Todt re-elected as FIA president for third and final term

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Jean Todt will continue in the role of FIA president until the end of 2021 after being re-elected by the governing body’s General Assembly in Paris on Friday.

Todt took up the role of FIA president in 2009, and confirmed earlier this year he would seek a third term, with no other candidates coming forward to oppose him.

Despite running unopposed, Todt nevertheless required confirmation from the FIA General Assembly, which arrived at its final meeting of the year in Paris on Friday.

“It is gratifying to have such universal support. I would like to thank all of the Member Clubs of the FIA for their support,” Todt said.

“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.”

Todt has confirmed he intends for his third term to be his final one, running for another four years to the end of 2021.

In his acceptance speech, Todt confirmed plans to focus on three main areas for his final term: innovation, advocacy and the development of a strong network of mobility and sport clubs.

“From time to time there are some who challenge this role, and I remind them that Motor Sport will always need a regulator, it will always need fair play, it will always require ethics, and it will always need an independent referee,” Todt said.

“This is the vital role the FIA plays and one it will continue to play in the future. 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. To encourage this, we propose to establish an FIA Innovation Fund.”

The FIA also confirmed a reshuffling of its senior management under Todt in a statement issued on Friday.

“After eight years as President of the FIA Senate, the body with oversight of the management and finances of the Federation, America’s Nick Craw steps down from the role,” the statement reads.

“Mr. Craw will be replaced by New Zealand’s Brian Gibbons, who has acted as FIA Deputy President for Mobility since 2009. That role will now be now be filled by Belgium’s Thierry Willemarck, who moves from his position as President of Region I of the FIA.

“Graham Stoker continues as Deputy President for Sport, a post he has held since 2009.”

“I have encouraged the selection of a leadership team that is a mixture of the experienced and the new. The experienced will ensure we continue to respect our heritage, uphold our values and avoid the pitfalls of the past,” Todt said.

“The new faces will bring fresh, innovative thinking to our Federation. I am particularly pleased that a number of talented women have been nominated for important positions by our clubs.

“It is a beginning I hope will lead the FIA to embrace greater diversity and recognize and reward talent, wherever it exists.”

Starting lineup grid for IMSA Petit Le Mans: Tom Blomqvist puts MSR on pole position

Petit Le Mans lineup
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IMSA WeatherTech SportsCar championship contender Tom Blomqvist put the Meyer Shank Racing Acura at the front of the starting lineup for the Motul Petit Le Mans at Michelin Road Atlanta.

Blomqvist turned a 1-minute, 8.55-second lap on the 2.54-mile circuit Friday to capture his third pole position for MSR this season. Earl Bamber qualified second in the No. 02 Cadillac for Chip Ganassi Racing.

Ricky Taylor was third in the No. 10 Acura of Wayne Taylor Racing, which enters Saturday’s season finale with a 19-point lead over the No. 60 of Blomqvist and Oliver Jarvis (who will be joined by Helio Castroneves) for the 10-hour race.

PETIT LE MANS STARTING GRID: Click here for the starting lineup l Lineup by car number

PETIT LE MANS: Info on how to watch

With the pole, MSR sliced the deficit to 14 points behind WTR, which will field the trio of Taylor, Filipe Albuquerque and Brendon Hartley in Saturday’s race.

“We really needed to put the car in this kind of position,” Blomqvist said. “It makes our life a little less stressful tomorrow. It would have given the No. 10 a bit more breathing space. It’s going to be a proper dogfight tomorrow. The guys gave me such a great car. It’s been fantastic this week so far, and it really came alive. I’m hugely thankful to the boys and girls at MSR for giving me the wagon today to execute my job.

“That was a big effort from me. I knew how important it was. It’s just awesome for the guys to give them some sort of reward as well. It’s always nice to be quick. If you do the pole, you know you’ve got a quick car.”

Though WTR has a series-leading four victories with the No. 10, MSR won the Rolex 24 at Daytona and has five runner-up finishes along with its three poles.

The strong performances of the ARX-05s ensure that an Acura will win the final championship in IMSA’s premier Daytona Prototype international (DPi) division, which is being rebranded as Grand Touring Prototype in the move to LMDh cars next season.

Taylor qualified third despite sliding into the Turn 5 gravel during the closing minutes of qualifying while pushing to gain points.

“Qualifying was important for points,” Taylor said. “Going into it, if we outqualified the No. 60 Meyer Shank Acura, they had a lot to lose in terms of championship points. So, we were trying to increase the gap over 20 points which would’ve made a big difference for tomorrow. We would have loved to get the pole and qualify ahead of the No. 60, but in the scheme of the points, it didn’t change a whole lot. I’m feeling good since it’s such a long race, and the No. 10 Konica Minolta Acura team does such a good job strategizing and putting us in a good position.

“I’m very confident in our lineup and our team compared to them over the course of 10 hours. I’d put my two teammates up against those guys any day. I think we are all feeling optimistic and strong for tomorrow.”

In other divisions, PR1 Mathiasen Motorsports (LMP2), Riley Motorsports (LMP3), VasserSullivan (GTD Pro) and Paul Miller Racing (GTD) captured pole positions.

The broadcast of the 10-hour race will begin Saturday at 12:10 p.m. ET on NBC, moving at 3 p.m. to USA Network.


QUALIFYING

Results

Results by class

Fastest lap by driver

Fastest lap by driver after qualifying

Fastest lap by driver and class after qualifying

Fastest lap sequence in qualifying

Best sector times in qualifying

Time cards in qualifying

PRACTICE RESULTS: Session I l Session II l Session III