Motor racing-Mosley warns F1 teams against writing him off


By Alan Baldwin

LONDON, June 28 (Reuters) - Motor racing chief Max Mosley claims he is under pressure to stay on as head of Formula One's governing body after opponents rushed to write his obituary following a peace deal last week.

"They made the mistake of dancing on my grave before I was buried," the 69-year-old Briton told the Mail on Sunday newspaper in an interview.

The International Automobile Federation (FIA) president suggested the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA), led by Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo, had made a serious miscalculation.

"It's no good the teams getting a PR agency to claim I am dead and buried when I am standing here as large as life. I am under pressure now from all over the world to stand for re-election," he said.

"I do genuinely want to stop. But if there is going to be a big conflict with the car industry, for example, with the FOTA teams, then I won't stop," he added.

"I will do whatever I have to do. It's not in my nature to walk away from a fight."

Montezemolo and FOTA came to an agreement with the FIA on Wednesday to scrap Mosley's planned budget cap and avert a breakaway series.

Mosley said he would not stand for re-election in October and looked forward to a quiet summer. It was understood that the FIA Senate, under Monaco's Michel Boeri, would handle Formula One matters in the interim.

A day later, the FIA president suggested that the deal could collapse unless Montezemolo apologised for likening him to a dictator. Mosley also wrote to FIA members urging them to stand up to the teams and manufacturers.


While expressing anger and astonishment at Montezemolo's comments, although he himself labelled some team bosses 'loonies' (lunatics) at the British Grand Prix, Mosley also dismissed the Italian.

"I don't really expect Luca will apologise or withdraw in the way that he should," he said of a foe, who has largely ignored the Briton's recent statements.

"Yet, on the other hand, within the motor sport world nobody takes him seriously.

"He's seen as what the Italians call a 'bella figura' (beautiful figure). He's chairman of Fiat but the serious individual who runs it is Sergio Marchionne, and I don't suppose he takes much notice of Luca."

Mosley said it was "business as usual" for him otherwise.

"I do not want to leave the president's office in a way where it was suggested that people from the car industry had pushed me out. If that impression is not completely dispelled, the clubs are going to insist that I stand again," he said.

"So I hope very much that it will be dispelled before we get to that point." (Reporting by Alan Baldwin; Editing by John O'Brien; To query or comment on this story email



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