Jean Todt, Marco Tronchetti Provera, Istanbul, 2011

Jean Todt’s Approval Rating 2011: Part 2

Debates and pollsPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Jean Todt, Marco Tronchetti Provera, Istanbul, 2011
Jean Todt, Marco Tronchetti Provera, Istanbul, 2011

With Bahrain, a 21-race calendar, rules changes and more on the agenda, it’s been a busy three months for Jean Todt.

Are you happy with how F1 is being run by the FIA president?

F1 Fanatic looks at how the president of the sport?s governing body, Jean Todt, is managing the championship. Join in by casting your vote below.

FIA developments since the last approval rating


Much has already been written on the vexed subject of Bahrain, so here’s a brief recap plus links to more below.

At the time of the last Approval Rating the Bahrainis had been given three months to decide if their race could take place. After that the FIA granted them another month to make their mind up.

An FIA delegation was sent to Bahrain and sent back a favourable report. The World Motor Sport Council unanimously agreed to restore the race to the calendar, in the place of the Indian Grand Prix, which was moved to a new date two weeks after the season was originally supposed to end.

The teams objected and Bernie Ecclestone (who had sat in the WMSC meeting) proposed a new calendar reverting back to the original schedule. The Bahrainis also dropped efforts to reinstate the race. The WMSC held a fax vote and unanimously agreed to accept the change, dropping Bahrain and restoring India to its original date.

2013 rules

The WMSC agreed that a fax vote could be held before the end of this month on whether to postpone the new 2013 technical regulations.

These include a move to 1.6-litre four-cylinder turbocharged engines (announced in December). The rules on vodywork and wings will also be revised but will not include a rumoured shift towards ‘ground effect’-style aerodynamics.

2012 F1 calendar

A 21-race F1 calendar for 2012 was ratified by the WMSC.

However Todt said afterwards that only 20 races will take place.

Exhaust-blown diffusers

Restrictions on the use of so-called ‘hot-blown diffusers’ will come into force at the British Grand Prix. Teams will be restricted in how they can use the exhaust gasses to feed the diffuser when the car is not accelerating.

Rules changes for 2012 will further restrict the design of exhaust-blown diffusers.

Anti-doping drive

The drivers have been given instructions on how to ensure they comply with rules banning drug taking.

World Endurance Championship

Unfortunately it was not possible to cover the details of the FIA’s new World Endurance Championship when it was announced, but it will likely be of interest to many F1 fans.

The FIA is in effect resurrecting the championship which collapsed in the early nineties. The series will be based on this year’s Intercontinental Le Mans Cup and include the Le Mans 24 Hours as a round.

It will be promoted by the Automobile Club de l?Ouest.

Ecclestone criticism

Ecclestone had some sharp words for Todt shortly after the last Approval Rating: “He has been travelling around the world doing what Max didn?t do too much ?ǣ kissing the babies and shaking the hands.

“It is probably good for the FIA but we don?t need it in Formula 1.”

Jean Todt’s Approval Rating

As an F1 fan, do you approve or disapprove of the way Jean Todt is handling his job as FIA President?

  • Approve (13%)
  • Disapprove (79%)
  • No opinion (9%)

Total Voters: 255

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Tell us how you voted and explain why in the comments.

Jean Todt?s Approval Ratings

Jan 2010 Feb 2010 Mar 2010 Apr 2010 May 2010 Jun 2010 Jul 2010 Aug 2010 Sep 2010 Oct 2010 Nov 2010 Dec 2010 Jan 2011 Feb 2011 Mar 2011
Approve 54.73 56.68 52.84 62.68 78.42 52.95 53.76 59.89 44.7 60.44 70.75 52.84 46.93
Disapprove 15.94 13.99 24.45 14.11 7.89 23.18 23.98 17.47 43.04 23.58 17.72 34.06 37.28
No opinion 29.33 29.32 22.71 23.21 13.69 23.88 22.26 22.64 12.26 15.98 11.53 13.1 15.79
Date Approve Disapprove No opinion
January-March 2011 47% 37% 16%
December 2010 53% 34% 13%
November 2010 71% 18% 11%
October 2010 60% 24% 16%
September 2010 44% 43% 12%
August 2010 60% 17% 23%
July 2010 54% 24% 22%
June 2010 53% 23% 24%
May 2010 78% 8% 14%
April 2010 63% 14% 23%
March 2010 53% 24% 23%
February 2010 57% 14% 29%
January 2010 55% 16% 29%

The Jean Todt Approval Rating was a monthly feature in 2010. It is being run quarterly during 2011.

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79 comments on “Jean Todt’s Approval Rating 2011: Part 2”

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  1. HounslowBusGarage
    20th June 2011, 13:28

    The 2012 provisional calendar with its “Spot the race that won’t go ahead” feature was daft.
    Going floppy on the 2013 rules was terminally unimpressive.
    But failing to check your own rule book before making an announcement AND getting it pointed out by your predecessor is just amateur.
    And this sport, more than many others, needs ap professional at the head.

