Chase Carey: F1 needs to prioritise competition over new teams

Start of the Mexican Grand Prix

Formula 1 boss Chase Carey says the championship would welcome additional teams in the future, but believes the priority must be on addressing the current competitive divide between the leading group and the rest.

Only three teams – Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull – have taken victories in the hybrid era, with a substantial pace divide having opened to the rest of the grid.

Toro Rosso’s podium in Germany marked the sole top three result by a team other than the aforementioned trio since last April.

The anticipated reforms for 2021 has prompted interest from some quarters, including a proposed entry from Campos and MIM, but Carey has asserted that a more equal playing field must be addressed first before new entrants can be considered.

“Today we have 10 teams,” said Carey during a conference call on Wednesday. “And historically we’ve had up to 12.

“I’m quite comfortable with 10. I think it’s a quality issue not quantity, obviously a certain quantity, but I think 10/11/12… today we have a competition at the front among three teams and not 10 teams.

“I think if we are able to make a competition among 10 teams that’s the much bigger issue than realistically if we added an 11th and 12th team we [would] just [be] making the group of seven that’s behind the group of three, [they] would then be the group of nine behind the group of three.

“I don’t think that’s doing a lot for the sport.

“We want to make the sport more exciting and inviting to potential new teams.

“We have a number of parties that have expressed an interest in the sport, I think they all want to see what are the rules are around the cost cap, see it finalised to know what they’re coming in to.”

Carey accepted that overall parity is unlikely to ever be achieved but outlined that Formula 1 should be in a position where each team stands a chance of competing for top honours.

“If we went from three to six to seven competing [for victories] I think that’s an enormous change in a positive way,” he said.

“You’d like all 10 teams, everyone to have a shot, you’re always going to have favourites and underdogs, that’s probably good too.

“I don’t know if pure parity is the goal you strive for and it’s probably not realistic, but you want an underdog having a chance to win, but it’s about the quality of the teams not the quantity.”