OXFORD: Williams has been kicked out of the Formula One teams’ association after breaking ranks over the disputed budget cap.

Williams says it has been “temporarily suspended” from membership in the Formula One Teams Association.

Wednesday’s move came two days after Williams lodged its entry for next season’s F1 championship.

That was in defiance of FOTA, which has been in talks with governing body FIA over plans to introduce a $60 million budget cap next season. Ferrari and several other teams have threatened to pull out if the cap goes ahead.

Williams’s defence

Frank Williams, the Williams team principal, described FOTA’s action as “regrettable” but “understandable”.

In a statement, he said: “As a racing team and a company whose only business is Formula One, with obligations to our partners and our employees, submitting our entry to next year’s Championship was unquestionable.

“In addition, we are legally obliged under our contract with FOM and the FIA to participate in the World Championship until the end of 2012.”

Negotiations

Twenty four hours before Williams went it alone to enter for 2010, FOTA had urged Mosley to tear up his proposed ‘budget cap’ plans if he wanted the teams to sign for next year.

This latest twist in the stand off between teams and F1 rulers comes just three days before Friday’s deadline for teams to enter next season’s championship.

Ferrari, which has been a feature of every season since F1 was launched in 1950, is threatening to pull out unless Mosley backs down on his controversial plans.

Both sides met on the sidelines of last weekend’s Monaco Grand Prix with Mosley afterwards suggesting a compromise was in the air. — Agencies

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