FIA threatens Australian racing
Formula One's governing body, the FIA, issued a harsh statement today, threatening to withdraw all international motor racing events from Australia following a court injunction that was issued yesterday against the sanctioning body.

The Victorian Supreme Court yesterday issued an injunction at the request of Minardi's boss, Paul Stoddart, who requested to run his 2004 cars in the season opening event but was disqualified by the race stewards.

Stoddart had stopped his legal proceedings today, but the FIA said the injunction could lead to graver ramifications.

"Yesterday a judge in Melbourne issued an injunction ordering that two cars be allowed to run in Saturday's practice sessions not withstanding that they did not comply with the regulations for the 2005 FIA Formula One World Championship," the statement said.

"The stewards of the Australian Grand Prix and the FIA were given no notice of these proceedings and were given no opportunity to be present when the judge heard the case.

"Apparently the judge thought it right to interfere with the running of a major sporting event, over-rule the duly appointed international officials and compel the governing body to allow cars to participate in breach of the international regulations, all this without first hearing both sides of the case.

"If Australian laws and procedures do indeed allow a judge to act in this way, it will be for the World Motorsport Council to decide if a World Championship motorsport event of any kind can ever again be held in Australia."

The Australian Grand Prix has been a permanent and popular fixture on the Formula One calendar since 1986, and Melbourne has hosted the opening race of the year for the past ten seasons.


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FIA Casts Doubt on Future of Australian GP

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Series Formula 1
Author Will Gray
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