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Panis: Great season, but F1 politics are 'a joke'

Former Monaco Grand Prix winner Olivier Panis has described the prevailing political in-fighting in F1 in 2009 as 'a joke' – and one that is threatening to overshadow and spoil what is turning out on-track to be a classic season.

This week has been dedicated to further crisis talks as the ongoing FIA-FOTA budget cap stalemate still shows no signs of reaching a satisfactory resolution that would ward off the menace of a manufacturer-spearheaded 'breakaway' series.

Frenchman Panis – who finished a strong fifth outright in his second appearance in the legendary Le Mans 24 Hours alongside compatriots Nicolas Lapierre and Soheil Ayari at Oreca last weekend – argues that it is a sorry state indeed.

“For me it's ridiculous,” the veteran of 158 grands prix told motorsport-magazin.com. “I am loving this season, because Brawn GP is doing a great job and some other drivers are standing on the podium – but the politics are a joke.”

Those sentiments were echoed by fellow former grand prix-winner Riccardo Patrese, who suggests that whilst both sides are outwardly making a show of actively seeking a compromise, neither is actually making enough of an effort to avert a crisis that could conceivably change the face of the sport forever.

“Everyone understands the risk of a disaster,” the Italian told German newspaper Die Welt, “but at the same time nobody is doing anything to prevent it.”

Related Pictures

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Woodgoat - Unregistered

June 18, 2009 2:01 PM

When something has become rotten to it's core, as F1 did, it's better to let it destroy itself, so that it can either be rebuilt or completely done away with, so that something new can be built in it's place. Whatever happens, Ferrari shall be there. I'm not so sure about Mosley. The sooner this thing blows up, the better.

Frank (NL) - Unregistered

June 18, 2009 2:17 PM

For me this is not a particularly great season. It's all but over. Last year it got down to the last race of the season. The rule change made for some good fun the first couple of races, but now the season is all but over.

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