FOTA has reached an agreement with the FIA that will see the threat of a breakaway series now put to bed. It was also revealed that Max Mosley will step down from his position within the FIA when elections are to held in October.
There is little secret that FOTA had proposed a series of initiatives they wanted to see happen in F1 including reducing costs over a period of time, instead of Max’s immediate 40 million Pound budget concept, and that the removal of Max from his position was also a key part of their proposal. Unhappy with the management style of Max Mosley, the teams agreed to extending their contract with F1 until 2012 if their proposals were adopted by the FIA and Max retired from his position isntead of running for re-election as he suggested yesterday.
What remains to be seen is exactly what the FOTA proposal initiates are and how the third and most important part of this agreement will also be handled. Bernie Ecclestone, the Formula One Management boss and representative of CVC (commercial rights holder), has been very critical of FOTA but the revenue division among teams and FOM is something the teams are very keen to change.
Luca di Montezemolo took the high road on the issue when asked about the deal saying:
“I hope that sooner or later I can do the same as Mr Mosley and have a bit more relaxation. I hope I can join the club very soon,” Montezemolo joked at a news conference following a meeting of the World Motor Sports Council.
“I think he has done a very good fix of the problem. When you have reached an agreement everyone has to help in the same way.”
John Howett of Toyota said:
“I am pleased that FOTA’s proposals have been endorsed and approved by the WMSC today,”. “This will ensure that we move forward on the basis of stable, proper governance and this will ensure an outcome which is very good news for all of F1’s many stakeholders.
“This has been a challenging period but thanks to the unity of the FOTA teams and the foresight of the World Motor Sport Council members, we have achieved the right result for F1.
“We look forward to working with the FIA Senate to achieve a prosperous and exciting future for F1 and its millions of fans around the world.”
Was Max out manuevered by FOTA? Was it a patent smack-down on the FIA? Max doesn’t see it like that and of course you wouldn’t expect him too:
“Well, I wouldn’t put it like that because they’ve got the rules with the changes and the new teams in,” he said. “They’ve got the rules they want and the stability. We’ve got the new teams in and the cost reduction. So that’s very helpful.
“As far as I’m concerned the teams were always going to get rid of me in October, well they still are. Whether the person who succeeds me will be more to their liking remains to be seen.”
The big questions remain:
What is the deal cut with the FOm on revenue splitting?
Who will take Max’s place? Jean Todt is still being labeled as a logica choice.
Is Max going to continue in role or will be be removing himself with immediate effect?
Is Bernie next on FOTA’s corrective actions list or was a deal cut with him as well?
Does this new Concorde Agreement include the return of the F1 Commission?
Will the teams have more say in where the F1 series races? Will Bernie reduce his costs and expense to the sport and its share of revenue to early 1990’s levels?