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Force India not yet expelled from FOTA UPDATE (GMM)  Late on Sunday, it was finally confirmed that Force India has joined Williams in being suspended by the formula one teams association FOTA.

We reported earlier that team owner Vijay Mallya broke ranks and lodged an unconditional entry for the 2010 world championship for fear that "bank guarantees" may be jeopardized.

The Indian billionaire told Reuters that he explained the reason to FOTA chiefs, and even provided written supporting evidence, but the body elected to proceed with the suspension.

He hopes FOTA will now reconsider the decision.

"If they appreciate it (the reasons), well and good.  If they don't appreciate it, why should I lose sleep over it?" Mallya said.

"I am doing what is good for Force India, first because I have a duty to comply with my legal obligations, I have a duty to my employees, to the team and the company, and at the end of the day if it stops racing there is no business," he added.

06/07/09 (GMM) Force India's drivers were not invited to the FOTA meeting on Sunday, but boss Vijay Mallya says his team has not yet been formally suspended by the group.

Williams were expelled from the teams' body after signing up unconditionally to the 2010 world championship, and it emerged that Force India lodged similar paperwork prior to the Turkish GP weekend.

"At this stage I can't say anything," the Indian billionaire told Auto Motor und Sport when asked if FOTA has suspended Force India. "I haven't talked with FOTA yet."

Mallya said he was obliged to enter the FIA championship upon advice from the team's lawyers, with "bank guarantees" needing to be secured against definite revenue.

The carmakers have signed a $50m pledge to stay united under the FOTA banner, and Ross Brawn said his Brackley based team is remaining loyal.

"I owe the existence of this team to FOTA. Without the help of McLaren and Mercedes, we would not be here," he said.

But Brawn expressed anxiety at the ongoing conflict with the FIA, insisting that the uncertainty is making negotiations with sponsors "impossible".

"What can you say to people who are interested, if no one knows what is going to happen next?" he said.
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