Nelson Piquet Jr and his father, triple F1 champion Nelson Piquet, has started legal proceedings against former Renault F1 team boss Flavio Briatore over the 'Crashgate' scandal.

Following his departure from the team last season, Piquet Jr revealed that he had been asked to deliberately crash out of the inaugural Singapore Grand Prix in an attempt to aid the chances of team-mate Fernando Alonso - who duly secured victory.

Briatore and director of engineering Pat Symonds both lost their roles with Renault as a result of the scandal and were hit with bans by the FIA, although a French court has since overturned that ban.

However, a report in the Independent has now revealed that the Piquet's have launched a ?200,000 libel action against Briatore over a press release issued by the Renault team which accused them of giving false evidence to the FIA and of blackmailing the team.

According to the report, Piquet has hired noted libel lawyer Dominic Crossley to take the case on.

"Given Renault F1's failure to accept the Piquet's invitation to withdraw the allegations and apologise, they feel they have no other choice," he said.

Piquet is now competing in the United States in the NASCAR Truck Series.

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