MARCH 19, 2008

The future of Jean Todt?

Ferrari has confirmed the long-awaited news that Jean Todt has left his current position at Ferrari. The 62-year-old Frenchman, who has run Ferrari's racing operations since July 1993, has yet to give any details of his future plans, but we are hearing increasing rumours that Todt will make a run for the FIA presidency in 2009, when current incumbent Max Mosley stands down. Logically, this would be with Mosley's support. Mosley (68) is a great fan of Todt.

Ferrari said that Luca di Montezemolo will replace Tost as the company president and Amedeo Felisa will take over as chief executive officer. Felisa, also 62, has been with Ferrari since 1990. Todt will remain on the board of directors of Ferrari SpA and will continue in his role as president of Ferrari Asia Pacific and Ferrari Western Europe. He will also continue to represent Ferrari on the FIA World Council, which appears to be a clear sign of his future intentions.

Ferrari has nominated the following to the board of Ferrari for the next three years: Luca di Montezemolo, Piero Ferrari (Enzo Ferrari's son), Jean Todt, Amedeo Felisa, Alfredo Altavilla, Diego della Valle, Christopher Gent (former head of Vodafone), Ferruccio Luppi, Sergio Marchionne (FIAT), Paolo Monferino, Lindsay Owen-Jones (former CEO of L'Oreal), Marco Piccinini (the FIA Deputy President) and Sergio Pininfarina.

The next FIA election for president will be in October 2009. There is likely to be much opposition to Todt in FIA circles although the move may not be greeted with much enthusiasm in the F1 world.