Team Bosses Welcome FIA Decision

Formula One team bosses welcomed the governing body's decision to formally cancel guilty verdicts made against the seven Michelin teams after the US Grand Prix tyre fiasco

Team Bosses Welcome FIA Decision

The FIA said in a statement on Friday that its World Motor Sport Council had voted overwhelmingly to wipe the slate clean after examining new evidence.

"I think it was great and really the teams did a very good job and now the FIA understands it was a Michelin issue, not at all to the team, said Renault boss Flavio Briatore in Germany.

"And I want to say Ron Dennis did a great job for everyone because he negotiated with Max, with the teams and the result was the teams were not guilty.

"We did not race in Indianapolis and now we know why we did not race, because it was unsafe for the drivers and that was the reason. We were not racing for that reason only. I am very happy about that."

The June 19 race at Indianapolis turned into a fiasco after just six cars started. The Michelin teams - Championship leaders Renault, McLaren, Williams, Toyota, BAR, Sauber and Red Bull - withdrew because of tyre safety concerns.

The seven were cleared of three charges but found guilty at a hearing in Paris on June 29 of failing to ensure they were in possession of suitable tyres and wrongfully refusing to allow their cars to start the race.

The cancellation of the verdict was a formality after the FIA senate recommended last week to annul the verdicts after McLaren boss Ron Dennis and Red Bull's sporting director Christian Horner presented new evidence during a meeting with the FIA.

"I think catalyst and ambassador is a new experience for me," said Dennis, "but I was very happy with the outcome and I think that the interests of Formula One was the outcome and the reason why ultimately the decision was arrived at that the teams were clearly not guilty of the remaining two offences.

"I think it is better for everybody. Nobody came out of Indianapolis with anything positive and perpetuating the negatives was clearly not constructive to Formula One. I am delighted that the Senate and the World Council have held that way too."

Minardi boss Paul Stoddart added: "It is good for Formula One. The most important thing out of all of this is that Formula One is a sport and we need to get on with the sport.

"It was the right decision and I am glad it was made now and not later in September and hopefully we can put that chapter of Formula One behind us and move on."

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