Szafnauer: Brexit issues “not insurmountable”

Racing Point team principal and CEO Otmar Szafnauer has played down Toto Wolff’s concerns over the United Kingdom leaving the European Union.

Earlier in the day, Mercedes boss Toto Wolff was asked for his opinions on ‘Brexit’ and what issues that could cause for the team.

In response, Wolff said that Brexit was a “major concern” and that he foresees “major disruption with borders” that can “massively damage the F1 industry in the UK”.

When Wolff’s opinions were put to Szafnauer, he responded by┬ásaying that whilst he understood the potential hurdles, he did not share the same level of concern as the Mercedes boss.

“They [Mercedes] are probably studying it more than I am. I’m not sure why he thinks it’s a big risk,” said Szafnauer.

“Maybe parts going back and forth could be an issue, we do buy parts from European supply bases, but I don’t know enough about it. I don’t think Brexit would stop those parts, we might have to pay a duty on them.

“[Customs clearance issues] I think would eventually be okay. For example, we buy our fuel cells from an American company. They come in. They’re not part of the EU. We don’t have an issue. So, I think yeah there might be an initial difficulty but, over time, I think that will plan out.”

He added that the situation would be simpler without a ‘hard Brexit’, but he believed the potential hurdles were ‘not insurmountable’.

“It all depends on what Brexit looks like,” he added.

“For sure, it would be easier if we didn’t have a hard Brexit. For sure.

“There are issues, I don’t think any of them are insurmountable, but the first time you face those issues, and if your calendar is so tight, it might have an impact.

“Had we have had a triple header with Britain in between, and you throw Brexit at it, it might have an impact.”

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Luke Murphy

As an FIA-accredited motor sport journalist, degree-level Motorsport Engineer and amateur karter, Luke's passion for motor sport is evident. He is one of the editors at FormulaSpy and one of the longest-standing members of the team.

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