Flavio Briatore has 'effectively been deleted from the world of motorsport' in the wake of Renault's 'Singapore-gate' scandal, contends BBC F1 commentator Martin Brundle - and even though the Italian has 'done a lot of good things' for the sport, his former driver expects that he won't be missed.

Yesterday's FIA World Motorsport Council (WMSC) hearing led to Briatore being banned indefinitely from any future involvement in Formula 1, with the firm ruling that any team or driver henceforth associating themselves with him will not be entitled to compete. Moreover, there are suggestions the 59-year-old could now find his duties as co-owner, chairman and board director of London football club Queens Park Rangers (QPR) taken away from him as a product of the fall-out [see separate story - click here] - one that even prior to the WMSC reunion had already cost him his job as Renault F1 managing director.

Brundle worked closely with Briatore when he raced for Benetton back in 1992 as team-mate to Michael Schumacher. Whilst he admits he is sad to see one of the paddock's most colourful characters depart the fray - most likely for good - the Englishman opined that such is the lightning fast pace at which F1 moves, his passing will soon be forgotten.

"Clearly Briatore and [Pat] Symonds have taken the brunt of the pain," Brundle told the BBC. "Flavio has effectively been deleted from the world of motorsport. Of course he's got world championship success and personally I quite like the guy - I drove for him once, and you can only speak as you find and I never had a problem with him.

"He has upset a lot of people [and] he has a difficult track record in some respects in Formula 1, but he's done a lot of good things too for the sport. It will move on, though - Formula 1 is all about tomorrow, not yesterday - and it's sad to report, but Flavio won't be that much missed."

Someone else who 'won't be much missed', the 50-year-old suggests, is Nelsinho Piquet, who exposed the race-fixing conspiracy in the first place after revealing that he had been instructed by both Briatore and the Enstone-based outfit's executive director of engineering Symonds to deliberately crash out of the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix to prompt a safety car period that enabled team-mate Fernando Alonso to win the top flight's inaugural night race - and arguably prevented Renault from pulling the plug on its F1 project at season's end. The whole situation could have been avoided, Brundle reasons, had the Brazilian just said 'no'.

"Nelson Piquet Jnr is in his twenties," he underlined. "He's a man, not a boy, and he's responsible for his own decisions. With a driver's head on, I can't believe that he agreed to do it, or actually carried it out - the intentional crash. I'd have felt a lot more sympathy for him had he blown the whistle straight after the race, if he felt that upset about it. He's waited for a year and to be fired from his job before he felt the need to tell anybody about this.

"He says he wants to get back into Formula 1, but I would have thought he's effectively unemployable, because which sponsor wants to be involved with this sorry mess? It's sad for him, but he should have said no. He should have taken his own decision on that, or spoken to his dad or done anything other than stick that Renault in the wall.

"Desperate men do desperate things, and I think Renault needed a result last year - they needed to keep Fernando Alonso engaged, ING their sponsors were beginning to move away, it was an ING-sponsored event, they had a very fast car that failed in qualifying... It all built up to them having to take this crazy decision in the race, of crashing one car to help the other that was out-of-position on the grid.

"I've been around motorsport for over 35 years, and I've not seen anything like this. [Ayrton] Senna intentionally took [Alain] Prost off the road once, but that was a personal issue. All sorts of things happen in any sport I think, and there's politics and all sorts of skulduggery going on. Of course there's cheating, and then there are other cases of goalies letting in goals or losing matches because you're part of a betting ring. Whatever it is, it's scandalous, but intentionally crashing a racing car and putting others at risk and affecting the result - so many people were affected by this action - it's the worst I've seen in motorsport.

"Formula 1 has to clean its act up and remember its core customers are the fans; they've got to keep them happy, because sponsors will turn up if the fans are happy and attending the races. On a whole corporate level, I don't think we're sending out a very good signal. We've got to clean up our act and move forward."

As to the penalty itself - which many have slated as derisory given both the gravity of the crime committed and the sporting record $100 million fine meted out to McLaren-Mercedes over 2007's infamous espionage row - Brundle argues that the FIA's hands were to a certain extent tied, needing to punish Renault but at the same time having to be careful not to give the French manufacturer just the excuse it needs to follow Honda and BMW out of the exit door.

"I think the FIA World Motor Sport Council had a difficult job to do," insisted the former Tyrrell, Zakspeed, Williams, Brabham, Benetton, Ligier, McLaren and Jordan ace, "to find a balance of keeping Renault engaged in the sport and giving a sufficient penalty. A suspended two-year ban for Renault means nothing really - they're not going to do that again surely, are they? They're having to put some money into the safety fund too, though we don't know how much. I think many will perceive them as having been treated quite lightly compared to, say, McLaren of 2007.

"Renault of course have the embarrassment of what's gone on, and also the loss of reputation of everybody involved is quite immense - so there's a lot of punishment there already. I think many will have expected them to take a bit more punishment than they have, though; generally speaking I think Renault will feel slightly relieved, and of course they have a lot of participation in Formula 1, GP2, the new GP3 series... They're very powerful in the world of motorsport, and we don't need them leaving Formula 1.

"We'll have to wait and see what Renault do now. I believe they had a board meeting last week. Hopefully they'll stay in the sport - they're an important part of our sport - [but] they need to put somebody in charge of the team with great integrity and put this behind them."

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