    1. Even worse: maybe they didn’t fail to check their rules and that is why all of them decided unanimously, save in the knowledge that it couldn’t happen anyway.

      I wouldn’t be surprised, too much infighting and politics in preparation for the new Concorde agreement discussion and the like.

  2. Wholehearted disapproval. Bahrain felt like an indecisive child in a candy store and as a dissatisfied American any hint of our domestic boring spec series like NASCAR or Indy is appalling. F1 is a nice escape from what this country has to offer and I hope it stays that way. The more innovation the better.

  3. Ned Flanders
    20th June 2011, 13:47

    Keith, instead of approve/ disapprove/ no opinion, don’t you think a strongly approve/ moderately approve/ ambivalent/ moderately disapprove/ strongly disapprove system would work better.

    There’s often a fine line between liking or disliking something, but the vote doesn’t really reflect that. You have to either vote one way or the other- unless you count ‘no opinion’ as a middle ground, but I don’t, I interpret that option literally.

    For the record, I voted disapprove, for obvious reasons

    1. Admittedly, I know there’s no chance the system will change now because it’ll mess up the stats gathered over the last few months, so my previous comment was basically just a way to air my grievances!

  4. Disapprove. So far this season, the FIA led by Todt has never made me feel like ‘our’ sport is in good hands.

  5. disapprove – again.

    Bahrain, of course made F1 look very bad. How on earthe he chose to trust one of his own more than all major news agencies is … beyond me.

    Also, he just doesn’t communicate enough. And he could’ve been smarter in that. Like when the engine rules were announced, give interviews and tell every single journalist how glad you are that Ferrari (as member of the WMSC) supports the new engines and that this is an important milestone for F1. Nd remind everybody how we used to have these very same engines in the past. And how good they sounded back then.

    But no, he kept silent and now he is caught again with his pants down and FIA decisions look like a mockery again.

    I know Mosley sometimes overcommunicated (although that one time in the basement wasn’t his intention), but Todt just never is there. Leave, Jean.

    1. Oh, btw I could go on with evey measure to make mincemeat of it, but it’s just all bad, except for the endurance championship.

  6. I really like the Endurance Championship, I hear it will include Le Mans. But apart from that it’s been a lot of dithering and indecisiveness that only makes it confusing for the fans and puts the whole sport in a very bad light

  7. I always used to like jean todt as he was a capable figure in F1…someone who had so much promise to take over from Mr Whippy.

    But I have to say that I have been majorly dissapointed with Todt’s reign in the FIA as president. All hes done is to duck out & bullet dodge certain issues – Some of his proposals have been half-cot ideas – it also seems like hes a bit of a ditherer who hopes that someone else will make the decisions. His engine proposals are rubbish; his management of the stewards is as ever even more inconsistant. His proposal to ban Lewis for 6 races wouldve been suicidal for the sport and championship.

    Especially with the Hamilton issue, todt & the FIA have shown major hypocrisy & inadequecy – They seem to take such a high moral stance against Lewis but their farcicle handling of the bahrain debacle was quite disgusting and showed the true greed and corruptive minds of those in the FIA who cherry-pick when to play the moral high ground.

    Mosely may have been a very shady character (they all usually are at that level) – and his personal vandetta against Ron and mclaren was very self damaging…but at least when it came to the sport and the role of Presidency..he did do alot of good.

    Todt has been a real let down Im sorry to say. The biggest issue for the FIA is that they need to get someone in who has a lengthy motorsport experience but at the same time someone who has no interest or ties with any of the current participants in F1.

    However with F1 becoming so much of a corporate business, finding anyone experienced enough who doesnt have ties with any companies whic have an f1 interest will be very difficult.

    On another note – I think someone like Paul Stoddard would be a perfect guy for FIA presidency

    1. The FIA is about more than F1. Why should you single out no ties with F1, without also mentioning WRC etc?

  8. I think the Bahrain thing and the fact Todt looks bad is probably down to Bernie being a shrewd operator. I’m not happy about the repealing of what I thought were good rules for 2013 though. I had my friends and family excited about the regs too, and now I have to tell them they might not happen. Sigh.

    1. Yeah, I can fully understand what the Renault official told us the other day. If this yes/no/unsure goes on, his board will stuff the program for being utterly unimpressed.

  9. Disapprove, of course!
    Although I don’t understand the fuss around blown diffusers. Last season we witnessed open disregard to FIA Sporting regulations by FIA itself. ‘Hope you all remember Team orders issue. It was a benchmark to all inconsistencies of FIA policy in the future.
    On the other hand, FIA as organization, has to be directed with clear objectives in mind. Former President signed documents that should be observed in pursuing these goals (
    Obviously, this is not happening. We have hybrid cars with limited amount of recovered energy… It simply doesn’t comply with the spirit of these documents.
    Consequently, and not only because of it, FIA as organization puts itself on the long list of organizations guided by financial interest of people in position to manipulate FIA and the public in general.
    Mr. Mosley was good at it but Mr. Todt is doing even better. To our regret…

  10. I voted Disapprove.

    Because of the chaos around the Bahrain decision and the changes to the 2013 regulations. I would have liked to see ground effect back and would like to see more powerful engines ( at least 1000 BHP). I like the World Endurance Championship, but that is just the Intercontinental Le Mans Cup with a different name. It’s nice to see that the ACO and FIA get along again. But the things that are wrong balance out the things that are right. So definitely, disapprove.

