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DATE News (chronologically)
04/03/09
f1
Alonso, Bernie, rub salt into McLaren's wounds
(GMM)  Fernando Alonso and Bernie Ecclestone have added salt to McLaren and Lewis Hamilton's open wounds.

Amid the Watergate-like scandal surrounding an initially innocuous stewards inquiry in Australia, Spaniard Alonso at Sepang said he encountered the British team's lying when he raced for McLaren alongside Hamilton in 2007.

Asked if the affair reminds him of Hungary 2007, when he and Hamilton were locked in a controversy over a qualifying pitlane incident, he answered: "Of course it reminds me of 2007.

"This is not the first time they have been to the stewards, it is not the first time they have lied to the stewards, so sooner or later they had to be caught and punished," Alonso, 27, is quoted as saying by Diario AS.

Germany's Bild newspaper made light of the saga by publishing a photo of Hamilton with a photo-shopped Pinocchio-style nose, above the headline 'The lying champion'.

Bernie Ecclestone told the SID news agency he could not believe Dave Ryan had been suspended, admitting he suspects the McLaren veteran is a "scapegoat".

"Dave Ryan is only an employee.  Does he act on his own?" the F1 chief executive is quoted as saying.

David Coulthard told Bild that controversial episodes like this often mark out the differences between good drivers and great ones.

"There are always the drivers who see things only for themselves," the Red Bull advisor and TV pundit said.  "Ayrton Senna was one, Michael Schumacher as well, and Lewis is probably made the same way."

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