Not everyone can enter Formula 1 just like that. As a new team you have to dig deep into your pockets, which makes it an investment in depth to even be part of the grid. It is certainly not a positive situation for new teams to have to cough up 200 million dollars. Benjamin Durand, co-founder of potential newcomer Panthera, admits that. However, he does believe it is ‘a good thing’ for the sport.
That $ 200 million will be divided among the existing ten F1 teams. All current formations have agreed to this amount in the recently signed Concorde Agreement. Against RaceFans Durand tells about the amount that might throw a spanner in the works of Panthera. “We expected it. For us it is something that has been discussed for quite some time.” He estimated the costs between $ 80 and $ 120 million, but it turned out to be much higher. “Obviously it’s not good news, but it’s not necessarily news, we expected it. It clearly makes things more difficult. After all, it’s easier to find 100 million than 300 million.
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According to Durand, the staggering amount will encourage newcomers not to come up with a new team, but to buy an existing team. He takes the example of Williams, who he says sold for less than 200 million. The buyers are therefore already provided with all necessary facilities. Despite all this, Durand is confident the sky-high entry fee is good for the sport as it protects existing teams. So it remains to be seen whether Panthera will eventually appear on the grid as a new team. Due to the postponement of the new technical regulations, the planned participation had already been postponed to 2022.