“FIA didn’t reply to F1 letter; F1 bosses have issues with Ben Sulayem’s style”

Top bosses from F1 teams reportedly “have issues” with Mohammed Ben Sulayem’s “personal” style of leadership, as pressure ramps up on the FIA president.
(L to R): George Russell (GBR) Me
(L to R): George Russell (GBR) Me

The FIA did not reply to the angry letter sent by F1, complaining about Ben Sulayem’s comments over its potential sale price, according to Sky.

After Saudi Arabia failed with a $20 billion bid to buy F1, the FIA president questioned the huge price tag, so F1 lawyers wrote him a letter accusing him of “interfering”.

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Sky’s Craig Slater reported: “The FIA, the governing body, does not have a day-to-day commercial role in the running of the sport. F1 subsequently sent a letter to the FIA, making it very plain they thought this was an unacceptable thing for the president of the FIA to do.

“I can reveal that no reply has come from the FIA to F1 but I can say that positive conversations continue between the two institutions. They are functioning normally as they need to do to keep the sport operating properly.

“I’m told there are positive conversations at all levels between those two organisations.

“People are still telling me they have issues with the kind of personal style of leadership Mohammed Ben Sulayem has at the FIA .

(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Red Bull Racing with Mohammed Bin Sulayem (UAE) FIA President; Charles Leclerc (MON) Ferrari;
(L to R): Sergio Perez (MEX) Red Bull Racing with Mohammed Bin Sulayem …


“These are the high-ranking individuals at a number of Formula One teams. So let's see how that develops.

“There is still this friction, maybe Mohammed Ben Sulayem seems to be gesturing one way and Formula One and the drivers to an extent in some areas are pulling in another direction. 

“And that will have to be resolved in the short term for the sport to function properly.”

F1’s owners Liberty Media want to get rid of Ben Sulayem and have a replacement lined up - David Richards, the former BAR and Benetton team principal and Motorsport UK chairman - according to Sport1.

Ben Sulayem found himself at the centre of a separate controversy when past sexist comments emerged from an old website.

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