As expected, Toto Wolff’s former special advisor Shaila-Ann Rao has left her role as Interim Secretary General for Motor Sport.
Back in June, Toto Wolff’s former special advisor Shaila-Ann Rao had been appointed Interim Secretary General for Motor Sport.
From 2016 until 2018 Rao worked as FIA’s Legal Director and then she became a special advisor to Mercedes team boss Toto Wolff. She then re-joining the FIA as a replacement for Peter Bayer in 2022.
When rumours of Red Bull’s 2021 budget cap breach started making the rounds, the Austrian team implied on several occasions that she might have leaked the information. However, FIA president Mohammed Ben Sulayem vehemently denied these insinuations.
When rumours started floating around that Rao is on her way out of the FIA, supposedly as a reaction to the controversy, Ben Sulayem pointed out that she held an ‘interim’ position, and was never meant to remain with the organization long-term.
The FIA has now officially announced Rao’s departure.
“Shaila-Ann Rao returned to the FIA to assist the new Presidential Team during the transition period as Interim Secretary General for Motor Sport,” read a statement from the FIA.
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“Shaila-Ann successfully managed this transition period, providing valuable support and assistance to the FIA President and the organisation during this period which is now coming to an end.
“Shaila-Ann will now therefore be leaving the FIA following the end of the Formula 1 Season.
“The FIA thanks Shaila-Ann for her support during this period,” the statement concluded.
Ben Sulayem also gave his comments on Rao’s departure.
“On behalf of everyone at the FIA, I would like to thank Shaila-Ann for her invaluable contribution in her role as Interim Secretary General for Motor Sport during an important transitional phase for the organisation,” he said.
“In particular, Shaila-Ann has provided me with great support in respect to Formula 1, always acting with professionalism and integrity,” Ben Sulayem concluded.