Four F1 teams sue for Minardi's Prost payout

Four F1 teams - BAR, Jordan Grand Prix, McLaren International and WilliamsF1 - are reported to be initiating litigation in a bid to secure shares in the Prost Grand Prix benefit money that was paid earlier this year to Minardi. The four companies intend to start arbitration proceedings against Formula One Management in the International Chamber of Commerce in Lausanne, Switzerland

Four F1 teams sue for Minardi's Prost payout

Following the failure of Alain Prost's company in France, its share of FOM's 2002 TV and travel/transportation fund became the subject of a protracted dispute. Most of the teams wanted it distributed throughout the grid, but Minardi, which had finished immediately below Prost in the 2001 Constructors championship, made a case claiming all the money. Eventually it was paid to Minardi by Bernie Ecclestone's company, on the personal instructions of FIA president Max Mosley.

Minardi principal Paul Stoddart confirmed in Japan on Saturday that, if the arbitration panel was to rule in favour of the other teams, he would have to repay the money, and that his Anglo-Italian team would be likely itself to go out of business.

However McLaren CEO Ron Dennis has suggested that the teams' main intention with the actions is to force a clarification of the rules.

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