Mosley urges Todt to be tougher with teams

F1 Fanatic round-up

Posted on

| Written by

In the round-up: Former FIA president Max Mosley says his successor Jean Todt needs to be more confrontational to get his way with the teams.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

The F1 Show – 19th October (Sky, UK only, subscription required)

“He’s got a completely different style, I mean we say this to each other. How effective it is you can’t really tell. He’s still in his first mandate and assuming he’s prepared to go on – I think he will – but he’s working from nine in the morning until nine at night. It’s much, much harder than it looks from the outside. If he goes on then we’ll start to see, really.

“At the moment maybe he’s a little bit too reluctant to confront. He seeks consensus. It’s good to have consensus but sometimes you’ve just get up and do something.

“Like back in 2003 when the teams would not agree about costs I then just said ‘OK, we’re going to stop the qualifying engines, stop the qualifying cars because we’re going to have parc ferme at six o’clock, I’ve got the right to do it under the rules’.

“And the teams went berserk, some of them went into arbitration, but it was the right thing to do and now teams wouldn’t dream of having qualifying cars. Sometimes you’ve got to be a bit confrontational.”

Mosley also said that Ferrari’s support for him during the ‘Spankgate’ controversy made it difficult for him to go against them and introduce the planned budget cap regulations later in his final term.

Horner’s blueprint for F1’s future (Subscription required)

Christian Horner: “Well if you look at the way the English accounts are presented, you’re looking at the gross turnover of each entity, whether it be Red Bull Technology or Red Bull Racing. Within the RRA we’ve complied fully with the RRA within Red Bull Racing, which is the entrant to the Formula 1 World Championship. Red Bull Technology is a supplier to Red Bull Racing…”

‘No regrets’ of not being part of F1: Karun Chandhok (The Times of India)

“I have no regrets because I did everything possible to make things happen in F1. When you feel you wasted an opportunity, then you feel disappointed. When you feel you made every use of the opportunity, you done the best you can, that’s all you can do. If you can’t get the sponsorship, if you can’t get the money you need…that’s life and you just need to get on with it.”

F1: Training like Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button at McLaren HQ (Daily Mail)

“After my performance at McLaren HQ, I don’t think the British constructor will be in a rush to use my services, even as a test-dummy, any time soon.”

Red Bull – Recent Development Analysis (SomersF1)

“The ‘Pelican’ nose augments the airflow in a region that is essential this year as with EBD gone getting airflow under and over the floor in the correct way makes a big difference. As we know this is the primary reason for the ‘Step’ noses in 2012 as the teams try to drive as much air under the car to the floor as possible.”

New Jersey F1 Postponed (I Watch Too Much Racing)

“The real loss for F1 as whole – series sponsors, team sponsors, teams themselves – is the ability to get into the New York City market just across the water from the New Jersey track, and the North Eastern US region as a whole (as well as those in South East Canada).”

Comment of the day

Yesterday’s Caption Competition produced some of the best suggestions yet. Among those shortlisted were suggestions from Burnout, AndrewF1, Chalky, MatthewF1, Havergal and Gaz.

But I’m a sucker for a cheeky pun so I couldn’t resist picking this one from @TommyB89 as my favourite:

Massa: “I don’t care if I have to stay behind Fernando. I’ll never Lego of my Ferrari seat.”

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Imre Pardi!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Kimi Raikkonen clinched the world championship in a stunning finale to the 2007 season five years ago today.

Raikkonen had gone into the race third in the championship, seven points behind Lewis Hamilton and four behind Fernando Alonso.

But disaster befell Hamilton early in the race when he dropped back with a gearbox problem. Having slumped to 18th, he battled his way back up to seventh, but it wasn’t enough. Nor could Alonso keep Raikkonen from the title, as he came in third.

Ferrari used their second pit stops to move Raikkonen ahead of Felipe Massa, who had been leading at home, to clinch the title by a single points from the McLaren pair.

There was more drama to follow, as several cars were protested following the race for using insufficiently cooled fuel. Only when the protest was rejected several weeks later was Raikkonen finally confirmed a the 2007 world champion.

