McLaren’s appeal against the result of the Brazilian Grand Prix has been rejected by the FIA.
The sport’s International Court of Appeal has ruled that the team’s protest against the decision of race stewards not to punish the Sauber and Williams teams at the Brazilian Grand Prix was inadmissible.
This would appear to indicate that the court agreed with arguments put forward by the Williams and BMW Sauber lawyers who argued McLaren’s appeal should be thrown out because the team had not been an interested party in the stewards’ initial inquiry and had not appealed against the race classification immediately after the event.
The FIA’s statement reads as follows:
“The FIA International Court of Appeal met in London on Thursday, November 15, 2007, to examine an appeal lodged by the Motor Sports Association (MSA) on behalf of its licence-holder Vodafone McLaren Mercedes against the decision (document 41) of the Panel of the Stewards of the 2007 Brazilian Grand Prix dated 21 October 2007 and counting towards the 2007 FIA Formula One World Championship.
“Following a report from the Technical Delegate indicating that the temperature of fuel pumped into the cars No 9 — Nick Heidfeld, No 10 — Robert Kubica, No 16 — Nico Rosberg and No 17 — Kazuki Nakajima, was more than 10 degrees centigrade below ambient temperature, the Stewards of the Meeting met to consider whether a penalty should be imposed.
“Having heard the evidence they decided not to impose a penalty as they had sufficient doubt as to both the temperature of the fuel on board the car and to the true ambient temperature.
“Having heard the explanations of both parties and having examined the various documents and other evidence, the Court decided that the appeal lodged by Vodafone McLaren Mercedes is inadmissible.”
The big outstanding questions are, of course, why did it take them two days to come to this rather straightforward conclusion? And why release the news at 8pm on a Friday evening?