It seems as though FOTA is gunning for FIA Chief Steward Alan Donnelly. They have had problems with Donnelly before, that saw a letter being sent to the FIA. The letter claimed that Max's right-hand man was trying to "create a division between the FOTA teams." The letter went on to say that Donnelly was acting outside his position during the Turkish GP.
The response from the FOTA claim by the FIA: "We utterly reject the suggestion in the correspondence received." FOTA responded with a second concern and one that suggests that there is dirty work involving Manor GP getting the much sought after F1 slot.
The complaint is saying that Sovereign Strategy, a company owned by Alan Donnelly, was running a public-relations strategy for the Manor F1 team. It also claims that Donnely was introducing a senior executive from Manor to the other principles at the Spanish GP. Clearly these actions, by a top FIA representative at each GP, were viewed as a conflict of interest by FOTA.
Donnelly along with David Ward, are Max's closest allies and one must question now the selection process that saw Manor get a much sought after place on the 2010 grid.
The technical director for the Manor team is none other than Nick Wirth. Wirth was Max's partner in the Simtek F1 team, a junk team from the early 90s. It was their car that lost its front wing and as a result Roland Ratzenberger was killed. His death had a huge impact on another driver who was killed the next day, Ayrton Senna. They also had close ties with Cosworth, the FIA, and the French Government.
So we have Max's old partner at Manor, his right-hand man, as Chief Official for the FIA and clearly one of two people that Max will be pushing for to replace him as president. FOTA are very much aware that Donnelly is on Max's short list to replace him and they will want to make sure that whoever ends up as president, will be far removed from Max and Bernie!
After a little more digging, can add the following. Max in the past has shown clear bias towards "friends" One case that can be used as an illustration is that of Andrea Moda in 1992.
Moda purchased a chassis design from Simtek, then Max embarked on a campaign to include the team on the grid. Must note, this was done, even though they refused to pay the entry fee, which at that time 100.000 Pounds. So the question is raised, why was Max pushing so hard for Moda's involvement in F1, could it be that it was because they were in partnership with Simotek?
As for Manor and Max's long time partner Nick Wirth, the ties with the FIA are far reaching. One example was that on the Wirth Research website the FIA was listed as an official client, That was until about 12 days ago, when it was removed, which by the way coincides with the time that questions were being asked. Nick Wirth, was on a FIA committee, that was studying rear wing designs, was also involved with their road safety campaign. Manor is clearly a "Trojan Horse" that is in the series to defuse the power of FOTA. They will be very aware of this, question is, will they let them into the association?
When it comes to the dealings of Bernie and Max, everywhere one looks, there is dirt!