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Mosley calls F1 deal into question

June 26, 2009 13:16 IST

Motor racing chief Max Mosley called into question a deal securing Formula One's future on Thursday in a letter demanding a public apology from Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo.

In the document, seen by Reuters, the International Automobile Federation (FIA) president suggested that he could rethink his decision to stand down in October.

Mosley said he and Montezemolo had agreed a deal at a breakthrough meeting in Paris on Wednesday to "present a positive and truthful account to the media" of what had happened.

That meeting ended the threat of a breakaway championship led by Ferrari, with teams accepting more cost cuts and Mosley agreeing to step down.

The 69-year-old Briton said he had been 'astonished' to learn that the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA) had subsequently been briefing the media against him.

He accused Montezemolo and FOTA of falsely suggesting that he had been forced out of office and would have no role in the FIA after October.

"Furthermore, you have suggested to the media that I was a 'dictator', an accusation which is grossly insulting to the 26 members of the world motor sport council who have discussed and voted all the rules and procedures of Formula One since the 1980s," he added.

"If you wish the agreement we made to have any chance of survival, you and FOTA must immediately rectify your actions," wrote Mosley, whose father was the leader of Britain's pre-World War Two Fascist party.

"You must correct the false statements which have been made and make no further such statements. You yourself must issue a suitable correction and apology at your press conference this afternoon."

The letter was sent before Montezemolo and team bosses met in Bologna on Thursday. A Ferrari spokesman had no comment on the letter.

Mosley, who survived calls for his resignation after a sex scandal last year, has traded insults with teams as the sport's crisis came to a head.

At last weekend's British Grand Prix, he labelled some of the team bosses 'loonies' (lunatics) and suggested Renault's Flavio Briatore was after Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone's job.

Mosley said in the letter that he had a long-standing plan not to seek re-election but now considered his options open given the "deliberate attempt to mislead the media.

"At least until October, I am president of the FIA with the full authority of that office," he added. "After that it is the FIA member clubs, not you or FOTA, who will decide on the future leadership of the FIA."

FOTA vice-chairman John Howett, president of Toyota motorsport, said in Bologna that the teams wanted Mosley's successor to be more independent -- a view that would act against Former Ferrari

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