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So what's next

NEWS STORY
25/06/2009

The day after, one can almost imagine certain people in F1 going about their business whistling 'ding dong the witch is dead', such will be the sense of relief, in most quarters, that Max Mosley has said he will not be standing again.

However, before we get carried away, there are a number of issues that need to be considered.

Firstly, after the long drawn out fight, other than the imminent departure of the FIA President, will anything really change? While Ferrari is happy with yesterday's outcome, we will have to wait to see if the remainder of the FOTA teams share their enthusiasm.

Clearly, Mosley was on the back foot, but he went down fighting and some might even claim the FIA/FOTA ended in a draw, after all, budgets will be significantly reduced and a number of new teams will line up on the grid next season with Cosworths, but let's not forget, the Englishman had never previously given a cast iron assurance that he would stand for re-election in October. Sure, he'd threatened it, but we are well used to seeing him make threats only to grudgingly withdraw them, having secured the result he'd really wanted in the first place.

Then there is the question of Mosley's replacement as President of the FIA. Now while this is an internal matter, FOTA, Bernie Ecclestone and CVC must ensure that the outgoing President has no say in the appointment of his replacement, otherwise we could well find Mr Mosley governing by proxy.

Mosley is known to favour Deputy President, Nick Craw, while others believe former Ferrari boss Jean Todt could be in a shoe-in. The fact is that if F1 is to learn from the lessons of the past, the ties to Mosley must be severed completely. That means personal favourites such as Craw and those who got on well with the Englishman, such as Todt. There are many who believe the reason the Frenchman was dropped by Ferrari, despite all that he had helped it achieve, was because of the fact that he was - and remains - Mosley's man.

Other than the Presidency, attention must be paid to the team Mosley assembled at the FIA, including Alan Donnelly and Director of Communications, Richard Woods.

In recent weeks, more and more journalists have found the balls to admit publicly what they really think of Mosley's regime. Rest assured, if there is a clean sweep at the FIA, and journos are not quite so terrified of losing their passes - their livelihoods - for daring to write/utter a word perceived as critical of the FIA, a lot more will be revealed.

All one has to remember is the way the FIA went after the Sunday Times when Martin Brundle likened the sport's governing body's pursuit of McLaren to a witch hunt. While the matter was eventually resolved, let's not forget also reports that the FIA allegedly attempted to block Brundle's move to the BBC.

Finally, should anyone need convincing about just how spiteful and wicked the FIA could be with Mosley at the helm, let's not forget the way in which Ron Dennis was driven from the sport. One of the darkest episodes in recent F1 history.

If we are to prevent more teams following Honda out of F1, spending must be cut, however, one of the most galling things about this recent row is that it was Mosley who presided over the sport while spending went through the roof and into the stratosphere in the first place.

It was in the wake of Ayrton Senna's death in 1994, a year after Mosley took over as FIA President, that F1 changed. It was from that point that the sport really took off as a global business making many of those involved wealthy beyond their wildest dreams.

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