Carlos Gracia, the head of the Spanish motorsports federation, says he would not be surprised if Max Mosley put himself up for another term as FIA president, in the wake of claims made by the Formula One Teams' Association (FOTA) last week.
Mosley has been left angry by comments from FOTA members that he was being sidelined from F1 completely as part of a peace deal reached last week, and that the teams' body would prefer an 'independent' president in the future. His unhappiness prompted a demand for apology from FOTA, which was not forthcoming, and has resulted in what Mosley claims is "pressure" on him to stand once again.
Gracia said he fully understood Mosley's position, as he too expressed dissatisfaction about the comments made by FOTA chairman Luca di Montezemolo.
Speaking to Spanish radio station Onda Cero
, Gracia said: "I don't support Max Mosley to the death, but I do support respecting institutions, and what Luca di Montezemolo has done was show a lack of respect to the FIA and the World Council.
"It wouldn't surprise me if Max Mosley runs for re-election. The worst thing you can do with an animal is leave him wounded, and what Luca di Montezemolo has achieved is to re-activate Max. You can't dance on someone's grave before he's dead."
Gracia expressed an interest in running for FIA president himself, but made it clear he would have qualms about going up against Mosley.
"I'm not ruling out running for president of the FIA," he said. "I believe Max Mosley has a lot of support and I would think twice before running against him, because I don't want to take any risks that may damage Spanish motorsport. Above all, I'm the president of the Spanish Federation and I have to defend Spanish sport."
AUTOSPORT reports FOTA is steering clear of getting involved in any fresh battle with Mosley over what was said last week, and is instead focusing on putting its 2010 rules in place over the next month. No meeting of FOTA's senior figures is scheduled for this week, but behind-the-scenes negotiations are ongoing on terms of framing the new Concorde Agreement, that would bind the teams, the FIA and Formula 1's commercial rights holders together.