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

49 comments on “Mosley urges Todt to be tougher with teams”

  1. I dislike the way teams get around the rra by setting up sister companies as suppliers to themselves and supply the things they have spent millions on in r&d for little or nothing. It makes a mockery of what it stands for. There should be new regs to stop this kind of thing if the rra is to actually mean anything.

    1. That is the point Horner is making – the RRA is meaningless. Teams can hide expenses easily. Even if they don’t what about the sponsorship deals? For example team A receives engines for 0$ while team B pays $15m. The effective budget is still intact for team A while team B has already $15m less for development and even if team B has excess of money, it can’t use them. In that regard RRA is a two edged blade and a dumb idea overall.

      1. +1 the RRA is meaningless when teams are able to exploit it. I think maybe another championship run within f1 which better rewards teams that performs best under strict RRA regulations. Teams could choose to follow strict rules or cheat or just aim for the main championship – allowing any team that wants to spend 100s of millions to go ahead.. At the moment it looks like all teams would want to win a championship under RRA rules, leaving Red Bull to spend more, winning alone until they are so alone they pull out, Newey is given free range and formula x starts… 24 unrestricted cars hitting 300mph and 8gs round corners..

        I have a dream..

        1. I read the following comments after I posted my comment and remembered how difficult it would be to police an RRA agreement, unless an FIA officer was there at every single point of the car build teams could “cheat” so easily..

          Anyway Red Bull should still pull out and produce their own open wheel racing series with Newey designed cars. They’ve been innovative in running their own competitions and destroying all the competition (who doesn’t think cliff diving is the best form of diving!?) – it’s now time to take on F1..

    2. @mike-e
      The problem is, that its impossible. Especially factory backed teams will have a huge advantage. What does an engine cost? 100 billion, or 6 pence? I think the factory teams would get them for about…. roughly… 0 pence.
      Then there is the aero package. Designed in a wind tunnel owned and run by the factory, and then the bits are sold to the team for 0 pence. Once again. How convenient.
      Development, same story.
      Testing, same story.
      Fuel, brakes, gearboxes, hydraulics, equipment, trucks, accommodation at the race weekends. Basically, everything could be bought by the main company, then spread out, to be ‘given’ to the F1 team at the end of the day.
      Suddenly it might become very cheap to run a F1 team. But in reality it will only be even more expensive and complicated.
      I think the only realistic way of doing it, is to do just like they do now. Limit the number of engines and gearboxes, some other components could be regulated in a similar fashion as well, and then tighten those restrictions little by little.

      1. I think the best thing would be to do away with manufacturer teams alltogether and make the teams have to buy engines, then take account of how much they spend on parts and development regardless of if a sister company makes them, it should be counted asif the team itself is spending that money, and dont allow freebies from sponsors. Then it comes down to getting the best performance out of your budget and cheap innovative solutions, maybe with slightly more relaxed rules on car dimensions and shape. I can dream cant i?

        1. @mike-e
          The problem is, that a certain job can’t be priced. As I say, what is a F1 engine worth? What is a roll of carbon fibre cloth worth? The shirts the team wears, or the jacks they use?
          The price is determined by the seller, and if the seller has a direct connection to the F1 team, then they can sell it for as little as they want.
          They can just hide the actual costs in sister companies and sub contractors and thereby make it impossible to see how much money Mercedes for instance has actually spend on developing, building and distributing their engines, gearboxes and so on.
          It will cost millions a year to get anywhere close to properly enforcing it and it will take such a long time to find out who is actually cheating that we will see championships stripped off teams and drivers years and years after they actually won it. And that will certainly not, in any way, be beneficial to the sport.

          1. And this is especially true @mads in cases like this where the mother company isn’t eager to divulge how much they had to spend on engine development. They will say they put lots of money into being innovative to bring better value etc. And if something is a big success they will say it was because they were smart and innovative, and this is what they do. They aren’t proud to have sunk many millions in it, bc. that’s not sounding all that efficient.

            Those are the sort of things these companies like to call a trade secret if they can.

          2. Yeah thats why i think getting rid of manufacturer teams is a good idea. Get all the companies who want to be involved to release a price list for their components like for instance, kw suspension £15,000, shoei suspension £20,000, ferrari engine £16m, renault engine 13m, and so on before the season and every team has to budget into say £100m for example and that includes aero development. All money spent and parts used must be accounted for. I know it will never happen cause it would make too much sense.

