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Friday, July 25, 2008

A win for Mosley, but what of his future?

Fresh off his privacy case victory over News of the World, FIA president Max Mosley has initiated libel proceedings against the tabloid concerning a column which ran a week after the initial story broke, claiming Mosley lied in his denial of the story.

But even as Mosley moves forward against the newspaper, a number of high-profile personalities in the sport continue to call for Mosley to step aside.

A number of them spoke to the BBC, including Sir Jackie Stewart.

“Max should now step down and be cut out of it totally. His stewardship of the FIA simply cannot be undertaken in its fullest form because of what has occurred,” he is quoted by the BBC.

While Mosley won a vote of confidence from the world motorsport body, several high-profile member organizations have threatened to break away from the FIA over the Mosley affair, including the American Automobile Association.

The Japanese, French, Australian and Spanish automobile federations all voted against Mosley and the German ADAC has suspended its activities with the organization.

Ex-Jordan boss Eddie Jordan agreed it might be an opportune time for Mosley to step aside.

“Max has proven that he is a strong man, he's gone to court and he's not been bullied by a newspaper,” he said to the BBC. “However, there's still a slur against him and people don't forget that easily. If I was Max now having won this case I would say... I'm out of here.”

Paul Stoddart, late of Minardi, was even more blunt.

“Various heads of state that go to Grands Prix don't want to be seen with him,” Stoddart told BBC Radio 5 Live. “The institution (FIA) is completely without credibility. The Crown Prince of Bahrain does not want Mosley in his country while the Australian prime minister refuses to have a meeting with him. There are big public companies that probably won't want to be associated with an institution that Mosley, having been exposed like this, has been representing and will continue to represent.”

And even while paying tribute to Mosley’s accomplishments, Sir Stirling Moss also told the BBC he thinks Mosley’s in a difficult position.

“I can understand how people feel about him, but I like Max. He's an interesting and amusing person,” Moss said. “However, I don't think his position is tenable - he does not hold the stature he held before.”

Mosley’s current term ends October 2009. Don't miss the top stories of the day, subscribe to the SpeedRead Web newspaper now! -- Email SpeedRead -- Learn more about author C.D. Six

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