Rolling Start
Motorsport enthusiast and writer Eric Thompson looks at the world of car racing - from Formula 1 to V8 Supercars and beyond

Has Mad Max really been beaten? Did he like it?

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Here we go again. As I mentioned in my last missive, "There's still something not quite right about all this though, and if anyone thinks we 'have peace in our time' within F1 should remember that in 2004 Mosley said he would step down - only to change his mind later that year."

As good as I am, you don't have to be a soothsayer to have realised Max would find a way to keep his grip on the FIA presidency tighter than being tied up in a Chelsea basement.

Even before you could say, in the immortal word of Arnie's "I'll be back", Mad Max has found a way to threaten to stand again because he feels he's been insulted by Ferrari boss Luca di Montezemolo.

You could almost say, that with Di Montezemolo's statement, "The sport is celebrating the liberation from the dictatorship of Mosley."

Followed quickly by further disparaging remarks along the lines that stopping a breakaway rival series and a victory over Max was like "dancing on his grave" - the same words Max used to assert that Di Montezemolo's actions were not a good plan.

Staying in the Terminator vernacular, it's as if Di Montezemolo wants to reactive Mad Max so he can wreck even more havoc on the sport. And to use another metaphor, a wounded animal is 10 times more likely to rip your throat out than one left alone.

Max has had his pride and ego severely disciplined and beaten up and could easily use it as an excuse to go back on his word and stand for re-election as president of the FIA - again. If that happens, God help us all.

For the shortest of a nano-second, I felt a small amount of pity for Max's (it would now have to be former) mate Bernie Ecclestone. He'd been breathing a sign of relief recently in the knowledge his billion-dollar empire was back on safer ground, only to realise Max hadn't stopped poking his oar into a pit of vipers.

But a word of warning for Max - learn from Steve Irwin's death, mate - if you poke, prod and threaten enough animals for long enough, one of them is going to bite your arse right back...big time.

Now, on another note, I'm off down to Dunedin to have a squiz at the week-long intensive Elite Academy of Motorsport course at Otago Universtity. It's the only one of its kind in the world and has produced the likes of Brendon Hartley, Shane van Gisbergen, Hayden Paddon and Emma Gilmour.

Well, more than a squiz actually. In a moment of Max-like madness, I suggested I should do it alongside the nine sub-23-year-old drivers chosen for the course.

So it's me, a not so vibrant, fit and at-the-top-of-game, middle aged man, up against highly tuned machines, definitely at the top of their respective games.

At the end of each day's intensive workout, if I survive, I'll attempt to post a coherent summary. Wish me luck.




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