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McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh, who heads the Formula One Team Association, has fought a sometimes lonely battle for years to convince teams to embrace cost controls. He admitted current voluntary cost controls haven’t had the kind of impact he would like and says the answer is handing authority over to the FIA, which governs the sport _ something vehemently opposed by the big team who fear ceding too much control.

The FIA, however, has shown no inclination to take the lead on cost controls. Ecclestone, meanwhile, has expressed some sympathy over rising costs _ opposing the introduction of new engines in 2014 over their expense. But when asked about the issue in Bahrain, he said the complaints are nothing new in Formula One and the sport has carried on.

“There are always people who have lots of money and people who haven’t,” he told The Associated Press. “The British teams used to be a little bit short in the finance department and Ferrari was well supported and we were racing all the way thru. I am just going to see (Team Principal) Frank Williams now. (When) Frank started, I don’t think he had a budget. He was on a race by race basis. It’s always been like that. The world is like that. There are always people who are successful and people not quite successful.”

Others have said the answer doesn’t lie so much in cost controls but rather building up the F1 brand.

That, they say, will result in more revenue for everyone.