F1: Sunday Times sued by FIA over column

By LJ Hutchins

CalendarFriday, December 7th, 2007


The FIA has announced that it intends to sue The Sunday Times newspaper over an accusation that it has behaved unfairly towards McLaren.

A statement issued after the World Motor Sport Council meeting in Monaco said the body had been given the go-ahead to make the legal move.

It added that the paper “ran an article claiming that the FIA was engaged in a witch-hunt against the McLaren-Mercedes team.”

The article in question is almost certainly this one by Martin Brundle – since it has recently acquired a sub-head reading ‘subject of a legal complaint’.

2 responses to “F1: Sunday Times sued by FIA over column”:

  1. Lee Says:

    October 13th, 2009 at 12:39 pm

    I know this is an old story now, but does anyone know what happened to the legal action? The offending article is still online but the legal message has been removed. Did The Times pay up, did they win the case or did the FIA withdraw?

  2. LJH Says:

    October 13th, 2009 at 12:51 pm

    We’ve got no specific knowledge of how this case panned out. But we can offer you a general observation on the way libel cases are often handled which might be helpful.

    Because of the huge sums of money on the table in legal fees, lawyers handling libel cases will often work simply to minimise the exposure of their client to massive financial risk. This is regardless of the moral rights and wrongs of the case.

    This leads in turn to money changing hands behind the scenes in a settlement deal, sometimes with a clause stating that a client does not admit liability, guilt, responsibility, whatever is appropriate. And there’s often a gagging clause preventing it from being publicly discussed too.

    Again, we have to say that we don’t know what happened in this specific case nor have any way of finding out if the parties involved don’t choose to make it public. So a settlement is one possibility. The FIA simply backing down is another, given that the article remains accessible. More than that we’ll probably never know.

  • McLaren eshop

    McLaren store

  • F1 gear (and more) at OnPole.com

    2012 F1 Merchandise from OnPole.com