OllieF1
Clutching At Straws: Mosley Isn’t Ready To Rule Out Re-Election

Clutching At Straws: Mosley Isn’t Ready To Rule Out Re-Election

Just when Formula One appeared to be coming out of the darkness and heading towards the bright future of cooperation, Max Mosley has decided to cast doubt on it all once again, this time by reacting angrily to claims made by FOTA since the deal on Wednesday was made. The deal would have seen a breakaway series averted, FOTA’s proposals of cost-cutting followed and Mosley not standing fro re-election in October. Alas, that may not happen now.

Since Wednesday, it has been claimed that a series of rumours and allegations have been made by FOTA, and in a letter to FOTA’s chairman Luca di Montezemolo, Mosley voiced his anger at these claims and stated the team’s association has deliberately attempted to mislead the media.

In his letter, which was sent to di Montezemolo on Thursday, Mosley references the suggestions that FIA Senate president Michel Boeri has now taken over Mosley’s role in relation to Formula One, that Mosley was forced out of office and that he would have no ongoing role within the FIA.

Mosley has slammed FOTA and demanded an apology and correction to the statements made. According to Autosport, the letter was sent to di Montezemolo prior to Thursday’s FOTA press conference, where no apology was forthcoming.

We made a deal yesterday in Paris to end the recent difficulties in Formula 1. A fundamental part of this was that we would both present a positive and truthful account to the media.

I was therefore astonished to learn that FOTA has been briefing the press that Mr Boeri has taken charge of Formula 1, something which you know is completely untrue; that I had been forced out of office, also false; and, apparently, that I would have no role in the FIA after October, something which is plain nonsense, if only because of the FIA statutes.

Furthermore, you have suggested to the media that I was a ‘dictator’, an accusation which is grossly insulting to the 26 members of the World Motor Sport Council who have discussed and voted all the rules and procedures of Formula 1 since the 1980s, not to mention the representatives of the FIA’s 122 countries who have democratically endorsed everything I and my World Motor Sport Council colleagues have done during the last 18 years.

If you wish the agreement we made to have any chance of survival, you and FOTA must immediately rectify your actions. You must correct the false statements which have been made and make no further such statements. You yourself must issue a suitable correction and apology at your press conference this afternoon.

Formula One is run entirely by our 5-strong team without any help from me or any other outsider. There was no need for me to involve myself further in Formula One once we had a settlement. Equally, I had a long-standing plan not to seek re-election in October. It was therefore possible for me to confirm both points to you yesterday.

However, given your and FOTA’s deliberate attempt to mislead the media, I now onsider my options open. At least until October, I am president of the FIA with the full authority of that office. After that it is the FIA members clubs, not you or FOTA, who will decide on the future leadership of the FIA. Max Mosley.

Unfortunately for Mosley, this letter only furthers the perception that he is a dictatorial manager, and it also suggests that he no longer commands the respect of the teams – the very fact Mosley felt compelled to send this indicates that. Mosley is clearly clutching at straws. While Mosley does not need the support of Formula One fans, he cannot work against them either. And unfortunately for himself, this letter will only push more away rather than reach out to newcomers. It also shows a man who is desperately trying to retain the power he seemingly craves.

It would also appear that Mosley is taking the alleged actions of FOTA somewhat personally. The letter apparently did not come from the FIA, but from Max himself. While it is perfectly acceptable for the FIA president to write a letter or send an email, it does seem a little strange that in this case, he would put his name at the bottom. Perhaps the letter would have carried more weight if the FIA had sent it.

It is very clear that FOTA have no issues with the FIA itself. In the past, they have made it known they are unhappy with the governance of the sport, which could be interpreted as the FIA. However, it would seem that Mosley agreeing to not stand for re-election again in October was what finalised the deal on Wednesday. The very fact that Mosley is now bringing that into question leads me to believe that he is aware that this is the point that could cause the deal to collapse. Otherwise, he could have threatened a return to the £40m budget cap.

