Crashgate boss Flavio Briatore facing life ban

UPDATE This rumor is now upgraded to 'fact.' Flavio Briatore has in effect been banned indefinitely from all FIA-sanctioned motorsport.

The World Motor Sport Council said that “for an unlimited period, the FIA does not intend to sanction any International Event, Championship, Cup, Trophy, Challenge or Series involving Mr. Briatore in any capacity whatsoever, or grant any license to any Team or other entity engaging Mr. Briatore in any capacity whatsoever. It also hereby instructs all officials present at FIA-sanctioned events not to permit Mr. Briatore access to any areas under the FIA’s jurisdiction. Furthermore, it does not intend to renew any Superlicense granted to any driver who is associated (through a management contract or otherwise) with Mr. Briatore, or any entity or individual associated with Mr. Briatore. In determining that such instructions should be applicable for an unlimited period, the World Motor Sport Council has had regard not only to the severity of the breach in which Mr. Briatore was complicit but also to his actions in continuing to deny his participation in the breach despite all the evidence".

Flavio Briatore has in effect been banned indefinitely from all FIA-sanctioned motorsport. This will be a blow to the Italian and it means that he will almost certainly now come under scrutiny from the British soccer authorities which have rules about people who are allowed to be owners of teams in the Premier League. This is believed to include a clause which excludes those who have been banned by other sporting federations. In addition to this the FIA says that will not renew any Superlicense granted to any driver who is associated (through a management contract or otherwise) with Briatore, or any entity or individual associated with Briatore." Pat Symonds, the team's former executive director of engineering, has received a five-year ban for his part in the scandal. However, Fernando Alonso, who won the race after benefiting from the safety car period the crash brought about, was cleared of any involvement.

Although the FIA admitted the "unparalleled severity" of the incident merited permanent disqualification, it instead suspended the punishment after taking into consideration the steps taken by Renault "to identify and address the failings within its team and condemn the actions of the individuals involved".

"We apologized in front of the World Motor Sport Council," Renault F1 president Bernard Rey said after the 90-minute hearing, held in Paris. "We took full responsibility and we hope that we will enjoy better days in the future."

09/21/09 Flavio Briatore could be banned from motorsport for life in today's Crashgate hearing in Paris into the Singapore race-fix.

The 59-year-old Italian quit Renault last Wednesday – claiming it was for the good of the team on the day his defense was supposed to be submitted. The FIA has evidence not only about his role leading up to the fix of the sport's first night race, but his actions as a driver-manager in which he described the worldwide superstars as "pawns". Briatore, who denies involvement, faces not only a ban from Formula 1 but being barred from motor sport activities in general, including managing drivers.

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