F1 »

FIA reveals McLaren-Mercedes punishment

Formula 1's governing body the FIA has announced that McLaren-Mercedes has escaped with a suspended sentence for having dragged the sport into disrepute over the Melbourne 'lies' scandal last month.

The multiple title-winning outfit and its star driver, defending F1 World Champion Lewis Hamilton, found themselves in the dock today (Wednesday) as the World Motor Sport Council met in Paris to debate whether any further sanctions were necessary on top of the team and driver's disqualification from the 2009 curtain-raising Australian Grand Prix and the public approbation that followed for having been found to have 'deliberately misled' Albert Park stewards.

Both Hamilton and respected long-time McLaren sporting director Dave Ryan insisted under questioning Down Under that the former had not been instructed to move aside to let Toyota ace Jarno Trulli re-pass him during a late-race safety car period in the season-opener – but subsequently published pits-to-car radio communication proved that to be a false assertion, seemingly in an effort to get the Italian penalised and inherit third place.

The sanctions available to the WMSC for the misdemeanour ranged as far as expulsion from the entire campaign, but the FIA has admitted that its comparative leniency was instigated by an 'open and honest' letter sent by team principal Martin Whitmarsh to Max Mosley accepting McLaren's guilt and wrongdoing over the matter, and an emotional public apology by Hamilton a week on from the incident in Sepang.

The team admitted all five charges of breaching Article 151c of the International Sporting Code on which it was held accountable.

'Having regard to the open and honest way in which McLaren Team Principal, Mr Martin Whitmarsh, addressed the WMSC and the change in culture which he made clear has taken place in his organisation, the WMSC decided to suspend the application of the penalty it deems appropriate,' read an official FIA statement.

'That penalty is a suspension of the team from three races of the FIA Formula One World Championship. This will only be applied if further facts emerge regarding the case or if, in the next twelve months, there is a further breach by the team of Article 151c of the International Sporting Code.'

McLaren previously ran into trouble with the FIA only two years ago over the infamous espionage row that rocked the top flight, finding itself disqualified from the 2007 constructors' world championship and fined a sporting record $100 million. Some attributed the outwardly disproportionate nature of the punishment to the ill-disguised mutual antipathy between FIA President Mosley and Ron Dennis, who recently stepped down from his role as team principal of the Woking-based concern and has since severed all ties with the team.


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
FIA flag. British Formula One Grand Prix.Silverstone, UK.July 8th 2007.
Lewis Hamilton (GB) McLaren Mercedes-Benz FO108W   ING Australian Formula 1 Grand Prix Rd 1 World F1 Championship Albert Park Melbourne  Vic
25.06.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, The race stopped, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and the Safety car
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, The Safety car and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, Carlos Sainz Jr (ESP) Scuderia Toro Rosso STR12 and Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 and the Safety car
25.06.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and Marcus Ericsson (SUE) Sauber C36
25.06.2017 - Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) McLaren MCL32 and 3rd place Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08
25.06.2017 - Race, 1st place Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB13, 2nd place Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 and 3rd place Lance Stroll (CDN) Williams FW40
25.06.2017 - Race, Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32
25.06.2017 - Race, Stoffel Vandoorne (BEL) McLaren MCL32 and Felipe Massa (BRA) Williams FW40
25.06.2017 - Race, Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W08 leads Sebastian Vettel (GER) Scuderia Ferrari SF70H

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.


123 - Unregistered

April 29, 2009 3:16 PM

what a joke F1 has shown itself to be, both the mclaren team and hamilton lied and cheated and worse still intentionally tried to get toyota and trulli punished, what happened? a suspended 3 race ban so in reality there was no punishment at all, so in future we can all cheat then bow our heads and say a tearfull sorry and nothing will happen, the whole thing stinks.



© 1999 - 2017 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.