Formula 1 Racing

FIA is target of “malicious” attacks

Susie Wolff

FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem has told the organisation’s members he is the target of “malicious” attacks aimed at destabilising him and the governing body.

He believes recent events have “unfolded with one clear objective: to target the very heart of our leadership and undermine the foundation of our federation.”

Ben Sulayem made the claim in a letter to FIA members, portions of which were published by the Associated Press.

He said the FIA has “fallen victim to malicious leaks of confidential and sensitive information, tarnishing our reputation and causing concern among our members.”

“Yet, despite these attacks aimed at my character and our organisation as a whole, we have emerged stronger and more resolute than ever,” he added. “We know that the ultimate goal of these reprehensible acts was to target me and to weaken the very essence of the FIA.”

Ben Sulayem was cleared by an FIA Ethics Committee investigation earlier this week of two counts of wrongdoing during last season. The committee investigated claims he had attempted to intervene over a penalty issued to Fernando Alonso at the Saudi Arabian Grand Prix and tried to interfere with the certification of the new Las Vegas Strip Circuit.

Within a few hours of the committee’s decision being made public on Wednesday, news broke of a further controversy involving the FIA. F1 Academy CEO Susie Wolff announced she has brought a lawsuit against the federation over its handling of allegations against her and Mercedes team principal Toto Wolff, her husband, last year.

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There have also been claims the FIA was told on multiple occasions of allegations against Red Bull team principal Christian Horner. The team’s owners arranged an investigation into Horner, which cleared him, but is now subject to an appeal.

Report: Susie Wolff’s complaint against FIA won’t be “brushed under the carpet”

In his letter Ben Sulayem said he was committed to “an environment of transparency, accountability and unwavering integrity within the FIA.” However some Formula 1 team principals believe the FIA has not shared sufficient information about its handling of recent controversies.

“All the items that have come to light here in recent times are very serious situations,” said McLaren Racing CEO Zak Brown in an FIA press conference yesterday. “We’re living in 2024, not 1984, which means total transparency.

“I think the three situations are…

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