Ferrari: spy case legal action to continue
|By Jonathan Noble||Thursday, December 13th 2007, 21:17 GMT|
Ferrari are ready to accept a move by the FIA to bring the McLaren spy saga to an imminent close, following an apology from the British team today, but have made it clear they will still press ahead with ongoing court action.
McLaren on Thursday published a letter of apology from F1 CEO Martin Whitmarsh to FIA president Max Mosley written last week, in which the Woking-based outfit said they were sorry for not realising the extent to which Ferrari information had manifested itself inside their organisation.
Furthermore, the team offered to freeze development of parts on their 2008 car which the FIA felt had been influenced by confidential Ferrari information that the team had in their hands.
The apology and offer of development freeze were enough for the FIA to state this evening that it would now push the World Motor Sport Council to cancel a hearing planned for February to examine the team's 2008 car plans.
Should that be accepted, then the spy matter will have a line drawn underneath it.
In response to the events, Ferrari issued a statement tonight saying they would respect the FIA's decision to take such a course of action, but made it clear they had no plans to halt legal action that is ongoing in Britain and Italy.
"Ferrari notes the apology offered today by the McLaren Group, following the investigations carried out by the FIA Technical Department, as presented to the WSMC on 7th December last," said the statement.
"The written and verbal statements issued by senior McLaren personnel both at the World Council meetings of the 26th July and 13th September and through the media have thus been publicly proved wrong.
"Therefore it is admitted that confidential information which was the property of Ferrari was disseminated within the structure of the English team and this also confirms the seriousness of the behaviour of those involved over the past few months.
"In the light of McLaren's apology and the guarantees it has presented, Ferrari respects the proposal of the FIA President to cancel the extraordinary general meeting of the WSMC scheduled for 14th February coming, thus bringing this incident to a close from a sporting point of view. However, it is confirmed that criminal actions underway in Italy and civil ones in England are still continuing."