Max Mosley is determined to stay on as FIA president until the end of his term in 2009. Even if that means leaving the public representation to two Deputy Presidents. This is one the things he states in his four page letter to all FIA club presidents. The more interesting however are the reasons why he wants to continue. One is Mosley’s concern about the election of his successor. And this question is directly connected with the next point. The negotiations… Mosley’s letter may be going on for four full pages but the points that will sure stir the biggest controversy and discussions are his revelations about the current negotiations between FIA and the Formula One Commercial Rights Holder.
“We are in the middle of a renegotiations of the 100 year commercial agreement between the FIA and the Formula One Commercial Rights Holder (CRH). In effect, this agreement governs Formula One. The CRH originally asked us to accept changes to the agreement in order to reduce the CRH’s liability to tax. These we can probably concede. But the CRH has also now asked for control over the F1 regulations and the right to sell the business to anyone – in effect to take over F1 completely. I do not believe the FIA should agree to this.
To do so would be to abandon core elements of the FIA’s patrimony including, for example, our ability to protect the traditional grands prix. We would also be weaker financially but, even more importantly, we would put at risk the viability of the FIA as the regulatory authority of international motor sport and lose a valuable communication platform for the wider interests of the organisation.”
So Max Mosley is basically saying, that if he is forced to resign, FIA is about to loose the control over Formula 1. In the part of his letter where he talks about the election of new president he openly expresses concern that a person may be elected that would actually support the interests of the Commercial Rights Holder in the current negotiations.
I wonder why FIA even negotiates with the Commercial Rights Owner ? The agreement with Ecclestone was made in 2000. If it is a “100 year” deal, why FIA enters into renegotiations in 2008 especially if the demands from the other party are not favourable to FIA … I understand that the dealings behind the scenes are complicated and complex. But FIA is basically being asked for a favour “to accept changes to the agreement in order to reduce the CRH’s liability to tax”. Why it gets drawn into further talks that may result into something not exactly favourable to FIA ? Why then simply FIA does not take a stand “take what we can offer or leave it” ? If the story goes as Mosley describes it I kind of have a feeling that he is not exactly doing the right job here …
So is there a conflict between CRH (Ecclestone and CVC) and FIA and Mosley really has a case here ? Or is this all made up by Mosley in a desperate attempt to survive the vote of confidence in 3 weeks time ?