Spy row takes a further sour twist


The spy saga has taken a further, rather sour, twist this afternoon after FIA President essentially accused Ron Dennis of lying and polluting the World Championship.

Speaking to British broadcaster ITV ahead of today's qualifying session, Mosley described the phone call that Ron Dennis made to him on the morning of the Hungarian GP - the phone call that the McLaren boss is said to have made as a result of being given an ultimatum by Fernando Alonso

"On the morning of the Hungarian Grand Prix, Ron rang me and said, 'I've just had Alonso in the motorhome and he says he's got information and he's threatening to give it to the Federation'," said Mosley. "So I said, 'What did you say Ron?' and he said, 'I said, go on and hand it over.'

"I said, 'Ron, you said exactly the right thing.' And then Ron said, 'But there isn't any information.' So I said, 'So it's an empty threat?' and he replied: 'Yes, a completely empty threat. There is no information, there is nothing to come out. I can assure you that if there was something I would have told you.'

"Now this was a week after looking me in the eye at the World Council and telling me there was absolutely nothing wrong and everybody had done exactly as they should do, so I believed him," Mosley continued. "I've known Ron for forty years, it's very difficult for me when somebody I've known for 40 years looks me in the eye and says, 'Max, I'm telling the truth with complete sincerity'. You believe him.

"It was only when I got the list from the Italian police; 323 SMS phone calls over a three-month period between Coughlan and Stepney, there had to be more to this.

"You don't get 300 messages arranging a visit to Honda," he continued. "This is something serious. At which point, I sat down and wrote the letter to the drivers, and the rest is history."

Made aware of Mosley's comments Dennis was quick to respond.

"I was a little surprised by what Max said," Dennis told ITV. "I am working hard to get closure on a very unpleasant experience that McLaren has had.

"I don't want to get into the details, but I do want to address one thing and that is that when someone asks me a question - and I've answered some difficult questions - at the time I made those answers I told the complete truth, the complete truth.

"At the point of the first hearing, when I was asked the question did I know anything more, the truth was, I didn't. The emails that passed between our drivers were as big a surprise to me when I heard, as anybody else, and as I said, if they existed, what I said to Fernando was that he must give them to the FIA.

I just want to be very clear that at no stage did I ever say any lie to anybody," he added. "I put my integrity above everything, above this sport, and certainly above Formula One. I just want to be very clear about that particular point."

Article from Pitpass (http://www.pitpass.com):

Published: 15/09/2007
Copyright © Pitpass 2002 - 2022. All rights reserved.