Hamilton's McLaren team handed suspended F1 race ban

PUBLISHED: 15:31 29 April 2009 | UPDATED: 22:17 26 October 2009

Lewis Hamilton [Pictures courtesy of www.mclaren.com]

Lewis Hamilton [Pictures courtesy of www.mclaren.com]

LEWIS Hamilton s McLaren team has escaped with a suspended race ban following the Liargate affair. The Formula 1 world champion from Tewin and McLaren officials were charged with breaking the sport s code of conduct after giving untrue statements to rac

Martin Whitmarsh and Lewis Hamilton

LEWIS Hamilton's McLaren team has escaped with a suspended race ban following the "Liargate" affair.

The Formula 1 world champion from Tewin and McLaren officials were charged with breaking the sport's code of conduct after giving untrue statements to race stewards earlier in the season.

A hearing of the FIA World Motor Sport Council in Paris this morning (Wednesday) punished the Woking-based outfit with a suspended three-race ban for events that took place in Australia and Malaysia.

This means Hamilton can race in Spain on May 10 and Monte Carlo a fortnight later at the Monaco Grand Prix.

McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh

The FIA World Motor Sport Council members heard from McLaren team principal Martin Whitmarsh and praised the "open and honest" way in which he addressed the hearing.

The statement concluded: "The penalty is a suspension of the team from three races of the FIA Formula 1 World Championship.

"This will only be applied if further facts emerge regarding the case or if, in the next 12 months, there is a further breach by the team of Article 151c of the International Sporting Code."

McLaren Racing described it as a "very fair hearing".

A statement from the team said: "We now look forward with enthusiasm to continuing our efforts to develop a closer and more co-operative relationship between ourselves and the FIA."

Martin Whitmarsh admitted McLaren had done things wrong after the Australian race when Hamilton and sporting director Dave Ryan gave evidence to stewards.

He said: "We are aware that we made serious mistakes in Australia and Malaysia, and I was therefore very glad to be able to apologise for those mistakes once again.

"I was also pleased to be able to assure the FIA World Motor Sport Council members that we had taken appropriate action with a view to ensuring that such mistakes do not occur again."

The next race is the Spanish Grand Prix on May 10.


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