mosley to change the terms of the agreement without warning and attempt to lock in the FOTA outfits for a further two years.

It is believed this incident was the final straw, prompting FOTA to issue a press release later that night announcing the launch of a new championship.

And with news now emerging that a number of the sport’s commercial partners, including the BBC, have called upon legal experts to examine their contracts, Mosley’s position is now considered untenable.

FOTA is set to announce its calendar and intentions for the new championship late next month, and is believed to already be in negotiations with circuit promoters and television networks.

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