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Sauber dismisses talk of Ferrari conspiracy

NEWS STORY
25/03/2012

Peter Sauber has dismissed talk that his team instructed Sergio Perez to ease off in the final stages of the Malaysian Grand Prix in order to hand victory to its engine supplier, Ferrari.

Even as the Mexican was advised to "be careful" and told that the Swiss team needed the position, conspiracy theorists were pointing to the fact that the Sauber C31 is powered by Ferrari, whose own driver, Fernando Alonso was just 2.3s ahead and being reeled in at a considerable rate of knots. When the Mexican youngster subsequently ran wide, thereby handing his Spanish rival a 5s comfort cushion, the rumour mill went into overdrive.

However, speaking after today's race, Peter Sauber, his eyes still red after shedding tears of joy following his team's monumental result, was adamant, there were no orders, no conspiracy, no skulduggery.

Asked about the original instruction, the Swiss said: "He meant that we needed the result. It's a misunderstanding. It was because behind us, all the midfield teams, our main competitors, scored points. So it was important we kept the result."

Asked whether Perez had effectively been told to end his pursuit of Alonso, Sauber said: "No. We told him 'be careful we needed the result'."

When asked if there had been any contact with Ferrari, he was adamant: "No, one-hundred percent, no," he snapped. "One-hundred percent nothing. We had no discussion about Checo nor the position."

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