FEBRUARY 24, 2005
Frank Williams and Max Mosley
The recent days have seen a string of stories based on remarks made by Sir Frank Williams and his partner Patrick Head during their annual media lunches before the start of the F1 season. These remarks were far from flattering about the FIA President but, having talked to most of the teams in recent weeks, reflect fairly accurately the feelings that exist amongst the F1 team owners. The teams do not appear to feel any great antipathy to Bernie Ecclestone (although most seem a little wary of the commercial rights holder). They are unhappy with the way the FIA President has been running the sport.
"The prevailing atmosphere stinks," Williams said. "It is very unhealthy. F1 has never been like this before, even back in 1980 when we all fought the war against Max's predecessor, Jean-Marie Balestre. He never tried to interfere so much in the daily life of the teams. We would be happy with less technology, but not with the zero technology that Max wants. Bernie admits that he wants to keep the manufacturers, but Max wants them out. They are just too powerful for his liking."
There are however problems for Ecclestone as well as it is clear that no-one is happy with the deal that has been struck between Formula One Management, the FIA and Ferrari.
The remarks will not go down well with Mosley but while he is in a relatively powerful position as president of the FIA, he is still keen to dampen down criticism because there is an FIA presidential election in the autumn. Mosley looks likely to stand again but the discontent in F1 might convince someone else within the federation that they might stand against him.
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FRANK WILLIAMS AND MAX MOSLEY