          3. While not easy to do the policing the tools to do so are readily available and commonly to determine whether a company with a dominant position in a market gives fair prices @mads.

            If say Mercedes asks FI to pay 15 million for the engine, and wants 16 Million from McLaren, then its easy to have them take at least 90% of that price (or the same as for the lowest paying customer) for their own engines. For other parts, its possible to establish a “normal cos” level as the minimum, although off course for bodywork its hard to put a price to its development cost.

    3. I think that after reading all of the arguments and comments below, that everyone really has missed the point of F1.
      The whole series was instigated many years go now and the only object was to get a Driver and a Car around a defined track in the fastest possible time with reliability built in to last through an allotted time restraint.

      F1 over the years has fueled a lot of innovation and development in the Motor Industry because it continued to push the limits of the Designers and the teams and when something worked well it moved sideways into everyday cars albeit in a more user friendly form.

      I’ve always believed that F1 should be almost unlimited as far as technology is concerned, and who can forget the Ground Effect and Turbo Cars of yesteryear and the awesome speeds they achieved and still managing to hang on to the track ……. there’s no reason why we can’t have F1 with an unlimited Budget and an open rulebook for Power Plant and Bodywork shape and form.
      Even if what we have now is renamed something else, the term F1 should mean the pinnacle of design and ingenuity and I for one give Adrian Newey my support for his thinking.

      If lower budget teams wish to compete in a competitive sport like the present format of F1 then they should be allowed to continue with strict RRA ruling, with all the teams being honest about what and how they spend the money, but please for heavens sake someone let the Dogs Out and lets see what the Genius Brigade can put on for us as a Mega Speedshow and a Technological Paradise the way F1 should be.

      1. @stewart51
        If you believe that, that is what F1 should become then take a look at the good old CanAm racing. No restriction on engine seize and technology, virtually no regulation in terms of aerodynamic shape either.
        Yes it produced some fantastic cars of the years, but it was never a really a competetive sport.
        First Lola, then came McLaren who blew everyone away, then Porsche.
        There wasn’t much close competition, the same thing would happen in F1 if the regs were loosened up.
        And then of cause the series was drop-kicked by the energy crisis which made the whole show fold as a wet newspaper.

        with all the teams being honest about what and how they spend the money

        If the world worked that way, then everything would be a lot easier, but it doesn’t. Even in amateur sports are there cheaters. It just cannot work in competetive sports. And the higher the level, the less it works.
        Everyone would cheat, costs would spiral, and it would be CanAm all over again.

        1. I can understand what you mean, but can you imagine the kind of thing Newey would come up with ? …. and with all the new hybrid technology around and an open book on fuel engine format etc., like maybe turbines or even Diesel electric, (which sounds silly but the who would have thought BMW would have had an Ass-kickin-car powered by Diesel these days).

          If you tell everyone the Sky’s the limit, they’ll bust a gut to bring something out no-one could ever have imagined, like who says it has to be four wheels ?….. why not five or even ten ?……. vacuum pumps to keep it on the road, and like I said before why not a Gas Turbine like the one Rover developed in a Rover 75 back in the early sixties – the technology wasn’t around in the materials they had to exploit back then but who knows what they could come up with now (not Rover of course but someone like Adrian Newey or even the development wing of McLaren could produce a plant the likes of which we’ve never seen in any Car, let alone a racing formula. If they did that then maybe Car Manufacturers would take up high reliability Turbines running on low quality Gas for the general Motoring Market.

          Because in a truly open Rule book not everyone would have to subscribe to the same technology format – can you imagine the Front Row of Grid with Pole being taken by a Jet powered car and second place a methanol burning V20 …… the point is that no-one will ever know until we take the shackles off the designers.

