FIA elects new President

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Following a vote of the FIA General Assembly held yesterday in Paris, France, former Ferrari SpA CEO, Jean Todt, was elected as the new President of the Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile (FIA). The Frenchman defeated ex-rally champion Ari Vatanen by 135 votes to 49. Todt will hold this designation for the next four years as he replaces Max Mosley who was himself the President of FIA for the last sixteen years!

Todt’s list of candidates are refreshed too – Nick Craw (Automobile Competition Committee for the US) becomes President of the Senate, Brian Gibbons (Chief Executive, New Zealand Automobile Association) is now Deputy President Automobile Mobility & Tourism, and Graham Stoker (Council Chairman, Motor Sports Association UK) becomes the Deputy President Sport duties.

While addressing the media present at the function in Paris, Jean Todt said “I wish to acknowledge the extraordinary achievements of Max Mosley’s 16 years as President of the FIA in both sport and mobility. Under his leadership the sport has experienced unprecedented growth and global popularity. He has worked tirelessly to promote the FIA‘s major championships, and to make the sport as competitive, safe and affordable as possible. At all times he has strongly defended the independence and integrity of the Federation as the sport’s governing body.”

Talking about his role at the FIA for the next four years, Jean Todt said, “It is my intention to offer continuity but also to encourage change to meet the new challenges facing the sport and motoring in the years ahead. We are living through a time of unprecedented change set against a hard economic environment. Despite the global recession the world’s automobile population is forecast to triple by 2050. New generations across the world will have the opportunity to enjoy the freedom of mobility that the car offers and it is the FIA’s responsibility to defend their right to safe, sustainable and affordable mobility. We must also make it easier for them to experience the passion and thrill of motorsport. Building on our experience and traditions, the FIA must be ready to shape and encourage this new era of global mobility and global motorsport.”

Lets hope the witty 63-year old Frenchman brings a positive future for the FIA like he brought a trunaround for Ferrari in the last two decades.

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