Britain's David Ward withdrew from the election for the presidency of motor racing's ruling body, the International Motoring Federation (FIA), on Thursday after failing to secure enough support to be nominated.
Ward announced in August that he would stand against incumbent president Frenchman Jean Todt after making several critical comments about the election process and added that he would withdraw if Todt, or another candidate, took on his reform agenda.
But on Thursday he announced that he had failed to secure the backing of enough regional vice presidents to ensure his eligibility.
As a result, Todt is expected to stand uncontested and continue as president.
"For many years the FIA has struggled with governance reform. All too often it takes one step forward and then two steps back," said Ward.
"This is clear from the current election which is being run on a shorter presidential list than 2009, but which is offset by a new requirement for 26 nominating clubs.
"The 2009 eligibility threshold was 23 but has now risen to 37 which is the highest in the history of the FIA."