Max Mosley: “I don’t really see Bernie’s role changing…”

Former FIA President Max Mosley believes that Bernie Ecclestone is likely to stay on and run continue to run F1 even if the sport is sold on by CVC.

US firm RSE Ventures has been linked with a joint bid with Qatar to buy CVC’s 35% shareholding.

“I think it’s still very early days for a possible takeover,” Mosley said in a BBC radio interview today. “Because before they actually move they will do due diligence, and that will take some little time. A lot will then come out about the current state of the sport, which may or may not encourage them.

“But I think whatever happens, if it is taken over, I don’t really see Bernie’s role changing – unless and until he wants it to change. Because he’s the person who’s managed to sell it everywhere. I’m sure CVC has had thoughts about an 84-year-old chief executive. The fact is that there’s nobody else that does the job as well. That’s my gut feeling.”

Asked about Ecclestone’s survival at the top of the sport he said: “I think the thing is he’s pretty amazing, the way he keeps going. Most of us, when we get to a certain age – and I’m quite a big younger than him but still old – you get tired. I said to him the other day, don’t you feel tired in the afternoon? And he said then the phone calls come in and the emails come in, and the adrenalin goes. I think the fact is that he’s really interested in what he does and does it very well. Age then tends to be flexible.”

Meanwhile Mosley said that the high spending by the big teams was F1’s major problem at the moment.

“I think there have been a few strategic errors, but the fundamental thing is because it’s become so expensive, and you’re allowed to spend as much money as you can get your hands on, then you have two or three teams at the top who spend a vast amount of money, then you have a succession of teams, like a tail end, who’ve got much less money. So they can’t compete.

“And that means then that the grid is relatively uncompetitive, and that of course interferes with the show. The key move would be to make the small teams competitive, and there are one or two ways of doing that. If Bernie and the FIA get together, they can overrule the teams. Put crudely that’s how it is.”

Mosley also reiterated his suggestion that teams spending less money should have more technical freedom.

“The way to solve the problem is to say to the small teams you can have more technical freedom on condition that you work within a cost cap. So then they for example would be allowed to have a moveable front wing. There are a thousand things that they could do to make their cars competitive with the very expensive cars at the front, but on a much smaller budget. The expensive cars at the front would say, ‘I can’t stand for that, I can’t get overtaken by one of the small teams,’ to which the answer is you could operate under the same regime should you choose to do so.

“Fundamentally the problem is soluble, but it needs a fairly determined attack on the current structure.”


Filed under F1, F1 News, Grand Prix News

4 responses to “Max Mosley: “I don’t really see Bernie’s role changing…”

  1. Mick

    Max Mosley is ancient history. He can’t keep away from the media, taking any opportunity to speculate about F1 which he was last involved in 6 years ago but also still obsessed with covering up the ‘invasion of privacy’ that showed him to be unfit to be in any senior position.

  2. Brian

    What continues to strike me again and again is the ability for these folks who are (or were) in positions of power to toss out these seriously hair-brained solutions to problems. For years Bernie has been spewing forth complete nonsense like double-points, artificial rain, medals, etc. And now Mosley wants to have different spec cars based upon the depth of your checkbook. Yeah, that’ll pass muster with the fans. Wow.

  3. Stone the crows

    Moseley was a far more formidable presence as the President of the FiA, than Jean Todt, and was not able to implement cost caps or anything else he insinuates here. “If Berine and the FiA got together they could overrule the teams.” Ha! Good luck with that, Moseley knows better, if either Mercedes or Ferrari say ‘we’re out of here,’ Eccelstone and FiA have nothing left to work with. Its not as simple as aligning two entities (FiA, CVC,) against one (the Teams) each team is going to have their own interests, and Bernie is well known for leveraging more than one issue at a time. Two different sets of technical regulations in the same series, one for the rich teams and another for the poor teams? And they try to abide by the same sporting regulations? Now there’s a nightmare, it would double the work of the FiA, and increase the work and costs of the teams, technical changes always increase cost. In the past, the way the smaller teams tried to keep up with the manufacturers in the past was to tweak their engine package because that was the cheapest route to go faster. You can’t touch the power unit anymore without months of negotiation, so that avenue is gone. So the advantages have to be in the aero department which is more expensive, because wind tunnel time and track testing are all restricted. What about tyres? Could a team gain an advantage there? Nope, also absurdly over regulated. The teams, the FiA, Bernie and CVC have backed themselves into a regulatory and financial corner, but they’re too busy pointing fingers to do anything sensible about it.

  4. How about this for a cost-control idea?
    A cost cap for teams and total freedom to develop the car (within the rules) throughout the season. And a system which allows teams to spend what they want but have 3rd-party standardised front + rear wings which CANNOT be modified throughout the season (other than track-specific downforce adjustments).
    A fair whack of money gets thrown at wing development and if a team is no longer able to develop these parts this should save a bit as the gains to be made on the rest of the car are minimal.

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