News and views on motorsports

Saturday, June 13, 2009

The State Of Play

As of today, the situation is:

1. The FIA have published the entrants for 2010. Unconditional entrants include Ferrari, Red Bull and Toro Rosso. Conditional entrants include the remaining 5 FOTA members.
2. Ferrari, Red Bull and Toro Rosso have stated that their entry is still conditional upon the FIA agreeing to terms to their satisfaction and have thrown support to FOTA.
3. FOTA have declared that they will release certain information detailing why they think the FIA's 2010 regulations stink.
4. FOTA have implored the FIA WSMC and Senate to step in and help resolve this issue, bypassing Max Mosley.
5. The ACEA i.e. the European Automobile Manufacturers Association have thrown in their support firmly behind the FOTA teams. In a statement they have called for better governance of the sport, more equitable share of the sports revenues and at the same time warned that FOTA will have to breakaway if these conditions are not met. A clear slap in the face to Max Mosley and Bernie Ecclestone.
6. Max and Bernie have so far been silent.

I am glad that the FOTA teams are showing solidarity and unity on this issue and furthermore, I am pleased to see the ACEA stepping in and hitting it where it hurts. One trump card that Max have repeatedly used thus far for his draconian measures is his claims that the board of directors in the manufacturers would be in full support for his budget cap. Well, both the ACEA and Renault's Carlos Ghosn (Le Cost Cutter himself!) have stepped in and clarified that this is not the main point. The point is his governance of the sport and the share of revenues from the sport that is in question. Processes to govern and set the rules must be transparent and clear to all and it is this that is most important to them at this time.

I wouldn't put it pass Max to get himself out of this one but it certainly would be very interesting to see how he could. His professional credibility is now called into question in the most public manner possible by some very heavyweights.

With attacks from all side, including previously cowardly journalists, Max finds himself in isolation, something that is not unknown for him. Remember the whole sex scandal thing last year? In that case he could and successfully did defend himself on the grounds of privacy, this time its about his professional competence. And that is fair game.

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