Mosley apologises and vows to stay
|By Jonathan Noble||Tuesday, April 1st 2008, 17:16 GMT|
Max Mosley has apologised to members of the FIA for any embarrassment caused by the recent revelations about his private life, but made it clear he remains fully committed to his role as president of motor racing's governing body.
In a letter sent on Tuesday to all presidents of the national FIA clubs, all members of the FIA Senate, the World Motor Sport Council and the World Council for Mobility and the Automobile, Mosley blames the allegations about his sexual conduct on a 'covert' operation to discredit him.
The FIA head also denied claims from the newspaper that there were Nazi connotations in his actions.
He also reveals that he intends to take legal action against the News of the World newspaper for the article.
In the letter, Mosley writes: "From information provided to me by an impeccable high-level source close to the UK police and security services, I understand that over the last two weeks or so, a covert investigation of my private life and background has been undertaken by a group specialising in such things, for reasons and clients as yet unknown. I have had similar but less well-sourced information from France.
"Regrettably you are now familiar with the results of this covert investigation and I am very sorry if this has embarrassed you or the club. Not content with publicising highly personal and private activities, which are, to say the least, embarrassing, a British tabloid newspaper published the story with the claim that there was some sort of Nazi connotation to the matter. This is entirely false.
"It is against the law in most countries to publish details of a person's private life without good reason. The publications by The News of the World are a wholly unwarranted invasion of my privacy and I intend to issue legal proceedings against the Newspaper in the UK and other jurisdictions."
Although there have been calls by some for Mosley to resign in the wake of the scandal, in the letter he claims that he has received support from a number of parties who wish him to stand firm in light of the controversy.
"I have received a very large number of messages of sympathy and support from those within the FIA and the motor sport and motoring communities generally, suggesting that my private life is not relevant to my work and that I should continue in my role," wrote Mosley. "I am grateful and with your support I intend to follow this advice.
"I shall now devote some time to those responsible for putting this into the public domain but above all I need to repair the damage to my immediate family who are the innocent and unsuspecting victims of this deliberate and calculated personal attack.
"You can, however be certain that I will not allow any of this to impede my commitment to the work of the FIA."
The letter is the first public statement from Mosley since the story broke in Sunday's News of the World newspaper.
Although Mosley is scheduled to attend this weekend's Bahrain Grand Prix, it is looking increasingly likely that he will choose to skip the event.
Although the news of Mosley's antics has generated a lot of coverage and reaction in the media, so far Formula One teams and manufacturers have remained silent over the matter.