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DATE News (chronologically)
05/18/09
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  
  • FOTA breached Ferrari's 'veto' rights - Mosley
  • 'Politics' threaten French F1 project - Alain Prost
  • Swiss F1 driver Heini Walter dies
  • Vettel needs a manager - Jackie Stewart
  • Rookie Buemi escaped disaster by '10 cm'

FOTA breached Ferrari's 'veto' rights - Mosley
(GMM)  Max Mosley believes Ferrari will lose its court action on Tuesday.

The case, an application for an injunction against the 2010 rules to be heard by a French court, is based on the Italian team's 2005 agreement with the sport's governing body.

Amid the last 'breakaway' threats three years ago, the FIA and Bernie Ecclestone reached a private agreement with Ferrari, offering more commercial income, stable rules, and special 'veto' power regarding major upheavals.

Ferrari claims this agreement has been breached, but Mosley believes that it is the Maranello outfit that did not live up to its end of the bargain: loyalty.

"They were in a position where they had whatever they had under the old 1998 Concorde agreement in return for being loyal," he said.

Mosley believes Ferrari broke the agreement by establishing the Formula One Teams Association (FOTA), of which president Luca di Montezemolo is chairman.

"Essentially, they walked away by forming FOTA.  They were always supposed to be loyal to the FIA, work with us and cooperate," said the FIA president.

'Politics' threaten French F1 project - Alain Prost
(GMM)  Political opposition is posing an obstacle to the health of France's new formula one project, according to Alain Prost.

The former quadruple world champion said that while French prime minister Francois Fillon backs the project at Flins-Les-Mureaux, northeast of Paris, there are troublesome "political problems".

For example, it is believed that Fillon's own environment minister fiercely opposes the project.

"On the side of the government, it is necessary that everything is clear," Prost told the Le journal du Dimanche newspaper.

He said a formal procedure of "public debate" is possible, which would "undoubtedly" complicate plans to stage a French grand prix there in 2011.

Prost indicated that Flins is the only chance of the country returning to the formula one calendar in the foreseeable future.

"The only alternative is Magny Cours, but it is not compatible with the desires of Bernie Ecclestone and the manufacturers," he explained.

With the failure of the Disneyland Paris project in recent memory, Prost said politics are routinely a problem "in France".

"Everyone has their own agenda," the Frenchman contended.  "It is difficult to get everyone in unison, much time and energy is wasted.  And then there are the people who make a lot of noise without knowing enough.

"I don't want to give up but it is difficult to be constantly between two points: it is happening, it is not happening.  It's typical France."

Swiss F1 driver Heini Walter dies
(GMM)  Former grand prix driver Heini Walter has died aged 81.

The Swiss contested just one official grand prix, for Porsche at the Nurburgring in 1962, but also some non-championship formula one races.

Vettel needs a manager - Jackie Stewart
(GMM)  Sebastian Vettel should rethink his policy of not employing a manager, according to former triple world champion Sir Jackie Stewart.

21-year-old German Vettel, the only driver other than Jenson Button to have won a race this season, negotiated his BMW, Toro Rosso and Red Bull assignments with the assistance only of his father Norbert, and an external lawyer.

"Up until now he didn't need a manager," Scot Stewart, 69, told Germany's Auto Motor und Sport.

"But he will not be able to imagine what is going to happen to him if he really becomes a superstar," Stewart added.

Stewart, also a team owner and boss at the end of the 90s, believes Red Bull driver Vettel has not reached his peak of popularity, which will complicate the handling of his own affairs.

"He will become so big that he needs someone to guide him through the things that, apart from driving, are important," he continued.

"He will be dealing with people like politicians, heads of big companies.  He should be prepared for that," added Stewart.

Rookie Buemi escaped disaster by '10 cm'
(GMM)  Formula one narrowly avoided a very nasty outcome at the start of the recent Spanish grand prix.

It was in the first corner melee at Barcelona that Sebastian Bourdais' Toro Rosso climbed over the top of the sister Ferrari-powered car driven by rookie Sebastien Buemi.

"It was dangerous," the 20-year-old Buemi told the Swiss newspaper Blick.

"The other Toro Rosso flew past not less than ten centimeters from my helmet, and a bit of the car hit my right shoulder, which hurt briefly," he revealed.

The incident mirrored one in Australia in 2007, when Alex Wurz's head and hands nearly bore the brunt of David Coulthard's flying Red Bull.

In the wake of the Melbourne crash, additional side head protection was added to the open cockpits of today's F1 cars.

Buemi, meanwhile, clarified that his teammate Bourdais did not apologize for the near-miss.

"No, he said only that he didn't see anything," added Buemi.

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