Max Mosley: five more years? (Poll)

Posted on | Author Keith Collantine

Max Mosley at the 2007 Monaco Grand Prix
Max Mosley at the 2007 Monaco Grand Prix

Max Mosley is planning to run for election as president of the FIA once again this year.

Should Max Mosley remain FIA president for five more years?

  • Yes (6%)
  • No (90%)
  • No opinion (4%)

Total Voters: 955

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Max Mosley was elected president of the FIA in 1991, ousting Frenchman Jean-Marie Balestre who had held the post since 1978, and after 13 years in the job his presidency was widely considered a bit long in the tooth.

But now Mosley has been heading up the FIA for 18 years and, if he completes another five-year term, by 2014 he?ll have spent 23 years in the job – a full decade longer than Balestre.

Has he been in the role too long? Has he done a good job? Would five more years of Mosley be good for Formula 1?

Max Mosley as FIA president, 1991 – ?

He has seldom been far away from controversy during his 18 years heading up the FIA. From the infamous memo at the 1993 Canadian Grand Prix declaring that all the cars were illegal, to the rush the introduce new safety measures in the wake of Ayrton Senna?s death the following year, to the Indianapolis fiasco in 2005, ??Spygate?? in 2007, and ??Spankgate?? last year, the FIA president has often made bigger headlines than the racing has.

Alongside the controversies Mosley has been at the centre of fierce debate over F1?s technical rules. He has argued that F1 must serve as a test bed for green technologies, and that other innovations should be strictly regulated to prevent costs spiralling out of control. But this could risk destroying the essence of Formula 1 and the core of its appeal.

He has made U-turns on some of the most controversial changes he introduced to F1 earlier in his tenure – such as re-introducing refuelling and banning slick tyres. I’m thrilled to see slicks returning this year and refuelling banned in 2010, but these changes should never have been made in the first place. And he certainly didn’t have the same mania for green technologies in 1999 when the FIA prevented McLaren from using an early KERS on their cars.

If he does stand for election again, his victory is surely a guarantee, as was made clear last year when he easily survived a confidence vote of the FIA senate following the sadomasochism scandal.

During the scandal he appealed to many people who considered voting against him by saying he would step down in 2009. It’s hardly surprising to see him go back on his word, especially as he did exactly the same when he first promised to step down in 2004.

Should he stand again? Who would make a better president of the FIA? Would we miss him if he left? Have your say in the comments.

Read more about Max Mosley: Max Mosley biography

Image (C) Red Bull / GEPA

41 comments on “Max Mosley: five more years? (Poll)”

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  1. The fundamental problem is not who is qualified to do the job but what the job should be. The President of the FIA should have no involvement whatever with sport. The FIA has two sections; sport and touring. The touring side deals with road safety including things like the NCAP testing of road cars.

    Sport should be run by FISA but Max disbanded that after he had used the presidency of that organisation to mount his campaign for the FIA presidency. FISA must be re-instated to run all sport.

    For me F1 should run independenty with its own board and CEO. It is too different from other FIA/FISA sports. The FIA/FISA should be promoting grass roots sport and running lower level championships.

    The fact that Max spends so much time interfering in F1 simply shows how much he is neglecting his other duties.

    For me the war between Bernie and Max is a construct that allowed Bernie to slag Max off in the papers after his little indiscretion. It suits the two of them to have the world believe they are at loggerheads but I am certain Bernie is still working Max by remote control. He has paid plenty for the privelege and while I have no difficulty in believing that Max would stab him in the back now that Bernie has divvied up is aware that Bernie knows where the bodies are buried to use the Nigel Stepney phrase.

    I am sure Arthur954 and anyone else who is new to the sport will be interested in reading the document at the url below. The important part is paragraph 11 which details an alleged payment from Bernie to Max which co-incided with Max’s sudden need to move to Monaco. The writer Tom Rubython is not known for being reliable but the story was carried by more respected sources at the time.

    Is there still anyone who thinks this liar should be president?

