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GP Week : Issue 46
> F1NEWS> Prodrive unsure about F1entry DAVID Richards has refused to confirm that Prodrive will tender for entry to the 2010 Formula 1 World Championship, amidst the huge uncertainties facing the future of the sport. Speaking to GPWeek, Richards made it clear that while the 2010 regulations go in the direction that Prodrive needs in order to make a viable entry proposal to Formula 1, the manner in which these regulations have been received by the current F1 teams has caused him some concern. “I have always made clear that we are very serious about entering Formula 1 in 2010, providing that it is commercially viable and there is the potential to be fully competitive,”he told us. “On the commercial side, we would want a situation where the sort of budget you would need to be competitive would be sensible, especially given the challenging economic conditions we face today. We would also want the rules to be such that they provide the potential for us to be fully competitive. We would not want to be in Formula 1 just to make up the numbers. “The new regulations announced by the FIA are very much in line with what we were expecting and, I believe, have the potential to allow a team to be commercially viable and competitive on a far more realistic budget. However, we are very concerned about the controversy these proposals have created with the existing teams and the uncertainty that this has created.” When asked if Prodrive would be entering an official tender for a spot on the 2010 F1 grid, Richards failed to confirm that they would, stating that the decision-making process was still ongoing. “It is important for us and our partners that there is stability in the sport with broad alignment on the future direction of Formula 1 and this will be a critical issue in our decision making process as to whether or not to make an entry.” Prodrive won the last tender for a spot on the 2008 F1 grid, but had to pull out of its plans when the ability to run customer cars was taken away. Richards however does not believe his team’s failure to make the grid in 2008 will stand against them. “When it comes to the FIA deciding which teams succeed in winning a place on the grid for 2010, well I am sure they will take into account a number of important fundamental criteria, ranging from the long term financial security of a team, to its ability to be competitive. I do not expect them to favour any one entry over another.”