  11. Disapprove!
    Bahrain decision making was a fiasco.
    And regarding the 2013 engine change, in the present day financial climate, now is not the time to spend large sums developing a new engine no matter what its spec.

  12. Believe it or not, I actually now think Max Mosely was a better president than Jean Todt. Call me crazy, but MM wasn’t afraid to say what he needed to say, sometimes his views were wrong (in my opinion) and I see JT not actually doing much other than send people (not necessarily the right ones also) out to places to do his dirty work for him.

    MM was able to work a lot better with Bernie than JT, which is a major thing required if you are going to run Formula 1, GP2, GP3, GP2 Asia, and whatever series he runs/co-runs. Not to mention the safety restrictions put in place after the events of Imola 1994, and going to Ratzenberger’s funeral too. He done a lot of good during his time in Formula 1, and was a great successor to Balestre.

    I see that Jean Todt has done very little for Formula 1, or any other racing series run by the FIA for that fact. I thought the way he handled the ’13th team’ situation was silly. To decide that there will be a team, see loads of applicants arrive, and then tell them all that there will not be a 13th slot on the grid was quite pathetic. All I can see that he has done is that he approved the plans for the Circuit of the Americas, and the construction of the Buddh Circuit. Handling of Korea was also poor. This whole Bahrain farce just adds to the worries…

    My main concern however, is the regulations for 2013. 2012 will end in 17/18 months or so, and so far we have no idea what Formula 1 will look like. The teams appear just as clueless as we are, and many companies that produce things like engines, gearboxes, brakes and so forth at this rate, are going to have very little development time before the start of the 2013 season when testing gets underway in January.

    Don’t get me wrong, it was the right time for Mosely to retire, I just think that Jean Todt wasn’t the best guy for the job. I didn’t from the start and my opinion remains unchanged now…

  13. I’m unhappy. On top of the dreadful flip-flopping and indecisiveness over Bahrain which should have been the most easy decision in the world, that shows he’s not in touch with the strife over there, I also dislike the fact he said he considered banning Hamilton over some (imo) stupid but blatantly off the cuff remarks which didn’t reflect his actual opinion.

    1. Oh and I disapprove of his 2013 rule changes. It’s lunacy.

  14. maxthecat12
    20th June 2011, 16:15

    The rule changes in regard to engines won’t happy and Todt knows they won’t. I think he’s been clever here, trying to push changes that go against Ferrari’s heart and soul, who most accuse Todt of being in bed with and bound to favour knowing full well they won’t happen and at the same time losing his ‘Ferrari puppet’ tag he’s had since taking the job.

    For all the rule changes proposed, anyone who thinks they’ll happen doesn’t know F1, it will the teams who decide the direction F1 takes, it always is and always will be. Without the teams there is no F1 and the FIA have nothing. Lets be honest, if the teams broke away from the FIA but still raced the F1 Championship without the FIA at the beginning of it, will anyone really care?

  15. I voted against,but then I would be hard to please as I see the FIA as nothing but another parasite riding on the back of F1 sucking the lifeblood of innovation out of the sport. Why do we need so many middlemen, why can’t the constructors and the drivers sort out the rules and appoint a professional agent to negotiate contracts and promote the sport for no more than a 10% fee.

  16. I voted down (I think) for the first time, mainly for the mess with Bahrain and 2013 engines (time’s ticking). I never thought I’d miss Mosley’s constant meddling, but Todt doesn’t seem to be doing anything at all, no decisions are being made.

    I’d forgotten about the return of WSC actually, I assume it it’ll remain the same as LMS currently, just with FIA approval?

  17. Unfortunately I had to tick ‘no’ on this occasion. Simply down to the Bahrain issue. I didn’t really care about the political/humanitarian side of things but make a decision and stick to it. The level of cohesion between the FIA, FOTA and FOM was poor at best, he should have brought them altogether and made them speak with one voice. I appreciate that’s a hard job, but it could have earned him a ‘yes’ from me so I think that particular aspect is very important.

  18. I disapprove. What he did about Bahrain is too much of a good reason to disapprove him

  19. Disapprove. Not even close but Bahrain would have overruled any success elsewhere. Of which there was not much anyway. He’s even failing to help his former team win…

  20. It’s not all bad, Things like the anti-doping drive are perfectly choson ideas.

    However Bahrain forces me to vote disprove.

    Todt needs to step back, take a big breath, and get out of the FIA zone he is in. Think about what is right. Not politics.

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