STONY STRATFORD, England (Reuters) - Formula One needs to make real strategic decisions at a meeting on Wednesday after talking a lot about change and delivering little, Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said on Tuesday.
“I think it’s a crucial meeting tomorrow. Really some actions need to come out of it,” the Briton told reporters at a pre-British Grand Prix event near the team’s headquarters in central England.
“The time for talking has now come and gone. There need to be some definitive actions following the meeting, which hopefully will be achieved.”
The sport’s Strategy Group, which includes six leading teams (Mercedes, Ferrari, Red Bull, McLaren, Williams and Force India) along with the commercial rights holder and governing FIA, is due to meet in London before the sport gathers at Silverstone this weekend.
Previous meetings have produced meager results, with the main headline-grabbing decision from the last one being a return to refueling — an idea which now lacks support.
Concerned about dwindling audiences, even though Silverstone expects a record crowd of 140,000 on Sunday thanks to the local pulling power of world champion Lewis Hamilton, the sport wants to make cars lighter, noisier, faster and more aggressive looking from 2017.
“There is definitely some urgency to see some improvements made, to make it a more exciting sport,” Donald Mackenzie, chairman of commercial rights holders CVC, told motorsport.com separately.
Red Bull’s partners Renault, and others, also want to be allowed to develop their engines during 2016 to close the gap on Mercedes.
However Horner said the group, which he dismissed only a week ago as ‘inept’, needed to look at the bigger picture more than the detail.
“The whole purpose of that group is to decide the strategic direction of the sport in the future, it’s not there to finalize regulations,” said Horner, who has advocated appointing an independent and highly respected figure such as former principal Ross Brawn to help write the rules.
“What we need to do is all get onto the same page. It’s a key element to tomorrow’s meeting,” said Horner. “There are some concepts that will be put on the table tomorrow and I think it’s important we converge on a majority position.
“It’s time to take some action now. We’ve talked a lot, and now we need to dictate a strategic direction for the sport. That’s what we need to focus on and achieve out of tomorrow’s meeting.”
Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Clare Lovell