Scuderia AlphaTauri team principal Franz Tost stated that he laughed when he heard recently knighted Sir Lewis Hamilton had asked as to who he was. The peculiar instance took place during a press conference held before the Bahrain Grand Prix in November, which also resulted in Hamilton’s 5th consecutive race win.
The question came in response to a query put forward to Hamilton about plans for a driver salary cap. Press conference host Tom Clarkson stated: “drivers shouldn’t earn more than 10 million a year and should be happy to drive these cars”.
To this, Hamilton asked “Who said that?, to which Clarkson stated Franz Tost. What followed was Hamilton asking “Who’s that” to which Clarkson said “Team Principal of AlphaTauri”. This came with a perplexed Hamilton saying “Oh..Okay”
What Did Franz Tost Say To This?
“I laughed,” said Tost during an interview with Gazzetta dello Sport. “I don’t care if Lewis knows me or not. I am interested that there is now a commission that discusses the salary cap of drivers.”
As for the cost cuts, this was what Franz had to say: “The problem is not the pandemic but the cap on expenses,” “This year we are under [the budget cap] but already from 2022 it will be more difficult to respect it, also because a whole new car will arrive. Care must be taken.”
For those of you wondering about the proposed salary cap, this was raised at the recent F1 commission meeting, which saw the engine development freeze take place and sprint races becoming a probable method of racing for the future.
“As 2021 sees the introduction of a cost cap for the first time in Formula 1, various topics around controlling costs and how this overall objective can be achieved over the coming years were tabled during the meeting,” read an FIA statement.
“As part of this, a working group will be created – including the drivers themselves – to discuss the topic of driver and senior team management contracts.”