Force India has received an unwelcome piece of news as F1 2010 approaches the end of its annual August break, with the Queen's Bench Division in the High Court of Justice in London ordering the Silverstone-based squad to pay more than €1 million in damages to Aerolab.
The matter arose after Aerolab filed a court case against FIF1 for unpaid fees relating to services provided by the Italian aerodynamics company, and the dispute between the two parties has been ongoing for some time, with further legal issues pending regarding wind tunnel models that Aerolab produced for grand prix newcomer Lotus Racing.
Force India's bill on this occasion is for €1,074,730, plus damages and interest at the rate of eight per cent – but Aerolab seems to be under no illusions that this payout is likely to be far from the end of the quarrel.
'As a result of the retaliatory action already taken by Force India, it is expected that Aerolab's director, Mr. Jean Claude Migeot, will soon be charged pursuant to a criminal complaint filed in Bologna,' read an official statement released today. 'Aerolab is confident in the positive outcome of all judicial matters in this affair.
'It appears that Force India's strategy will be to try and force Aerolab into a settlement that the company has no intention of accepting. The upcoming Italian Grand Prix
at Monza, during which Force India's assets will be present under Italian jurisdiction, could trigger further exchanges of action between the two parties.'