McLaren Dismiss Doubts Over Races Validity

McLaren have dismissed a suggestion that a dispute with Formula One's governing body could see the first three races of the season called into question.

McLaren Dismiss Doubts Over Races Validity

McLaren have dismissed a suggestion that a dispute with Formula One's governing body could see the first three races of the season called into question.

"It has little or any credibility," said team boss Ron Dennis, whose drivers won the first two races, of the speculation.

Britain's Autosport magazine reported last week that the legality of the opening races could be challenged if arbitration brought by McLaren and Williams against the International Automobile Federation (FIA) was successful.

While team bosses approved 2003's controversial new regulations at the last race at Imola, that was only the fourth round of the Championship. McLaren and Williams are meanwhile challenging the way in which the rules, including single-lap qualifying, were introduced by the FIA.

The arbitration process is expected to take at least a year but Dennis said at Sunday's Spanish Grand Prix that the action was likely to be overtaken by events.

"We fully acknowledged that we were going to be bound by the regulations that were in force when we raced, as did Williams," he said. "I don't think there is anybody that seriously feels that the outcome to the arbitration will have any impact on the first races.

"Having said that, I am very optimistic that it will all become immaterial as we move closer and closer to a very clear understanding of what the regulations will be through to 2007. If those regulations fit with what is best for Formula One then the arbitration will became obviously immaterial and fall away."

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