If FOTA now resurrect their plan to create a breakaway championship – and it would seem this is the only course of action for FOTA aside from backing down and/or apologising – we will be back to square-one again. Formula One will face falling apart at the seams, fans will be confused and in this time of financial turmoil, the sport will be further rocked through its core.

If it is all about Mosley – and it is looking more and more like it is – perhaps the FIA Senate need to think about what is more important to the sport it holds so close to its heart and that helps promote all the work the organisation does away from motor sport. Formula One, or Max Mosley?

Further Reading

Oliver White

20 comments

  • Okay, I found a definition on Wikipedia. Just to be clear, BlogF1 does not condone racial slurs of any kind. I’m sure donwatters, who has been commenting here for over a year now, didn’t mean it with any hatred towards anyone. Other than Max. Having said that, Mosley once called Jackie Stewart a “certified halfwit”. Let’s not follow the example set by the man and keep phrases that can be easily mis-interpreted out of it. Ta.

    Mosley is clearly a man who has little intention of keeping his word. I personally wouldn’t trust him as far as I could throw him. Thankfully I’m not in a position where I have to deal with Mosley. I therefore sympathise with the teams through all this.

  • Ex-F1 fan here, this year’s ridiculous (IMO) tire rule made it frustrating for me to watch the races, and the endless bickerings (diffuser, budget cap) turned me off totally. Now i just read the blogs to follow the soap opera that F1 has become. Anwyays, i’d like to ask… What’s so wrong about Mosely standing for re-election??

    Looking at it one way, this is an “elected” position isn’t it? If, as so many people like to say, he’s awful in a hundred different ways, wouldn’t the FIA representatives just vote for somebody else? So just let him run for re-election and watch him fail, whoopee-doo.

    Looking at it the other way, could it be that he’s good for the FIA as a whole but not for F1? Or more specifically not good for the objectives of FOTA? In that case, wouldn’t FOTA be the dictator here by demanding that he doesn’t re-run?

    Or is it that this upcoming “election” isn’t that democratic after all?

    Maybe i’m being naive or missing something, but this whole affair about whether Mosley should or shouldn’t run for re-election smells. As far as i know, in a democratic society, anybody with the right qualifications and enough endorsements should be allowed to run for election, and let the voters decide if they’re the right choice.

  • If, as so many people like to say, he’s awful in a hundred different ways, wouldn’t the FIA representatives just vote for somebody else?

    The thing is, in the past, I don’t think anybody has stood against him and run for the president. I don’t think Max has had much competition over the years.

    Sorry to hear you’re an ex-F1 fan now, but I understand why – the political nonsense is just ridiculous. All we really want is decent racing.

  • Ollie, sorry but that doesn’t answer any questions. Why would nobody run against him?

    Do they wake up one morning with “an offer they can’t refuse” lying next to them? That would make the whole FIA organization look like a farce.

    Do they not run because they have no chance of winning? Well if this election is truly democratic then it means Mosely deserves to stay as president, and if it’s not democratic, well that makes FIA look like a farce again.

    And what if FOTA succeeds in barring Mosely from running again? Do they have someone in mind to be the new president? Why not just sign them up to run against Mosely and let the most popular candidate win?

    Or does FOTA want to have no FIA president at all? Then the talk should be about re-organizing FIA from top to bottom, not elections.

  • Ollie, sorry but that doesn’t answer any questions.

    Your question (that I attempted to answer) being, why hasn’t the FIA voted in a different president, to which I said, nobody (as far as I can recall) has stood for election against Mosley. Erm, I’m not intentionally being rude, but that is an answer. 🙂

    Maybe not the best one, but as I’m not employed by the FIA, I think it’s a fair one. If nobody stands against Max, then the FIA have little choice than to elect him again.

    I’m not going to get into a debate about the FIA, because from what I can see, they do a good job at promoting various causes around the world, road safety etc…

    I do have an issue with Max though, because I see his management style as, well, no wonder he’s in the position he’s in now. He made his bed, now he can sleep in it. The FIA appear to be involved in far too many controversies, and I while we will never know the full details, one common denominator among these issues has been the president, and usually his stubborn and apparent non-negotiable attitude.