  2. I think my comment has been moderated. I hope it has because I really don’t want to type it all again even if I could remember it.

  3. Max was never a person who promoted safety, he only made those changes to cover himself after his technical rule changes made the cars dangerous in the first place. When Rubens flipped the car and skirted along the concrete wall that should have set the alarm bells ringing but it didn’t.

  4. HRH Mosley should get five more years; preferably in solitary confinement in an institution without corporal punishment or outlets to the media.

    My HRH usage is in recognition of the royal status he has achieved, we will only rid ourselves of his insidious presence by armed insurrection or his untimely passing. That, preferably a heart attack during one of his spanking sessions. Yes, I REALLY despise that man!

  5. Romain from Grenoble
    7th February 2009, 17:36

    I feel that Mosley should run for election again (and I voted yes even though the question is slightly different). For many years I didn’t have any specific opinion about him, but recently I came to the conclusion that I globally agree with him.
    Specifically : he seems to have done a good job on safety. It looks like he reacted after the deaths, if we look only at the 94 accidents, but he did some useful work on the road car side.
    As regards technical changes in F1 (the most important function of the FIA presidency :) ), we can all say with insight that the 98 changes were probably the wrong choice. But predicting aerodynamics was not perfect at the time. I wonder who made those technical changes in 98? Was it a team-FIA association like todays OWG ?
    Anyway, my point is that I globally agree with Mosley’s running of F1 on the technology side, despite the grooved-tyres and aero 98 changes.The 2009 new rules look very interesting.
    Finally, I rather appreciate his political cunning. His (public) answer to the GPDA “show me your earnings” was brilliant.

    1. I cannot agree with you on the safety front, everything he did for safety was as a result of the accidents of 1994, which was too late. Every regulation change he bring in is a reaction to a massive ground swell of opinion from the f1 public. For example, if he had really been on top of the need to improve over taking in f1 then why are we having to turn the cars inside out – Answer, he did nothing worth while during that time.

      On the cost front, he is leading f1 to the brink – He is 12 months / 18 Months too late.

  6. Innar from Estonia
    7th February 2009, 19:07

    So long in one position makes the lazy and comfortable. Then come to any strange ideas – medals, etc.
    I voted – no.

  7. Roman,

    There was no overtaking working group in 1998 and the technical regs came from the FIA.

    The fundamental theory behind them was that if the cars depended more on aero grip than mechanical grip we would get more overtaking. Everyone and I mean everyone outside the FIA panned the theory because it was insane.

    Anyone with more than an absolutely basic grasp on the technology of racing cars knows that the more areo we have had the less overtaking there has been so placing the emphasis on aero over mechanical grip was doomed to failure.

    You have to have much more emphasis on mechanical rather than aero grip. The new regs go some way to redressing that imbalance but the rear slicks are under-specced so the drivers won’t ba able to lean on them as they should and the cars will have to be made nose heavy to maximise tyre performance.

    The only way to get more overtaking is to massively cut downforce. The current regs were supposed to cut downforce by 50% for 2009 which was not enough. Tony Purnell who is supposed to be the technical brains behind Max stated three weeks ago that the team already have 80% of last year’s downforce which tells you how good a job the OWG did.

    Every time the FIA has tried to cut back on car performance they have under-estimated how much performance the teams will gain back. If you or I had been in that situation on a regular basis we would factor into our calculations that the teams will recover more than we think they will so if I wanted 2009 cars to have 50% of the downforce of 2008 cars the regs would have been writtin to give them 30% knowing that the teams would find the rest. Unfortunately the FIA ain’t that smart.

    In 2009 we will have very little more overtaking than in 2008 even allowing for obscenities like push to pass and insanities like adjustable wings. Despite 30 years of trying we still son’t have sensible technical regs.

  8. Romain from Grenoble
    8th February 2009, 16:41

    Ok. Thanks for the info Steven. I was not following the technical details in 97/98, but I do remember Jacque Villeneuve complaining about the grooved tyres.

    As for Max Mosley: I understand that most of you think he is not suited for the job. Then who could replace him?

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