FIA counters criticism of its role in Formula 1 sale

The FIA has moved to counter what it believes is "inaccurately informed" or "malicious" questioning of its role in approving Liberty Media's takeover of Formula 1

FIA counters criticism of its role in Formula 1 sale

The FIA gave its approval for the sale of F1 to Liberty Media last month, paving the way for the deal to be completed.

There has since been suggestions of a conflict of interest given the FIA stood to gain in any sale, based on owning a 1% stake in F1.

On Tuesday, British MEP Anneliese Dodds issued a statement to Autosport saying: "There is also significant conflict of interest over the recent sale of the sport to Liberty Media, after the regulator received a $79.5million (£63.7m) profit from authorising the sale."

But having been "made aware of certain declarations and comments, clearly inaccurately informed or made maliciously, relating to this process", the FIA has defended its actions.

"The FIA would naturally be happy to demonstrate the absence of any conflict of interest to any competent authority that may so request," it said in a statement.

"There is no conflict of interest on the part of the FIA with regard to its approval of the change of control of the CRH (commercial rights holder) which has been approved by the World Motor Sport Council taking into consideration exclusively the terms of the existing agreements between the CRH and the FIA and the best interests of the championship.

"As per the agreements made in 2001 for 100 years, the FIA could only have withheld its consent in the event that the change of control would materially alter the ability of the CRH to fulfil its obligations.

"It is obvious that the taking of control of the Formula One Group by Liberty does not create such a risk, and nobody has ever suggested a different view in this respect."

The FIA also moved to distance itself from F1's unequal distribution of prize money.

"The prize money allocated in the Formula 1 world championship is done so in accordance with the bilateral agreements that exist between each team and the Commercial Rights Holder.

"The FIA has no knowledge of these agreements."

"The FIA looks forward to its collaboration with both Liberty and the Formula One Group to create a constructive relationship that will ensure the continued success and the development of the FIA Formula 1 world championship in the long term."

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