Ferrari’s Formula 1-related losses due to the pandemic will hit the company to the tune of tens of millions of dollars, according to CEO Louis C Camilleri.
F1 has been working hard to protect teams against the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic that has led to widespread disruption to sporting calendars and so far resulted in no fans being allowed to attend races. Promoters are not paying their usual race hosting fees due to the lack of spectators, meaning that income for the sport’s other stakeholders is greatly reduced, and Camilleri said sponsorship has also been hurt.
“F1 this year will be, in terms of the profit and loss, the biggest hit we face because of the reduction in the revenues we receive from the Commercial Rights Holder, as well as reductions in sponsorship given the reduction in races,” Camilleri said. “It is clearly in the high tens of millions in terms of the hit.
“We’ll see in terms of next year it should be better – hopefully we’ll be back to a full race schedule, and we’ll get the necessary revenue in terms of sponsorship and from the Commercial Rights Holder. It’s difficult to compare 2020 to 2021, but definitely in 2020 it is a very sizable hit as we had anticipated in early May.”
Camilleri said Ferrari has to work on that projection given the current number of races, adding: “So far the official calendar is 13 races. We will see what FOM and FIA does in terms of announcing further races but today it is only 13.”
Ferrari has also been struggling from a performance standpoint compared to the likes of Mercedes, but Camilleri insisted that he still gives his full backing to team principal Mattia Binotto and the organization to improve the situation.
“The starting point is there’s no denying that we’re facing a very difficult season with a car that lacks performance on several levels,” he said. “Our competitors, Mercedes in particular, are incredibly strong, and hats off to them. I can assure you the team is working day and night to improve the car.
“Although we have to recognize many elements have been frozen by the regulators and the regulations put in place given the economic uncertainty resulting from the COVID pandemic, I believe we have a very strong talent pool that we will continue to strengthen.
“I have every confidence in Mattia and his team going forward. It will take time but the focus and determination to meet our ambitions remains intact.”