BAR have Nothing to Hide, Says Fry

BAR have nothing to hide and will not be distracted from their Formula One campaign by doubts about the legality of their car, team boss Nick Fry said on Tuesday

BAR have Nothing to Hide, Says Fry

"This team is owned by two blue-chip international corporations with huge integrity," he told Reuters on Tuesday. "Does anyone really think that we would deliberately do anything against the rules?

"We've hidden nothing."

Formula One's governing body, the FIA, has said it will appeal against the decision of race stewards to uphold Briton Jenson Button's third place in Sunday's San Marino Grand Prix.

The stewards inspected Button's car for six hours at Imola on Sunday, weighing it with and without fuel, before giving it the all-clear. The FIA's International Court of Appeal is due to hear the case in Paris next Wednesday.

The move prompted allegations that BAR, owned by British American Tobacco and Japanese carmaker Honda, might have used a second, concealed tank to retain fuel pumped into the car during the final pitstop.

This would allow the car to run light in the middle section of the race before returning to a legal weight.

Free Access

Fry said the stewards, who are appointed by the FIA but act independently of the governing body, had been given free access to all BAR's data on Sunday.

He denied the existence of any hidden tank and said the BAR 007, like all Formula One cars, runs on a high-pressure fuel system which needs a collecting device to run the pump.

"The FIA has seen the device and inspected it several times before," he said. "They are fully familiar with the system."

If BAR are found guilty then sanctions could range from Button being stripped of his third place to the team, runners-up last season, being thrown out of the Championship.

FIA president Max Mosley warned at a lunch with reporters in January that if anybody was caught "doing something that is clearly cheating, they will be out of the Championship".

Formula One is going through a period of deep division, with major manufacturers threatening to start their own rival series from 2008, and team bosses warned before the start of the season that they expected intense scrutineering and, potentially, race disqualifications.

"Given the political situation in the sport we are concerned about everything," said Fry.

"We are hanging on to the basic belief that right will prevail at the end. At no time was the car light and I don't think that we've done anything wrong.

"This is Formula One, the pinnacle of motor racing and it is very competitive. We're all aware of that, we're all big boys. If anyone is trying to destabilise us, that will not work," he added. "We're bigger than that."

BAR are due to test at the Mugello circuit in central Italy later this week. "We are not allowing this to divert us from our mission to win races," said Fry.

Button's podium, and Takuma Sato's fifth place, gave BAR their first points of the year and the team are expected to go well at the next race in Spain after Button recently smashed the circuit lap record in testing.

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