Honda website
Honda website

DECEMBER 15, 2006

Todt talks of retirement

Jean Todt, the boss of Ferrari, says that he would have retired from the team if Michael Schumacher, Ross Brawn and Paolo Martinelli had not all departed at once. The Frenchman told Le Figaro that he did not feel that it was right to jump ship at the same time and so stayed on to hold the fort until the transition to a new management team is completed.

There is speculation that he will go at the end of 2007 when Ross Brawn is tipped to return to take over after a year of rest from the rigours of the job.

Todt says that he is not expecting to do nothing after he leaves Ferrari and reckons that he will involve himself in new projects rather than taking up gardening or one of the other established activities of retirees. It is anticipated that he will spend some of his time promoting the ICM brain and spinal cord charity that he supports - but there has also been talk over the years of a role at the FIA.

At 60 years of age Todt is no spring chicken but in a sport in which the FIA President is 66 and the F1 commercial rights holder 76 there is still some potential for him. It remains to be seen whether a job at the FIA would be a good idea. The FIA member clubs have yet to prove that they will do anything other than what they are told to do by the current management but there would certainly be questions about whether it is wise for a former Ferrari man to take the leading role at the FIA when the deputy-president is a former Ferrari man and the second deputy is also an Italian. For a federation that is spreading its tentacles far and wide, this is perhaps a little Modena-centric and might even lead to suggestions that there is some kind of special relationship between Ferrari and the federation - which is not really what the sport needs.