Jean Todt has won an uncontested ballot at the FIA’s General Assembly in Paris to remain as the president of the governing body for a third and final four-year term.
The Frenchman, formerly the Team Principal at Scuderia Ferrari, first took up the role in 2009. This year he faced considerable criticism for the FIA’s soft stance on Sebastian Vettel’s deliberate act of driving into Lewis Hamilton at the Azerbaijan Grand Prix, for which the German was barely sanctioned.
“I would like to thank all of the member clubs of the FIA for their support,” he said after being re-elected by a show of hands.
“I see this as a validation of the direction the FIA has taken under my leadership, and as encouragement to continue the programme we have pursued over the past eight years.”
In a statement, the FIA confirmed that Todt’s final term in office will focus on three key areas of “innovation, advocacy and the development of a strong network of mobility and sport clubs”.
“Innovation is essential if the FIA is to continue to improve and take its rightful place in the world as the leader in mobility and motorsport development,” Todt added.
“To encourage this, we propose to establish an FIA Innovation Fund. Our clubs are the largest consumer organisations in their country and their 80-million road-user members make the FIA one of the largest global consumer bodies.”
On improving mobility, Todt explained: “While the future of mobility is exciting, it also holds many challenges, and it is our duty to help shape it.
“We will have to deal with increased congestion in all our major cities, with the introduction of autonomous vehicles, the growing cost of mobility and with the development of new technologies in developed countries. We need to influence the direction these developments take in order to ensure acceptable outcomes for all.
“My ambition remains for our Federation to continue to strive to be the best it possibly can – stronger, smarter, more secure, more professional and globally respected,” he concluded.
The FIA’s senior leadership has undergone a restructure as well. Brian Gibbons of New Zealand, formerly the Deputy President for Mobility, will take over Nick Craw’s position as the head of the FIA Senate. Craw, who is now 80 years old, was forced to retire as the FIA statutes dictate that candidates must be under 75 years of age on the day of the election or of re‐election.
Gibbons’ former role will be taken by Belgian Thierry Willemarck, who has served as President of the FIA Region 1, Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
As Todt is himself 71, he will be ineligible to stand for a fourth term when the FIA elections are next held in 2021.
Image via FIA World Rallycross