It has been claimed that the FIA is endeavouring to stop ITV-F1
pundit Martin Brundle from switching over to the BBC
next year – suggesting the ex-Formula 1 star's commentary is 'not up to standard'.
It was revealed last month who the five most likely candidates for the BBC's
commentary team are [see separate story – click here
] – and to fans' clear satisfaction, Brundle was amongst them.
The man who began 158 grands prix for Tyrrell, Williams, Benetton, McLaren, Jordan, Ligier and Brabham from 1984 to 1996 is popular for his witty, insightful commentary style, dry humour and outspokenness – the very qualities, perhaps, the FIA appreciates the least.
Last year Brundle was issued with a writ by FIA President Max Mosley for having suggested in his regular Sunday Times
column that the spy scandal that rocked the sport was little more than a 'witch hunt' led by the governing body against McLaren-Mercedes. According to F1SA
, the 49-year-old has in the past revealed that he has been the subject of FIA complaints to ITV
that his commentary 'is not up to standard'.
'I expect my accreditation pass for next year will be hindered in some way to make my coverage of F1 more difficult and to punish me,' he remarked last year.
Moreover, despite winning an unprecedented six Royal Television Society awards for his commentating, the Daily Mail
reports that controversial FIA delegate Alan Donnelly 'has been trying to dissuade BBC
executives from employing Brundle'.
'Alan Donnelly, the official representative at races of FIA chairman Max Mosley, has been trying to dissuade BBC
executives from employing Brundle, who has been at odds with the governing body since he questioned their handling of last year's McLaren Spygate affair,' the British newspaper states.
Meanwhile, as the Beeb continues to insist it has yet to confirm its final line-up, it has been mooted that former F1 team owner Eddie Jordan could be on the corporation's wish list.
The Irishman – who ran his eponymous Jordan Grand Prix outfit in the top flight from 1991 until its purchase by Midland F1 in 2005 – has refused to comment on any such speculation, but according to the Daily Express
the 60-year-old 'has been selected for his expertise both on and off the track'.