Mosley slams McLaren boss's race-fixing claims

Max Mosley has lashed out at McLaren boss Ron Dennis for suggesting Grand Prix racing is fixed

Mosley slams McLaren boss's race-fixing claims

The president of the FIA, motorsport's governing body, said Dennis's outburst against the FIA before the crucial Japanese Grand Prix two weeks ago could be seen as an attempt to intimidate officials and was damaging to the sport.

For the second time in three races Mosley told Dennis, head of one of the sport's most prolific teams, that he was free to start his own championship if he did not like the way Formula 1 is run by the FIA.

Earlier this year Dennis was one of a group of team bosses who tried to unseat Mosley as head of the sport's governing body.

Dennis criticised the FIA before the championship decider in Suzuka for appointing Italian lawyer Roberto Causo as a steward when he had acted for rivals Ferrari through their national governing body in 1999 on their appeal from exclusion from the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Dennis also said he did not believe McLaren and Ferrari were competing on a level playing field.

The attack was triggered by FIA race director Charlie Whiting, who warned drivers they would face a ban if they interfered with the title battle between Mika Hakkinen and Michael Schumacher.

The ruling was seen as preventing McLaren from using Hakkinen's teammate David Coulthard in a team strategy to block Schumacher and increase Hakkinen's slim chances of victory when he was trailing the German by eight points.

In a scathing letter to Dennis which was released to the media just before qualifying for the Malaysian Grand Prix Mosley said: " You do a lot of damage when, as a team principal, you constantly suggest that the Formula 1 World Championship is not properly or fairly run.

"Although I am sure you would not intend such a thing, your actions might also be seen as an attempt to intimidate our officials, something which is a recognised problem in other sports."

Mosley defended Causo and said Dennis' accusations that he could be biased were "very insulting" and hoped Dennis would consider issuing an apology.

Mosley said Whiting's warning to the drivers was an attempt to take the heat out of a "highly charged atmosphere".

"Instead of attacking the FIA you should be grateful that you have a governing body which attempts to prevent difficulties arising rather than try to deal with then when it is too late," blasted Mosley. "If you think you can do better you can (as I have already suggested to you) start your own series with your own sporting and technical rules. You
could appoint your own stewards and have your own procedures for resolving disputes.

"As long as you meet safety rules the FIA would be happy to sanction you [to race in the series]," he added.

"What you should not do, however, is enter our championship, on whose rule-making body you sit and whose regulations and procedures have been known to you for more than 30 years, and then undermine it by constantly complaining to anyone in the media who will listen."

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