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09/16/2009

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It's an interesting story and I'll be curious to see just how the FIA handles it, given what transpired with the 2007 StepneyGate spying scandal. Certainly a monetary penalty of similar amount needs to be handed down; MM got rid of Ron Dennis and now the opportunity to get rid of Flavio must have him salivating. :)
It is unbelievable that after what happened in '07 that this would take place. I'm shocked but sadly, not overly surprised.

Good riddance Flav, tough break Pat.

2nd Submission:

Sir:

Renault is certainly hoping, indeed, that the FIA will impose a minimal fine on the team. Their 08 F1 budget was $275m. As you know, they have been threatening to leave F1 prior to the financial melt-down. So, I cannot envision them staying if a hefty fine and added penalties are imposed.

Having imposed that outrageous fine on McLaren for an infraction not proven, the FIA ought to be compelled to impose a penalty of a greater severity and magnitude on Renault. In fact, in an interview with Autosport, over the weekend, Max indicated that he consider crash-gate to be a more serious infraction than spy-gate. Under normal circumstances, the FIA’s hands would be tied by the precedent of the McLaren fine. I must note however, that the McLaren fine does not appear to have been based on McLaren’s guilt, fairness, justice or facts. Instead, it appeared to be based on Max’s petty vindictiveness towards Ron Dennis, a miscarriage of justice and by McLaren’s ability to pay.

The folly of that McLaren fine is further magnified by the FIA’s written decision. Here is the verdict of the WMSC: http://www.autosport.com/news/report.php/id/62348. In their official verdict the WMSC acknowledged that they could find no evidence that McLaren directly benefited from the Ferrari dossier. However, their findings appeared riddled with some highly irresponsible, irrational, and sweepingly speculative generalizations about possible indirect benefits.

Anyway, based on precedent, fairness, the severity of the infraction and consistency then Renault should be severely penalized; however, Max generally appears to play by his own rules so I will not be surprised if Renault is given a slap on the wrist.

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