Ari Vatanen has hit back at Max Mosley, critical of the current FIA head's claims that he will 'lose badly' to Jean Todt in the forthcoming presidential elections.
A letter, leaked to one of Vatanen's proposed vice-presidents, Jordan's Prince Feisal, revealed that Mosley believes Todt, his favoured successor, will take a landslide victory in the 23 October vote,
The FIA-headed letter alleges that Vatanen's campaign 'has been marked by untruthful claims' and 'insults', amid accusations that 'the entire FIA system is unfair, autocratic and unjust'.
"It is not possible to make statements like Vatanen's and then expect the victims of those insults to forget what has been said," the letter claimed, "Any thoughts that, after this election, everyone in motorsport can unite and work together can now be forgotten. The more Vatanen criticises these [FIA] policies and the more insulting and untrue his claims, the more he damages the interests of those associated with him."
The Finn, however, insists that Mosley's assertions are a disappointing twist in the election race with just weeks to go before the crucial vote.
"I personally see it as another sad episode, it is not constructive," Vatanen told BBC Sport
, "I would like FIA delegates to remember Max Mosley for the good things and his graceful style [and], if the election is a foregone conclusion, there is no need to write such a letter.
"There is very strong intimidation in this current regime. It is a question of the new and old world. We promise new competent people who will return the derailed FIA to the straight. My wife is my only spin doctor and she is the best because she knows right from wrong."
Despite Mosley's outburst, Vatanen - who wants details of the vote to remain secret - remains confident that his campaign will be successful, claiming that the motorsport world is ready for a change of leadership.
"It is a clash of cultures and the tide has turned, we are leading already," he claimed, "The dynamics are on our side.
"It is all about meeting every single human being as an equal, I want people to be able to express their passion for the sport without the fear of recrimination."