FIA to investigate thoroughly McLaren-Mercedes 2008 car 

Written by David on October 31st, 2007 at 1:54 pmLast Update: October 31st, 2007 at 1:54 pm

Lewis HamiltonThe FIA will hire external experts as part of a thorough investigation of the 2008 McLaren-Mercedes car to ensure the vehicle does not incorporate Ferrari intellectual property, president Max Mosley said. McLaren were excluded from the 2007 Constructors’ Championship after their chief designer Mike Coughlan received confidential Ferrari information from Nigel Stepney.

The FIA’s World Motor Sport Council said in its verdict it will defer judgement on the team’s status in 2008 pending an investigation of their new car. And today Mosley warned that the governing body will make a thorough inspection of the car before the WMSC make their decision in December.

“That Ferrari data was in the hands of the chief designer at precisely the moment he was designing the 2008 McLaren,” Mosley told the BBC in an interview. “The difficulty we have is that you’re not going to find on the McLaren a part that was designed by Ferrari. Instead, what you may find are ideas. But at this level of technology and at this level of motorsport, if the idea is given to the chief designer, he will make a component utilising that idea, which bears no relation at all to the component perhaps being used by the other car. So we will be looking for the ideas. Finding something will not be easy. On the other hand, there are sources we are going to deploy who will give us as good a chance as it’s possible to have to find it.”

“The investigation will be thorough, it will use outside experts and we will do everything we possibly can to make sure that either of the McLarens has no element of Ferrari intellectual property in it. If it does, we will then have to consider taking some sort of action.” Mosley said, however, that McLaren would not necessarily be excluded from the championship again. “That would not necessarily be preventing them from running,” he said. “It would be more likely that they would be given a negative point allocation.” Mosley also told the British broadcaster he did not think the spying affair impacted negatively on the sport’s popularity. Describing the 2007 season as “very positive, on the whole”, Mosley then added: “although the behind-the-scenes stuff was annoying for us and the people concerned, for the public it really adds to the general interest.”

source: autosport

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