Max Mosley, the former president of motor sports’ world governing body the FIA, has died aged 81.
Ex-Formula One chief executive Bernie Ecclestone confirmed the news of his death to the PA news agency.
Mosley, who had been suffering from cancer, experienced a family tragedy in 2009 when his son Alexander died aged 39. The coroner ruled Alexander’s death was due to non-dependent drug abuse.
Mosley senior studied at Oxford University, where he read physics, but later trained as a lawyer and became a barrister whose specialism was patent and trademark law.
His love of motor racing began in his youth and he was involved in Formula 2 for Brabham and Lotus before retiring in 1969.
He founded a car manufacturing company, March Engineering, and oversaw its legal and commercial affairs from 1969 to 1977.
He became the official legal advisor to the Formula One Constructors’ Association (FOCA) in the mid-70s, and helped draw up a peace agreement between it and FISA, F1’s governing body at the time.
He became FISA president in 1991 and two years later took over unopposed at the FIA.
Mosley was the youngest son of Oswald Mosley, the leader of the British fascist movement in the 1930s.
He won a high-profile privacy case against the News of the World newspaper in 2008 after it said he had taken part in a “sick Nazi orgy”, and later gave financial backing to the court costs of claimants in newspaper phone hacking cases.