Brexit would give Ferrari an advantage says Wolff

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton celebrates with his team after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix last year

Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton celebrates with his team after the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix last year

With 39 days left to Brexit, the ratification of the EU-UK divorce agreement has stalled in the British parliament, raising the risk that Britain could leave without an agreement in place to cushion economic disruption.

Toto Wolff believes Brexit will leave British-based Formula One teams at a major disadvantage - and a no-deal outcome would be a nightmare for the industry.

"We are looking at the various scenarios with Mercedes-Benz UK because it not only impacts Formula 1 but it impacts also the mother brand in terms of getting cars and parts in and out of the country", Wolff told the media in Barcelona on Monday.

"If a no-deal Brexit happens like it is being discussed, it would have a major impact in terms of our operation going to the races and getting our auto developed and ready". That would mean Ferrari, Mercedes' biggest challenger in recent years, but it also includes the other Italian team, Toro Rosso; Haas, based in the United States; and Switzerland-based Alfa Romeo.

Wolff says he and David Richards, the head of the governing body for British motorsports, have discussed writing a letter to the United Kingdom government to make their concerns clear. When asked by RaceFans, Wolff denied teams had been short-sighted by failing to prepare for the possible consequences sooner. It is the mother of all messes.

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According to the Motorsport Industry Association, Britain's "Motorsport Valley" has an annual turnover of some 9 billion pounds (about 11.63 billion USA dollars) with British motorsport employing at least 41,000 people.

With Red Bull being one of seven F1 teams based in the UK, Horner suggested that his team at least will look to avoid making any kneejerk reactions until the situation is more clear.

Wolff fears that an ugly Brexit will give an advantage to those teams based on the European continent. Our people are moving in and out of the country getting parts at the last minute, and any major disruption at borders or with taxes would massively damage the F1 industry in the UK.

"Our team is an global team", he added. We are German vehicle brand that has its own Formula 1 operations in the United Kingdom we have many different nationalities.

Wolff said there were no doubts in his mend that "no-deal Brexit or Brexit" would be "damaging to what for me is one of the outstanding industries in the UK". "I don't think any of us can actually answer that question", he said. "It is the mother of all messes".

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