          1. @stewart51
            True, but it would kill F1. Simple as that. No one can afford to do a jetpowered car, to find out that you have to go for an overpowered straight 4 turbo, and then someone finds out that liquidized whale-fat run in a single, longitudinally mounted cylinder is actually the best format. Who knows, but it will be way too expensive and the smaller privateer teams will run away, and when there is no teams left, then there is no point for the manufacturers to stay either. And just like what happened with CanAm racing, it will all get too expensive, too silly and too pointless for anyone to take part. F1 would cease to exist very quickly if most of the rules were erased.

          2. @mads, there is a middle way (F1) what you describe was called “formula libre”, F1 was introduced to curb the excesses. F1 was successful through the 50’s and 60’s even though advertising was banned on the cars, technology, although less advanced then was just as expensive as it is today but F1 survived on a much smaller revenue pool than today even allowing for the 50% of revenue that FOM takes away.

      2. @stewart51, amen, my only slight criticism would be that Newey is symbolic of whats wrong with the current restrictions, ie. none of his innovations are of any use outside of F1, if as you suggest we went back to a development rule there would be less emphasis on downforce as other areas would provide more bang for the back.

  2. Not having a subscription I am commenting only on the above excerpts ; CH comments that RBR are keeping to the RRA, that is if you divorce Red Bull technologies from RBR and this highlights the problem with a budgetary cap to level the playing field. Leaving aside the difficulty of policing against plain old fashioned cheating in a budget cap you also have technology transfer between associated businesses or divisions, if you think RBR are gaining an unfair advantage imagine how much greater the disparity is with Ferrari as part of FIAT not to mention MERCEDES with interests in everything from aerospace down. Instead of capping budgets the FIA should think through their continual rule changes that necessitate designing a new aerodynamic package every year and develop it all through the year and cost more than any engine development program. Far better are things like banning qualifying only cars,tyres and engines as Mad Max states, similarly the banning of tyre changes (except for wet/intermediates) during the race would save on personnel and tyres, instead we force teams to use a tyre they don’t want to and use the tyres as a random success generaror, I would rather see the teams spend money on engines than on aerodynamics and gimmicks like quick-wearing tyres.

  3. Within the RRA we’ve complied fully with the RRA within Red Bull Racing, which is the entrant to the Formula 1 World Championship. Red Bull Technology is a supplier to Red Bull Racing

    Sometimes I’d like to describe Horner in words which wouldn’t be allowed on this website. When he first came into F1, and even before, I was a fan of his. But now i’m growing weary of him. Its because he acts with great integrity in front of the cameras, but at the end of it all he’ll bend the rules like any other.

    1. actually maybe i should mention i haven’t read the article because i don’t have subscription, but still i stand by my point

    2. @Miketbs, I am no fan of cheating and no fan of performance enhancing drugs, however for RBR to compete on a level playing field with the likes of Mercedes and Ferrari they need a cheap (free ?) supply of the same sort of technology and facilities that car manufacturers already have.
      Cheating is always wrong but as recent revelations in bicycle racing have shown, when the majority of competitors are cheating evrybody else has to cheat just to compete on a level playing field.

      1. @HoHum the problem with doping in cycling is that it’s not a level playing field. First, because everyone’s body is different and so not everyone can take the same amount of dope. Second, Recent revelations suggest the accused party had a far far better doping strategy than other cyclists.
        In terms of F1, some teams have the sponsorship and supply networks set up to be a lot better than others. It’s not a level playing field because not everyone has the same advantage or opportunity.

    3. I haven’t read the full article either @mike-the-bike-schumacher, but from the quoted text, here he seems to be making a lot of sense and explaining the problem well.

      Still don’t want to hear him in an interview, he doesn’t seem to say anything interesting/quite honest/worth hearing on tv, so I usually just ignore him.

      But if he had just said this quite openly from the start, clearly implying that Red Bull, as a whole and not looking at just the team, found ways to spend considerably more than RRA allows, as they indeed believe others might well have done, instead of claiming innocence, I might have kept listening to him.

    4. It’s not cheating if you don’t get caught

      1. It’s still cheating, you just won’t get punished. If you’re able to cheat during an exam and you don’t get caught, you still cheated.

  4. What Horner is saying is perfectly correct from a legal perspective (the only perspective I’m qualified to comment on) and so far as I understand it is correct from an accounting perspective. Based on the accounts of Red Bull Racing they are not breaching the RRA BUT what they are doing is not in within the “spirit of the regulations” so far as I understand them.

