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FOTA teams must stand their ground

NEWS STORY
09/06/2009

As we are all painfully aware, courtesy of the News of the World, when it comes to certain aspects of his private life, Max Mosley is somewhat submissive. However, when it comes to the running of Formula One it is the FIA President who brandishes the whip.

Just days before the FIA announces the entry list for 2010, an event which could rip the sport asunder, the Englishman has begun his final assault.

However, while he intends to let all involved know that he still rules the sport with a rod of iron, he is well aware that he needs to look over his shoulder lest Bernie Ecclestone, or, more importantly, CVC, should pull the carpet from under him.

In a late bid to keep the FOTA teams in the sport, Mosley is understood to have written to them urging them to amend their entries so that they are unconditional. Should they agree to this by close of business today (Tuesday) there is every likelihood that their names will be on the entry list published on Friday. But no guarantees.

With regards those teams, such as Lola, USGPE, Prodrive, Lotus, et al, who have submitted entries based on the 40 million budget cap, negotiations would take place following Friday's announcement in order that the budget, indeed, the rules for 2010, might be re-drawn. All this, just seven months before the 2010 cars should be taking to the track for their first tests.

However, at the same time, it is understood the FIA is looking at the legal ramifications after the five manufacturer teams in FOTA - Ferrari, Mercedes, Toyota, Renault and BMW - signed up to a $50m bond aimed at preventing the teams' alliance breaking apart should other members follow Williams and Force India's example and break ranks.

The FIA believes the agreement could be illegal under UK law, for it could be seen as the manufacturers operating a cartel, which is an offence under the 2002 Enterprises Act, under the terms of which penalties include "imprisonment for a term not exceeding five years or to a fine, or to both."

So there you have it. Sign up or not only could you find yourself out of F1, you could even find yourself in jail.

This has gone on for far too long, Max Mosley has gone on for far too long.

Thankfully, despite the ever present threat of having their passes withdrawn their publications blacklisted, more and more journalists are finally sticking their heads up above the parapets realising that the sport is in mortal danger because of the power lust of one man. In particular, Full credit to Jeff Pappone and Richard Williams. Now lets see some more journos speak out and say what they really think, what they know their readers really think.

It would be so easy to list the many reasons why Max Mosley should stand down, his original quest to encourage the manufacturers into the sport and drive out the small teams, the very policy that pushed F1 costs through the roof, the KERS fiasco, his 'you're with us or against us' policy in terms of teams, personnel and media and his apparent determination to prove to all that he, not the teams, not CVC, not Bernie Ecclestone, is the boss, no matter the damage done.

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