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GP Week : Issue 172
Having spent much of the past few years directing a remake of ‘The Fall of the House of Usher’ starring the Murdoch family, Max Mosley has not been highly visible in F1 circles. But the former FIA president this week gave an interview to Sky Sports F1 filled with career advice for his successor, Jean Todt. Appearing to damn with faint praise, Mosley’s main concern was that the man who had been so domineering as a team manager at Ferrari was not being firm enough in his new role as president. “He’s got a completely different style,” Mosley said. “How effective it is, you can’t really tell. He’s still in his first mandate. I think he will go on, but he’s working from nine in the morning to nine at night. It’s much harder than it looks from the outside. If he goes on, then we’ll start to see. 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 got to get them to just do something. “Sometimes you’ve got to be a bit confrontational,” he admitted. “The thing is the teams are competing with each other and I don’t see how they will ever get together in the common interest. That’s the function of the governing body. It should be the governing body, for example, that imposes the Resource Restriction Agreement. Are you [as a member of FOTA] actually going to sue Red Bull if you think they’ve spent too much? “Back in 2003, when the teams would not agree about costs, I just said ‘we’re going to stop the qualifying engines and qualifying cars and we’re going to have a parc ferme at six o’clock’. The teams went berserk, but it was the right thing to do and now people agree about not having qualifying cars and engines.” Todt’s hands-off approach to Formula One is in direct contrast to Mosley’s priorities as president. While the Briton concentrated on F1 to the detriment of other categories, the Frenchman has been building relationships with the ASNs and promoting the FIA’s Road Safety Campaign instead of appearing on the grid every Sunday. MOSLEY OFFERS TODT UNSOLICITED CAREER ADVICE F1 >>> NEWS On Wednesday at Silverstone, Williams F1 development driver Susie Wolff was given her first chance behind the wheel of the FW33. Wolff was taking part in a straight- line aero test that saw her complete two 50-kilometre runs in last year’s Formula One car. “It was incredible to experience a Formula One car for the first time,” Wolff told the assembled media. “I’ve done a lot of simulator work since I joined the team but nothing compares to the exhilaration of driving the real thing. The conditions were a little tricky as it was quite damp at the beginning of the run but the track soon dried out. The team also did a fantastic job preparing me for today, giving me all the information I needed so that I was always in control. “You can’t underestimate what a big statement that was for Williams to put me in the car today,” Wolff added. “For a team like Williams to take notice of a fast female driver and give her a chance in the car is something quite special. They were the first team to really do it properly and I hope it will open a path for more teams doing it in the future and realising that women should be taken seriously and possibly there will be more females coming in later years and given the chance to drive in Formula One. “I think today was a good first step in the right direction,” she continued. “I hope I have done enough in the first stage to show the team I can be of assistance to do more tests and aerodynamic work. I was conscious of the fact if I wanted more opportunities I had to do well, and that was my main point of concentration. I think I was very lucky in that it’s not a young driver day and not up against some of the best young drivers out there right now.” Over the course of her two runs Wolff was able to experience a mix of conditions behind the wheel. A wet start to the day meant the Scottish driver started her day’s testing using Pirelli wet weather tyres on a damp track. Later on, when the Northamptonshire circuit dried out, she was able to run on demonstration- grade slicks. “My first run in the car was actually on my own with the track to myself and no direct competition from the first lap onwards,” Wolff explained. “For a first day in the car I was actually very lucky. Yes, there was a lot of media there but nobody puts more pressure on myself than I do. I knew what I needed to achieve today whether there were people to witness it or not. I knew what I needed to do to come for ward and that’s what I was focused on doing. It was a little bit tricky in the beginning with the conditions – the track was still damp – and of course you don't want to make any mistakes so it was just about building up. “Of course it's easy for me to say that I managed with no problem as I wasn't on the correct tyres, I did 40 laps and it wasn't a race distance, but there was never one part of the whole day when I couldn't hold my head up or couldn't be in control of the car.” SUSIE WOLFF MAKES F1 DEBUT FOR WILLIAMS 9 GPWEEK.com // 9 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: