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Todt: FIA does not wield enough power

NEWS STORY
23/06/2016

FIA president Jean Todt is concerned that F1's governing body does not have sufficient power.

At a time former FIA president Max Mosley was warning that the engine manufacturers, particularly Mercedes and Ferrari, now govern the sport, the FIA was facing embarrassment after its new qualifying format had to be abandoned after just a couple of races.

And as the teams demand not only a bigger slice of the sport's revenue, but the right to decide the regulations, it's almost as if the FIA has lost control and serves merely to rubber stamp what others want.

Things came to a head when the Grand Prix Drivers' Association, effectively the F1 drivers' union, wrote an open letter to the sport's powers-that-be, expressing fears over the way it was being governed and the direction in which it is heading, an embarrassing admission in terms of the FIA's leadership.

Speaking at the FIA's Sport Conference in Turin, Todt admitted that the organisation should have "more autonomy to make the final decision" on F1's rules and regulations.

"The governing body has not enough power, or influence to have the final say on the rules," said the Frenchman. "If you want to have the participation of teams, of manufacturers, they must support what you are doing.

"Very often manufacturers are involved because they feel it is a strong marketing tool, a strong laboratory for them. So it is essential you listen to them, it is a way of leadership. For me I like to hear what people think, not only manufacturers but fans and journalists."

Currently, the suggestions are made by the Strategy Group and the F1 Commission, both of which have major input from the teams and manufacturers along with Bernie Ecclestone, the Commercial Rights Holder.

"At the end of the day we should have much more autonomy to make the final decisions," said Todt. "But after having listened to the others. It is important you have bodies that are participating to influence but at the end of the day it is the governing body that is making the final decision.

Of course, this would require; "the very strong support of the promoter," he admitted, "because the promoter has the responsibility to sell the show. It would be unfair to say we are going to dictate that and you must sell the show."

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READERS COMMENTS

 

1. Posted by gturner38, 27/06/2016 4:28

"I have no idea why the FIA ever gave up the power to actually write the rules independent of the teams. Of course they should ask for opinions from the teams, drivers, and promoters, but at the end of the day, the only way the regs are going to have any direction is to have an independent body write them. Todt is right that they need support from Bernie to sell the series rather than Bernie engaging in power struggle through the media, but tighter control over the rules making would force Bernie into line as he would be less likely to fight against changes if he knew he couldn't gain control."

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2. Posted by Editor, 24/06/2016 10:06

"@ Greybeard

Call it brainfade... or old age... or a typo"

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3. Posted by Greybeard, 24/06/2016 9:23

"Do you mean "wield"?"

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4. Posted by TokyoAussie, 24/06/2016 4:35

"I agree that the FIA should have more control, and the FOM (Bernie) and the teams less control, in principle. However, the FIA in its current guise (Todt) have a woeful record of controlling things that they still do control. This year's qualifying farce is just top of the list. While the FIA make those kind of decisions, it's better they have as little control as possible."

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5. Posted by jimmynitz, 23/06/2016 23:59 (moderated by an Adminstrator, 24/06/2016 0:05)

"TOTALLY disagree w You Started It. It is critically important that the teams which develop and race the machines have the most input into the technical regulations. likewise, the safety engineers should develop the safety rules. The political organization, known as the FIA, needs to serve as the conductor of the "music" conceived by the experts. Political solutions to technical problems rarely mix well."

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6. Posted by You Started It!!, 23/06/2016 21:58

"Good! The FIA needs keeping in its place. It still has too much power."

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