The FIA appoints a Formula 1 commissioner to help drive improvements
Former Formula 1 journalist Dieter Rencken, who has been working as an advisor to FIA President Mohammed Bin Sulayem for several months, will take up the position with immediate effect.
It is understood that Renken will report directly to Bin Sulayem, and has been tasked with helping to formulate and implement improvements to Formula 1 on behalf of the governing body. The FIA is a separate organization from the FOM, the commercial rights holders of Formula 1.
It will also assist in discussions on the drafting of the new Concorde Agreement, the document under which Formula 1 is governed, which is expected to come into force in 2026.
The idea of having a dedicated FIA commissioner at the FIA has been talked about several times in the past, with former FIA president Jean Todt making it part of his manifesto when he first took office in 2009.
However, the plans were later abandoned based on two separate reasons.
First, Todd found it impossible to find the right candidate, because the FIA, as a non-profit organization, could not pay enough to the best candidates.
Photography: Sutton Pictures
Carlos Sainz Jr. drives for the Renault Sport F1 Team in 2017 alongside journalist Dieter Renken
Speaking at the time, Todd said: “We need to find someone who is willing to give their time, their abilities, almost for free.
“It is something that makes the selection more difficult but we are at a very good stage and for me I would rather wait a few months and get the profile I want to find than rush into the position.”
In the end, Todt abandoned the idea completely because he felt that the commissioner’s role was unnecessary while F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone was too powerful in running the F1 committee.
But last month, Todd’s successor, Ben Sulayem, spoke of the need to mobilize more people to work around him, as he declared his confidence in those who would lead negotiations on the Concorde Agreement.
“It’s not a one-man show,” he said. “I always go to our team. If you had asked me six months ago, I would have said I don’t have enough of a good team to negotiate this matter.
“We have a good technical department with one seat and we have all that. But when it comes to negotiating, negotiating is not technical people: technical people are about constraints, sound, PU. That’s not what is on the business side.
“Now, today, I have a good team. It’s good to start now. But our house is not on fire. The new Concorde agreement should be fair to all three stakeholders: the FIA, the FOM and the ten teams, if they are still there. This is where Which I think we will be satisfied with.