Marrusia avoid prize money debate
Marussia are refusing to be drawn into a debate over prize money with Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone.
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Ecclestone has stated from this season only F1's top 10 teams will be allowed a share of the prize fund, which is to rise from 50 per cent to 63 per cent of the sport's operating profit.
Over the past three years, as per a deal with former FIA president Max Mosley in a bid to attract new blood into F1 following the high -profile departures of Honda, BMW and Toyota, the teams finishing 11th and 12th have been paid 10million US dollars (£6.45m).
Ecclestone, however, has decided the team finishing 11th this year - with HRT quitting at the end of last season - will not now be given the bonus payment.
At present, that rules out Marussia regardless of whether they finish in the top 10 in the constructors' championship.
The clause was included in the old Concorde Agreement - a tri-partite pact that binds the teams, commercial rights holder (CVC represented by Ecclestone) and the FIA to the sport - that expired at the end of last season.
Pending the FIA's signature on a new Concorde, Ecclestone has signed bilateral agreements with 10 of the 11 teams - with the exception of Marussia who seemingly remain frozen out.
Speaking to Press Association Sport, sporting director Graeme Lowdon said: "We can confirm we've not had any offer from CVC at all. At no time have we had any proposal."
Should one not be forthcoming for the remainder of the campaign, it means Marussia would receive nothing, even if they were to finish in the top 10.
After four grands prix this season the Banbury-based marque currently occupy 10th ahead of tail-end rivals Caterham, who instead would be handed the cash.
Despite the issue Lowdon was tight-lipped, adding: "Our understanding is all the parties involved in negotiating a new Concorde are not making any comment regarding various topics being discussed.
"On that basis we feel it inappropriate to make any comment at all."