    Remember that phrase Christian, it is the one you were throwing around liberally in early 2009 when the double diffuser row was kicking off?

    1. Of course @GeeMac, he also seems to be implying quite clearly that their team is most likely not the only team to do this, and that perhaps Italian reporting rules make it easier to do it without being spotted too, for example.

      And that that is their issue with RRA: others are doing it too, and can do so to a much greater effect by having internal engine and other facilities. So the spirit might well be there, but good luck teasing it out into the open.

      Yeah, the DDD row whining was the start of CH losing interest as interviewee, and me losing enthusiasm for Red Bull as a supposedly “fun” team – made worse by the bendy wings, probably-legal engine mappings, floor etc, capped off by being “innocent” about it all the time.

      1. @bosyber That really is the failing of the RRA, it is just impossible to police. Until the teams actually sit down and make a serious and dedicated effort to curb costs we are always going to have this sort of situation. It’s nonsense, but it is all part of the sport I guess.

  5. Raikkonen won the title today five years ago? Seems like yesterday really. Especially the post-race nonsense and wait for the final results. But I guess that pretty much summed up the season.

  6. What Horner is saying is interesting. The RBR situation perfectly embodies the spirit of F1 in that you respect the rules but still go out of your way to get around them. It happened earlier this year with their ECU situation. The two situations are different but the way they’re interperating the rules allows them and the other teams to exploit them.

    You can never arrive at a satisfactory situation with any kind of cap or RRA and it would be naive to think so. I’m not sure what the FIA or anyone can do or if they should do anything at all. I think the best way to police this is just to make the technical rules and racing rules as watertight as possible as that largely dictates how you spend your money.

    That said, it’s early and my brain isn’t firing on all cylinders yet.

  7. Mosley also said that Ferrari’s support for him during the ‘Spankgate’ controversy made it difficult for him to go against them and introduce the planned budget cap regulations later in his final term.

    And this is the sad bit about F1 (and possibly all sports) administration. Because one party supports the administrator one one aspect, he has to show some kind of defference to them on another aspect.
    It’s nothing like ‘a level playing field’ or ‘all equal before the law’, there are compromises everywhere.
    And that sort of gives the lie to Max’s recommendation that Jean becomes more confrontational. By his own admission, Max compromised when he had to. And when he did take a confrontational stance, he nearly destroyed F1.

    1. Well said @timothykatz, I wonder if he himself sees the issue. Confronting people who you have to work with all the time is also not a very sustainable strategy.

    2. It is not as if Max broke any rule in this particular case. He simply gave up on pushing on a rule he thought should have been introduced. Every one does it. In a difficult situation like he found himself, Ferrari stood up by him, and they put their reputation at stake there. What do you expect? I would have surely done the same if anyone would have supported me in a difficult situation, as every body else would have done I guess. Life at the end is a bunch of comprises along the journey.

  8. Former FIA president Max Mosley says his successor Jean Todt needs to be more confrontational to get his way with the teams.

    Because that worked out so well for Mosley …

    1. Well in a sence it did because things got done.

      look at how much of a mess the young driver test planning was this year, In the Mosley era he’d have seen the teams failing to agree & then pushed through his own ruling regarding when/where the test would take place.

      I saw plenty of examples where Mosley had to intervene because the teams could not agree amongst themselfs. sometimes when things are at a stale mate you need the head of the governing body to step in & dictate to get things moving.

      Of cource the teams are not going to like it but so what, If all they can do is sit in a room & not agree on anything then how else do you get things moving?

  9. Christian Horner: “Well if you look at the way the English accounts are presented, you’re looking at the gross turnover of each entity, whether it be Red Bull Technology or Red Bull Racing. Within the RRA we’ve complied fully with the RRA within Red Bull Racing, which is the entrant to the Formula 1 World Championship. Red Bull Technology is a supplier to Red Bull Racing…”

    I’m not sure what Horner is lobbying for here, but I suspect he’s managed to defeat his own purpose. He brings up Red Bull Technology, which the team had previously used to dodge the ban on customer cars by having Red Bull Technology design and supply cars to both Red Bull Racing and Scuderia Toro Rosso. Red Bull will start using Red Bull Technology to manipulate the rules the minute the RRA becomes mandatory. They did it once before, so why should we believe them if they say tey won’t do it again?

