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GP Week : Issue 193
F1 >>> nEWs F1 backmarkers Marussia have finally signed a commercial agreement with Formula One supremo Bernie ecclestone in a move that secures the team’s future in the sport, potentially gives it greater financial firepower, and paves the way for the formal signing of the Concorde Agreement. ecclestone already has similar seven- year bilateral agreements in place with the rest of the teams in Formula One and an agreement with the FIA, making the lack of a deal with the Banbury-based outfit the only obstacle blocking the signing of the Concorde Agreement, the commercial tri-partite deal that holds the sport together. The agreement also means Marussia, currently tenth in the constructors’ standings, can now share in the pot of prize money traditionally on offer for the top ten finishers. Without a deal with ecclestone, the team wouldn’t have access to a share of the prize fun. “I can confirm that we have reached an agreement with the [commercial rights holder] and we have signed a bilateral agreement,” the team’s sporting director Graeme Lowdon was quoted as saying by Autosport. “We can't comment on any of the content but what we can say is that we are very happy to reach agreement.” The magazine also reported that one of the elements of the deal is the inclusion of a so called ‘Column 3’ payment, an additional $10 million payment separate from the prize money paid out to the new teams as an incentive to enter the sport and not pull out so as to compensate them even if they don’t finish in the top ten. With the grid reduced to eleven teams in the wake of spanish outfit HRT folding at the end of last year, ecclestone was keen to end that payment, the octogenarian repeatedly stating his preference for ten teams in the sport. But Autosport reported that the extra ‘Column 3’ payment also featured in deals ecclestone has signed with the other teams. “I can't confirm the content of the deal, other than to say that we are happy with the outcome and we are looking forward to the future now,” Lowdon said. “We can move on now as the other teams are.” MARUSSIA GETS EQUALITY 10 GPWEEK.com // 10 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: