Inevitable Max Mosley post #11

Max Mosley, FIA Gala, 2006, 470150

I wanted to ignore the inevitable Max Mosley stuff over the Spanish Grand Prix weekend and concentrate on the racing (at least, what little there was that passed for racing).

Pressure continues to grow on the FIA president to quit with sporting bodies shunning him and the teams considering making an official statement criticising him, and most importantly, Bernie Ecclestone turning against him.

The Israel episode

While attending the inaugural Jordan on Friday Mosley received an official invite to Israel by the country’s Minister of Science, Culture and Sport, Galeb Majadle. This could have been a significant step in the rehabilitation of the president in the public eye, not least because of the claimed Nazi overtones in the notorious video.

But within a few hours of the news becoming public the Israelis issued a public statement withdrawing the invitation:

The Minister, who was not at all aware of the scandal currently surrounding Mosley’s name, would like to make it now clear that his invitation was not intended to be personal to Mosley himself but rather to the representative of the FIA as a global organization.

In any event, once the scandal was brought to the Minister’s attention, he has requested to withdraw immediately any official invitation to Mosley until the matter is reviewed more thoroughly once back in Israel.

The phase “withdraw immediately” was highlighted in the original release. Mosley stuck to his explanation:

I fully understand the Minister?s position and look forward to resuming contact with him when the News of the World?s deliberate and calculated lies have been comprehensively refuted.

But any argument that the scandal is not interfering with his ability to do his job can surely not stand up in the face of this.

The teams’ discussion

The leaders of the teams met with Bernie Ecclestone on Saturday at the Spanish Grand Prix to discuss a response to the crisis in the FIA leadership.

According to Autosport the majority of them were concerned about the consequences for F1 of the Mosley scandal, but could not agree on what statement to make about it.

Although the owners of the BMW, Mercedes, Toyota and Honda teams have made their feelings clear on the matter the teams themselves have not said anything.

According to The Times (whose reportage on the matter we should of course be wary of), “even Ecclestone has realised that the harm being done by Mosley to the image of Formula One, and the effect that it is having on sponsors, meant that something had to be done.”

Disagreement at Ferrari?

Fearrari’s former team principal Jean Todt, who has been widely tipped to succeed Mosley, unsurprisingly voiced support for him:

If you ask me if I’m happy with the actions of the president of the FIA since he’s been in office, I think he does a very good job. Therefore I hope he will have the opportunity to carry on his work for several more years.

President Luca di Montezemolo was more cautious:

I don’t like talking about other people’s personal issues. I prefer not to comment either in my name or Ferrari’s, since there are already too many censors and judges at large.

And according to Nigel Roebuck the new Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali would like to see Mosley go.

Compare and contrast

Another sex scandal has broken in the News of the World since then and the person at the centre of it could not have handled it more differently than Mosley.

Lord Laidlaw apologised and made a ??1m donation to a relevant charity. Craig explains the rest in this excellent post.

The lighter side

It must be hard being a monthly print magazine in the days of 24/7 internet coverage. The latest issue of F1 Racing came out quite a while after the scandal had broken so editor Hans Seeberg decided to restrict coverage of it to just his editorial:

We think you might be a bit border of orgies too, so we’ve decided to give it all a miss and concentrate on what really matters.

A noble sentiment and I certainly empathise with their distaste for the whole affair. But would these principles have reigned if they’d had a new scoop on the story? I doubt it.

Nelson Piquet Snr, meanwhile, made light of it all:

I am very upset with him. Very upset, because he didn’t invite anyone to his party!

Is there no-one in Formula 1 who has ever had a sex party?

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57 comments on Inevitable Max Mosley post #11

  1. Murcielago – if it wasn’t for the fact that I am on Keith’s blog & therefore need to be polite I’d tell you what I really thought.

    As it is, perhaps you should learn a bit of history before you make inane and stupid comments like the one you just did. And maybe, just maybe, you would not be so flippant if you had attended 57 – yes that’s right, 57 – funerals of friends and colleagues killed in motor races over 14 years.

    I dunno about you, but I had a co-worker killed in a car accident 7 years ago. A great guy, 25 years old and had his whole life to look forward to. We were not especially close, but it still pains me to this day that he is no longer with us. So multiply that by a hundredfold and you may have some inkling as to the motivation that drove Sir Jackie to improve safety.

    Life is dangerous, yes. But why should someone be expected to gamble with their life every weekend? Would you take that risk? Easy to talk from the anonymity of a computer screen. Not so easy to get out there and do it yourself, is it.

    And Sir Jackie did – for fourteen years. So a little more respect, hmmm Murcielago?

  2. Green Flag, my comparing Max to Hitler and Mussolini was admittedly extreme (or did you not read that part?) and done for effect. If the pervert Mosley can call Sir Jackie a certifiable half-wit in the guise of his public office we can certainly take similar liberties in our efforts to rid ourselves of Max.

    Murcielago, pink Peril gave you the dignified version of my response to your stupid ass-essment of Stewart. Hopefully there’ll be someone to mourn your demise if your driving is as erratic as your thinking.

  3. Murci me, talk about a half-wit. Stewart was not only a brilliant driver, one of the smoothest ever, but he had the balls to match his brains. If I’m not mistaken, he held the most race wins (27) until Alain Prost came along, not to mention 3 world championships.Half wit indeed.

    Would you call Lauda a coward for retiring from the Japanese GP in the puring rain because he didn’t have eyelids that worked properly after being burned?

    I’m thinking your granny needs to give your inner child a spanking……..

  4. Green Flag said on 30th April 2008, 5:34

    Pink Peril – in answering Murcielago you sort of made my point – Stewart saw 57 drivers buried in 14 years, but in the past 14 years not a single F1 driver has died. That’s an amazing improvement, and let’s pray it continues. But it’s mainly due to the FIA’s safety focus, and like it or not, mostly on Mosley’s watch. Sure, many others played their parts in this achievement, but the driving force was, and is, Mosley. I find it unbelievable that because someone suddenly screws up his previous accomplishments are immediately null and void. Imagine, if you will, that Jackie Stewart or Ron Dennis are discovered to have done something as scandalous as Max’s contretemps – anything’s possible – would you turn on them and belittle their records? I doubt it.

  5. murcielago said on 30th April 2008, 5:53

    Gee, I had not realized that I’d stumbled into the Jackie Stewart kiss-ass fan club. No one’s doubting his driving ability, in his time he was the best. But leaving the sport the way he did lacked class, and after he retired he should have kept his mouth tightly closed because his thinking ability in no way matched his driving skills. Hence Max’s rather apt comment.

  6. If Ron Dennis was proven incontrovertibly (on film) doing the same as Max, he too should go. In fact, if Max can prove that it was Ron who had Max followed (http://www.f1complete.com/content/view/8518/900/) and paid for the filming, he still should go along with Max.

  7. Murcie, you don’t seem to have a grasp of the definition of class. Interestingly, Max was born into "high society", and is clearly a degenerate, and Jackie started off as a mechanic, which is understood to be the foundation of Max’s hatred for Ron. It’s a class thing, you see.

  8. GeorgeK, I seriously doubt, and would be shocked to find out, that Dennis was behind the surreptitious filming of Mosley’s shenanigans. It’s just not his style. He seems to have integrity, a simple definition of which is "walk your talk." Max, on the other hand talks about the good of the sport and a higher moral ground, yet acts in his own personal and professional interests only.

    More likely, Rupert Murdoch, who is being sued by Max, decided to use one of his tabloids to expose a lifestyle that he, and probably many others already knew about. Max repeatedly, and increasingly (the diatribe against Stewart is just a single example) takes gutter shots at respected individuals who dare to speak out against him. Ever wonder why Schumi never gets any stick? Live by the sword…..

