Bernie Ecclestone says Ferrari's Formula 1 quit threat 'real'
The former boss feels the Italian manufacturer could leave the sport.
Last week Ferrari boss Sergio Marchionne dropped a bomb stating that it will leave Formula 1, if they don't get the returns it should, for being the longest-standing outfit in the sport, once the 2021 regulations have been officially rubber-stamped.
The FIA had released a blueprint of the proposed regulations, once the current cycle comes to an end in 2020. It will keep the 1.6L V6 Hybrid power units albeit a simpler and cheaper form, so that not only the manufacturers, but also the private teams can run on a limited budget.
While Marchionne sided with Liberty Media for cost reduction, however, the Italian believes the new changes shouldn't be implemented in a way where differences still remain within the manufacturers and the decision makers.
The V6 power unit remained the key topic, with various comments suggesting, it will not change the pecking order hugely, with both Mercedes and Renault also stating that the cost will only increase to comply with the new design for the engines.
Along with the regulations, another area where Ferrari could see a bigger fall is its bonus pay of approx 160m pounds it gets for being a heritage team and also for being in the sport since its first-ever season.
This week's Tuesday's meeting which will be attended by Marchionne will reveal further details into the new agreement, but the Italian hasn't held himself back with the 'quit' threat, if things don't go their way.
Former F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone, who thinks helping Ferrari is a good thing for the sport, and who has already helped the Italian manufacturer during his time, believes that the threats should be taken with more seriousness.
"If they can't win, they will put forward new regulations," he said to The Independent. “If the regulations come out where Ferrari think it is going to be a struggle and they can’t support the money then they will leave.
"They don’t want budget caps and all that. They want to spend what they can afford to spend and I’ve always said the same thing. If people can’t spend they have to go.
"If there are then only three or four teams something would have to be done but until that actually happens nobody is going to do anything. All the teams that say they can’t afford it shouldn't put an entry in."
The threat has received mixed response, with many believing it to be a gimmick from Ferrari to raise its bonus amount, but at the same time, there are many suggesting it to be real - since the Italian car manufacturer's profits has seen an improvement of approx 110m euros to be 400m euros in 2016.
With the amount of money the manufacturer is already making, it could mean Marchionne deciding to leave the sport, where they haven't won a constructors' title since the 2008 season and neither its driver has won a individual title since the 2007 season.