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Red Bull did not break curfew, says FIA

NEWS STORY
25/09/2011

Mat Coch writes:

All three teams which were yesterday found in breach of curfew regulations have had the ruling overturned.

On Saturday Red Bull, Mercedes and Virgin were all found to be in breach of the regulations, however, having further investigated the incidents the FIA has decided to overturn its original decision.

"Having questioned the person causing the breach of curfew in the Red Bull Racing team case and heard his explanations, it is now clear, that this person is not a team member of the Red Bull Racing team and is not in any way associated with the operation of the car," read one statement.

It was followed by another statement relating to Mercedes and Virgin: "Having spoken to the Mercedes GP Petronas F1 Team and Marussia Virgin Racing team in more details (sic), it is apparent that the team personnel concerned with the breach of the curfew were not involved in the operation of the car."

When asked to clarify, a spokesperson for Red Bull suggested that, while they were unaware of how the mistake happened, it was most likely a result of the way guest passes were used and recorded.

Curfew regulations were introduced as part of the Resource Restriction Agreement (RRA) which reduced the number of staff permissible at the circuit. Capped at 47 the regulation was aimed at ensuring the reduction in staff did not translate to extended hours at the circuit. Teams are allowed four exceptions during the season although there is no specified penalty should they exceed that number.

The FIA's statement effectively hands back one of those opportunities to all three teams.

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