McLaren suspends its Sports Director over Hamilton lie row

April 3rd, 2009 - 5:45 pm ICT by ANI  

London, Apr.3 (ANI): McLaren have suspended Sports Director Dave Ryan following yesterday’s disqualification of Lewis Hamilton by race stewards from the Australian Formula One Grand Prix.

Team principal Martin Whitmarsh has suspended Ryan with immediate effect.

Ryan was the team member who attended a stewards’ hearing - along with Hamilton - following Sunday’s race, and was subsequently found to have lied in a bid to see the reigning world champion claim third.

Whitmarsh was forced to take action after being left shamefaced by yesterday’s drama at the Sepang circuit in Malaysia, reports The Independent.

Whitmarsh said: “In my 20 odd years working for McLaren, I doubt if I’ve met a more dedicated individual than Davey. He’s been an integral part of McLaren since 1974 and has played a crucial role in the team’s many world championship successes since that time.”

“However, his role in the events of last Sunday, particularly his dealings with the FIA stewards, has caused serious repercussions for the team, for which we apologise. Therefore, I suspended him this morning and he has accepted this.”

Hamilton was excluded from the classification of the race at Melbourne’s Albert Park after “deliberately misleading” stewards in their investigation into an incident towards the end of the race.

Hamilton was elevated from fourth to third by the stewards due to Jarno Trulli being handed a 25-second penalty for passing the reigning world champion behind the safety car late on.

But in the light of further evidence, notably radio transmissions between Hamilton and the pit wall, and in an interview given by the 24-year-old soon after race, he and Ryan were discovered to have lied. (ANI)

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