The controversy that started at the Australian Grand Prix refuses to die down. It seems McLaren is headed for more trouble including expulsion like in the infamous Stepney-gate spy scandal in which they were excluded from the championship for having in possession secret Ferrari F1 data.
It is alleged that at the post race hearing of the Austalian Grand Prix, David Ryan had asked Lewis Hamilton to slow down to let Jarno Trulli pass him. Initially it was thought that the Toyota had committed an offence. Trulli was handed a penalty after the stewards heard Lewis’s testimony. However audio evidence later proved that Lewis Hamilton had lied and hidden important data from stewards just to gain one point more. He was disqualified and McLaren were excluded from Race results.
The statement released by FIA read :
“Vodafone McLaren Mercedes has been invited to appear before an extraordinary meeting of the FIA World Motor Sport Council in Paris on Wednesday, 29 April, 2009, to answer charges that, in breach of Article 151c of the International Sporting Code, it
– on 29 March, 2009, told the stewards of the Australian Grand Prix that no instructions were given to Hamilton in Car No. 1 to allow Trulli in Car no. 9 to pass when both cars were behind the safety car, knowing this statement to be untrue;
– procured its driver Hamilton the current World Champion, to support and confirm this untrue statement to the stewards;
– although knowing that as a direct result of its untrue statement to the stewards, another driver and a rival team had been unfairly penalised, made no attempt to rectify the situation either by contacting the FIA or otherwise;
– on 2 April, 2009, at a second hearing before the stewards of the Australian Grand Prix, (meeting in Malaysia) made no attempt to correct the untrue statement of 29 March but, on the contrary, continued to maintain that the statement was true, despite being allowed to listen to a recording of the team instructing Hamilton to let Trulli past and despite being given more than one opportunity to correct its false statement;
– on 2 April, 2009, at the second stewards’ hearing, procured its driver Hamilton to continue to assert the truth of the false statement given to the stewards on 29 March, while knowing that what he was saying to the stewards was not true.”
In response McLaren released the following press statement on its Media website :
McLaren acknowledges receipt of an invitation to appear at an FIA World Motor Sport Council meeting in Paris on April 29, received this afternoon.
We undertake to co-operate fully with all WMSC processes, and welcome the opportunity to work with the FIA in the best interests of Formula 1.
This afternoon McLaren and its former sporting director, Dave Ryan, have formally parted company. As a result, he is no longer an employee of any of the constituent companies of the McLaren Group.