  9. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 30th April 2008, 9:22

    Murcielago, I think the reason why so many peple have reacted against your comment about Stewart is because it’s a cheap shot and you don’t seem to know the facts either.

    Stewart had decided to retire at the end of 1973 anyway, and the horrible crash that killed Cevert (and make no mistake of the gruesomeness and horror of these deaths you are being so flippant about) simply convinced him there was no merit in taking one last roll of the dice. (If anyone wants to learn more about Stewart they should check out his excellent autobiography, “Winning is not Enough”).

    I don’t think that racing in 99 Grands Prix in the most dangerous period the sport has ever seen, winning 27 of them and three championships, and while doing so leasing a campaign that by today must have saved hundreds of lives, can be described as cowardly.

    Taking a cheap shot at someone who did that from the comforting anonymity of the internet, however, most certainly is cowardly.

    I have had the pleasure of meeting Stewart in the past and he is a decent, intelligent man most undeserving of such an attack – by you or Max Mosley.

  10. Rabi said on 30th April 2008, 12:37

    I’m going to put a quote from Wikipedia: "As a result of these deaths and other serious accidents in the mid-1990s, Mosley brought in wide ranging changes to Formula One designed to make it a safer sport"

    And now to make my point. Max walked into the FIA in 1993 and immediately made rule changes for the upcoming 1994 season. Already the writing was on wall that something would turn ugle with the high number of crashes that took place in both pre-season testing and the races before Imola. Max only pulled his finger out of his arse once there was a casualty which unfortunately happened to be both Ratzenburger and Senna. Bear in mind that the last death in F1 was in 1982.

    So Max over reacted to his own cock-up and effectively spun the whole situation to make it look like he was championing driver safety when in reality he created the opportunity of those deaths in the first place.

  11. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 30th April 2008, 12:40

    Rabi, Mosley became president in 1991: Max Mosley biography.

  12. Fireblade said on 30th April 2008, 22:00

    -The withdrawal of the invitation of the Israeli ministry is a serious source of laughter…who cares what a country thinks which has less motor sport activities than Nepal?The minister tried helplessly to show that he did the withdrawal first,before Max will do it!Neglible discussion point!
    -Keith:Why did you not mention the other teams who refused  to take sides like Ferrari,Williams and Torro Rosso?
    -Why didn’t u point out the hard,deserved and merciless lecture your beloved Mr. Ron Dennis got from Torro Rosso’s Franz Tost when he talked about ethics and decency at the Spanish Grand Prix 2008?You would have learned alot from it!
    -Please be informed that the car from which Mad Max was filmed entering the house in Chelsea…was identified and you will be very surprised to what the investigations of Quest have led…even if you will not like the outcome of it!

  13. Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 30th April 2008, 22:06

    I hadn’t read any source identifying Williams and Toro Rosso as the other teams that had reservations. In fact I’d heard a rumour that Williams were one of the teams pushing hardest for the teams to take a stance against Mosley.

    If you would like to post some links to this other information you’re quoting then we can perhaps discuss it.

  14. Franz Tost was lecturing Ron Dennis on ethics? People who mess about their drivers the way Franz messed about Speed and Liuzzi (to say nothing of deliberately running customer cars when, unlike Super Aguri, they could use the facilities they’ve already got to build an F1 car of their own) are not really in a position to lecture anyone on ethics…

  15. I believe that Firepants is referring to the meeting  between most of the teams and Bernie in the motorhome in Spain where a letter asking for Max to step down was proposed.

    Williams, it can be assumed was hesitant to sign on because of the rumours of Todt taking Max’s job, and they didn’t want to force that hand, and of course Torro Rosso will vote any way Ferrari tells them. With the Red team always on Max’s Christmas card list, this one is a no-brainer. So it cannot be assumed that Williams support Max, in fact, they vehemently and litigiously opposed his customer car solution.

    That leaves, Ferrari on their own, as always. First to collect the cheque when Bernie pulled out his pen and Max said "Boo."

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