In a move which has all the hallmarks of a personal-political crusade, Max Mosley has announced his intention to re-stand as FIA President ahead of a crucial hearing of the World Motor Sport Council (WMSC) to resolve the FIA-FOTA row engulfing Formula One.
After being given a vote of confidence by the WMSC following his sex scandal last year, Mosley said that he would step down as President in October.
However, ahead of tomorrow’s crunch WMSC hearing in Paris, in which Mosley will go head-to-head with FOTA President Luca di Montezemolo and attempt to thwart the teams’ plans for a breakaway series, he now feels that he has no choice but to re-stand for election, a move which be believes is necessary to spare the FIA from what he sees as an unjustified attack on its authority.
In a letter to FIA club members, leaked to several news services, Mosley said: “Over recent weeks it has become increasingly clear that one of the objectives of the dissident teams is that I should resign as president of the FIA. Last year you offered me your confidence and, as I wrote to you on May 16, 2008, it was my intention not to seek re-election in October this year.”
“However, in light of the attack on the mandate you have entrusted to me, I must now reflect on whether my original decision not to stand for re-election was indeed the right one.
“It is for the FIA membership, and the FIA membership alone, to decide on its democratically elected leadership, not the motor industry and still less the individuals the industry employs to run its Formula 1 teams.”
“This (plans for a breakaway series) is an attack on the FIA’s right to regulate its Formula 1 World Championship but, worse, it is a wholly unjustified criticism of and direct challenge to the entire structure and purpose of the FIA,” added Mosley.
“No president of the FIA could allow this to go unanswered…we are also preparing legal proceedings in case these are needed to protect the FIA’s rights in its Championship and to discourage any dissident Formula 1 team from engaging in illegal acts.”