Ferrari and Red Bull leave Fota

Fernando Alonso's Ferrari
Ferrari blamed 'stalemate' in cost-cutting talks for their withdrawal

Ferrari and Red Bull have quit the Formula One Teams Association (Fota), raising questions over the future of the organisation.

The two teams were frustrated that Fota has failed to reach an agreement on the sport's Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA) which caps the teams' spending.

"Fota's drive has run its course," said Ferrari in a statement.external-link

A Red Bull statement added: "The team will remain committed to finding a solution regarding cost-saving in F1."

Fota was formed in 2008 with the aim of representing the interests of the teams when dealing with the sport's governing body, the FIA and F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone.

Up until this season, 11 of the 12 teams on the F1 grid were part of the organisation with backmarkers HRT the only team not to hold membership.

The organisation was successful in introducing the original RRA which defines a series of limitations on resources, such as staffing numbers, external spending and aerodynamic research, in a bid to cut costs.

The agreement - which is a Fota-specific document and not part of the rules laid down by the FIA - was created in 2009 as a stepping stone to a more detailed and wide-ranging arrangement.

However Fota was forced to investigate allegations that some teams might have exceeded the spending limit in 2010 and has since seen internal rows on how to move forward.

A meeting between the team principals at the season-ending Brazilian Grand Prix last weekend failed to reach an agreement.

"It was a difficult decision and a great deal of thought went into it," said the Ferrari statement.

"It was taken reluctantly after analysing the current situation and the stalemate when it came to debate on some issues that were at the core of why the association was formed, indeed with Ferrari and Luca di Montezemolo [who held the role of Fota president between 2008 and 2009] as the main instigator and promoter of ideas.

"Some of the major achievements of the association during these years, also worked out in conjunction with the FIA, centred around cost reduction, which was of significant benefit to everyone, the big teams and the small ones.

"Ferrari was on the front line in this area, even before the birth of Fota and it intends to continue down this route to ensure the sustainability of the sport in the long term.

"Now, however, it is necessary to find some new impetus to move it along because Fota's drive has run its course."

Despite their withdrawal, the Italian team insisted they remained committed to cutting costs but wanted to see more testing for younger drivers.

"Ferrari will continue to work with the other teams to make the current RRA, aimed at controlling costs, more effective and efficient, modifying it to make it more stringent in key areas such as aerodynamics, to re-balance some aspects such as testing and to expand it to areas currently not covered, such as engines.

"The number of days of testing must be increased so that the drivers, especially the young ones who lack experience, and the teams can be adequately prepared."

With a two-month notice period in force, there is scope for Ferrari and Red Bull to reverse their decision should agreement over the RRA be reached.