    1. Unless I’m being very stupid, I don’t understand Horner’s reference to “the way that the English accounts are presented”. A financial year for any British company can start on any date they select. After the end of the financial year, a company has nine months to finalise and file the accounts, I think. That could mean that the accounts which might show an overspend in second half of this season, might not be visible until early 2014. And then what? Fine them in 2015, declare the WDC and WCC void?

  10. Mosley is an attention whore, ever since he was replaced, we would keep hearing how he’d go about things. Thankfully we hear him less frequently these days, but when he is interviewed he still shows exactly why I didn’t like the guy.

    He may be right about being tough with the teams and making sure they don’t bully and get their own way, but his way is the way of dictators and it just ends up causing the wrong kind of media. What I like about Todt is that he gets on with his business behind closed doors, he doesn’t have to milk the spotlight to show his power..

    1. What I like about Todt is that he gets on with his business behind closed doors, he doesn’t have to milk the spotlight to show his power.

      and look where that got us.

      a mess over the organisation of the young driver test, a mess over the rrf with teams asking the fia to sort it out & todt failing to do so.

      at least under max’s rule things got done!

      1. @Dizzy, Thats what Bernie said about Adolf.

  11. How about this:
    All teams can only have 1 factory, that factory has a set budget, which is constant across all the teams.
    The engine companies have a separate budget, and the teams may pay for engines and such like, but it doesn’t affect their factory budget.
    The same would go for teams who purchase hydraulics and gearboxes etc, like Caterham etc…
    The teams which supply equipment to other teams don’t have a budget for that, and that doesn’t affect their factory budget.

  12. Horner’s statement proves there’s nothing to prevent the teams from showing the budget numbers that they want, regardless of what budget restrictions are enforced. So if Fiat were to establish a company called Ferrari Technology, and then this company did all the work to build the engines and composites, and sold all the parts for 2 pence each, what can anyone do? The rules only require the team to own the intellectual property for the designs, so there’s no point in trying to police the RRA.

  13. How about this for an idea:

    A hard limited budget for all teams under which ALL costs must come. Anything provided by an outside company can be put into that budget at whatever cost they want (doesn’t have to be what they actually pay) BUT under the regulations, the supplier must agree to sell it to ANY team at that cost.

    Similar rules for any performance testing equipment such as a wind tunnel. A team owning a tunnel can put the cost of tunnel time into their budget at whatever cost they want, but they agree to let any other team who wants to pay that cost use their tunnel as well.

    So, having good technical partnerships etc does get you an advantage in terms of having products designed for your car etc, BUT having huge company backing doesn’t help you in the costs department.

    Obviously this kind of thing would need some tweaking in certain areas, but as a basis as how to control costs it seems to make a lot of sense to me…

    What are everyone’s thoughts? Any obvious failings?

    1. Some teams have internal companies, ie divisions of that team, so it would be relatively easy to cover up the costs by doing things like research under a different company name.

    2. @hufggfg, I think you are on the right track, I have long been in favour of the lesser teams being able to buy last years successful components (or whole cars) at a reasonable price to help them close the performance gap.

      1. That would put teams like Williams and Force India and Sauber out of business, as everyone would want a car like the RB7 or a McLaren.
        Furthermore, due to reg changes, that might not be allowed etc, and they could sell info about it to Red Bull or whoever elses competitors if they have the entire car at their disposal; they can unlock its secrets and tell the World.

  14. The conundrum of F1 funding is most transparent when considering the fact that one organisation charges the entry fee and another awards the participants prizes AND the money for the regulatory institution to do its duties.

    F1 is almost unique in world sport by having a commercial rights holder who is neither part of the regulatory institution or the participants.

    Some may consider Max Mosley’s performance on the Sky F1 show rather smug when he claims his biggest regret was not enforcing cost capping. Many believe his biggest sin was selling the FIA’s birthright – the F1 commercial rights – for a pittance on a 100 year contract for around $3m a year.

Comments are closed.