    Do [FOTA] have someone in mind to be the new president?

    They were saying either today or yesterday that they want an independent person. Someone who has no history with the FIA or teams currently participating. Although that line may have been a warning shot to Jean Todt, the former boss at Gestione Sportiva (Ferrari) – the Frenchman is one name that has cropped up and apparently the teams aren’t quite so convinced it is a good idea.

    Looking at it the other way, could it be that he’s good for the FIA as a whole but not for F1?

    Going back to your previous comment, I think this is probably true. I have stated on this site before that Mosley has done some great good while president of the FIA. He has helped Formula One at times, improving parts of the sport and all. But he has done an awful lot for general road safety education as well various other promotions and initiatives.

    It just seems that recently, his attitude towards Formula One has been declining to the point where he no longer wants to listen to other points of view. In any job in any country, that isn’t good.

  • If nobody stands against Max, then the FIA have little choice than to elect him again.

    Where’s Alia, she knows about this stuff better than I do!? I so need a section on this site called “Ask Alianora”.

  • Time for Mosley to go!

    I’m liking the new rule that was implemented earlier in the year (or late 2008) that the new FIA president may only serve two terms. Unfortunately, that rule does not come into effect until Mosley’s successor is in power.

  • Anwyays, i’d like to ask… What’s so wrong about Mosely standing for re-election??

    The president of the FIA needs to be someone who is prepared to put the interests of the activities that form the FIA’s jurisdiction above his/her own (a female President seems a long way off, but I can dream). The President must also follow the regulations pertaining to the office and be prepared to give way to democratic opinion where such provision has been laid out in the FIA’s documentation.

    Max has stopped doing any of that, which means he shouldn’t really be standing for election and people shouldn’t really be voting for him. Voting for someone with controversial opinions is fine. Voting for someone who makes a mockery of the office to which he has been elected is counterproductive and the FIA deserves better than counterproductivity.

  • The thing is, in the past, I don’t think anybody has stood against him and run for the president. I don’t think Max has had much competition over the years. {Ollie – 8 comments ago}

    Nobody has ever stood against him because Max has scared off all opposition so far.

  • Do they have someone in mind to be the new president? Why not just sign them up to run against Mosely and let the most popular candidate win? {bem – 7 comments ago}

    I think they have Nick Craw in mind. They couldn’t suggest a candidate openly because then Max would have squashed the plan flat like he did in 2004 when part of the FIA attempted to take power from him by preparing an opposition candidate for the following year’s election. So they waited for someone to naturally develop whose opinions they like and wouldn’t be automatically rejected by Max. That way they have a chance of getting someone who might be receptive to an opinion other than the president’s own.

  • Although that line may have been a warning shot to Jean Todt, the former boss at Gestione Sportiva (Ferrari) – the Frenchman is one name that has cropped up and apparently the teams aren’t quite so convinced it is a good idea. {Ollie – 7 comments ago}

    Last I heard he was promoting Malaysian tourism. He might be too busy to take up a job as President of the FIA…

  • Where’s Alia, she knows about this stuff better than I do!? I so need a section on this site called “Ask Alianora”. {Ollie – 6 comments ago}

    I’m here!

    If you want to put that feature on, feel free. A comment space where I can come along and answer complicated F1 questions on a frequent basis sounds like a good plan 🙂

  • Thank you both very much for your answers. So if all this is true, FIA in its present form is a farce and Mosley is truly a dictator. I’m glad i’m not a fan anymore.

  • So if all this is true, FIA in its present form is a farce and Mosley is truly a dictator.

    Sounds like it! “Max has scared off all opposition so far” sounds pretty wrong to me.

  • A comment space where I can come along and answer complicated F1 questions on a frequent basis sounds like a good plan 🙂

    I was just joking, but now I think it would actually be a really good idea. I’ll have a think about it for the next version of BF1 and speak to you nearer the time. Thanks Alianora. 🙂

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