F1: Webber Hits Reverse After 'Nanny State' Comments, Todt Backs More Cost Cuts Photo:
Mike Stevens | May, 06 2010 | 0 Comments

MARK WEBBER has shifted into reverse gear after slamming F1 host state Victoria as a "bloody nanny state".

The Australian, irritated at overregulation such as the prevalence of speeding and parking fines, made the comment in the wake of Lewis Hamilton's famous run-in with Melbourne police in March.

Then, when the Formula One circus had moved on to Malaysia, Webber's father Alan and manager/partner Ann Neal posed with a group of fans wearing T-shirts bearing the words 'Victoria The Nanny State!'

Webber's management has now written a letter to the government offering to have the Red Bull driver front a road safety campaign.

"It's something Mark is passionate about," Neal said. "It's not a knee-jerk reaction to the press he's had, it's something he has always done."

A government spokesman said Webber's offer was being considered.



Todt Backs More Cost Cuts So New Teams Can 'Survive'

Costs in Formula One must be further cut so that the sport's newly arrived teams do not fall at the first hurdle, Jean Todt said on Tuesday.

While announcing that he is pushing for KERS to return to the grid in 2011, the FIA President vowed to support new teams Virgin, Lotus and HRT, on the same day he intended to visit the Spanish headquarters of hopeful entrant Epsilon Euskadi.

"We must ensure the survival of those teams who have just entered the championship," the Frenchman is quoted as saying by La Gazzetta dello Sport.

"That doesn't mean I'm thinking about a spending cap for each team. There are many ways to reduce costs," he added.

A report in El Universo newspaper said Todt is hoping the reintegration of KERS will make F1 "the ambassador of new technology" and entice sponsors to return.

He admitted that Ferrari is never likely to support budget caps but said "there is obviously great disparity" in the funding of the current teams.

He also said drastic changes to the aerodynamic regulations must accompany the sport's new engine formula for 2013.

Spain's Diario Sport quotes Todt as saying: "These (current) rules give excessive prominence to aerodynamics and make overtaking too hard.

"Unless there are difficult weather conditions, then the car in front stays there throughout the race and this is mostly due to the aerodynamics," he said.

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