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Former Renault Formula One leads Flavio Briatore and Pat Symonds

It looks like 2010 is starting off as a better year for Flavio Briatore. According to Planet F1, a French court has overturned the lifetime ban on the former Renault Formula One head honcho, along with alleged co-conspirator Pat Symonds. As you no doubt recall if you're still reading this, back in September, the Fédération Internationale de l'Automobile found the pair guilty in the so-called "Crashgate" conspiracy involving driver Nelson Piquet, Jr. of Renault F1. Nelsinho was allegedly told to crash on purpose to protect a win for teammate Fernando Alonso in the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix.

The FIA had found the pair guilty, doling out a lifetime ban for Briatore and a five-year ban for Pat Symonds, then director of engineering. Although Briatore had threatened legal action against Piquet and his manager-father in the wake of the ruling, the only legal action he ended up taking was to file an appeal with the Tribunal de Grande Instance in Paris. The TGI has sided with Flavio claiming the FIA's sanction "was illegal." Besides overturning their bans, the court also awarded the pair damages, although the amount was small compared to what the pair was seeking. It remains unclear as to if, when, or where the duo will make their returns to racing series, but knowing Briatore, we'll all know as soon as he decides. Thanks for the tips, everyone!

[Source: Planet F1 | Image: Paul Gilham/Getty]


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 11 Comments
      • 5 Years Ago
      Money rules the world... im sure the Judge had a little pocket money.
      • 5 Years Ago
      What should we listen to the French's order when their cultural minister flies to Thailand to eff young boys? http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/8296578.stm
        • 5 Years Ago
        Ask Bill Clinton about those things, he should know all about it.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I'm glad he's back, although we'll see to what extent. He was one of the few that really couterbalanced Ecclestone and his lap dog Mosley (Thank God he's gone, we'll see what Todt will do) when they try to implement the most ridiculous new rules in F1, such as a single engine manufacturer.
      Now, I'm not excusing his behaviour in the "crashgate", which was shameful, but, guys, team orders have been around forever (Schumacher comes to mind several times), McLaren steals trade secrets from Ferrari and only gets a slap on the wrist and Senna ran Prost off the road on purpose (Prost would then go on to return the favor). There are plenty more examples, but you get the dynamics.
      The real reason for his total banning (rather than just the ususal fine) was that he was one of the few threatening Eccle's world domination.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Its guys like these that are so loaded they can do what they want.
      Forumula1 is just a social club for guy like Flavio.
      They also make a sport like F1 less credible and clearly corrupt.
      • 5 Years Ago
      I think this is crappy because he is suing the Piquet family now. What an idiot. He should just let it go. We know his involvement.
      Craig
      • 5 Years Ago
      F1 racing now has about the same integrity as professional wrestling. Also nice to see Symonds drinking a Crystal Springs water, the products of corruptin should always be pictured together.
      • 5 Years Ago
      Good job Flavio! I'm happy even if all this serves to do is piss Max Mosely off. There was always something wrong with the way this situation was handled: how can you ban someone for life, all the while granting the accuser (and co-conspirator) full immunity, while refusing to name other so called witnesses?
      • 5 Years Ago
      This is all fine and all, but when does he get re-tried for endangering peoples' lives? Are we supposed to lose sight of what he actually did, in favor of childish in-fighting in F1, and legal technicalities? If he didn't receive a fair hearing, then let's get on with it and give him one.