SEPTEMBER 7, 2007
The FIA letter revealed
The letter sent by the FIA to the F1 teams has now come to light. This reveals that the federation is indeed focussing on the McLaren drivers.
"As you will be aware, the FIA has recently investigated whether, how and to what extent McLaren was in possession of confidential Ferrari technical information," the letter says. "The FIA has subsequently been made aware of an allegation that one or more McLaren drivers may be in possession, or that such drivers have recently been in possession, of written evidence relevant to this investigation. In the interests of the sport and the Championship, it is important that the FIA, as the regulator, established unequivocally and rapidly whether this allegation has any basis in fact. The FIA therefore formally requests that you produce any documents which involve, relate to or were sent by or to any McLaren driver which may be in your possession or power of procurement and which may be relevant to this case. For these purposes,"documents" includes all written material such as e-mails, letters, electronic communications, text messages, notes, memoranda, drawings, diagrams, data or other material stored in any physical "hard copy" or electronic form.
"In particular (though without limiting the generality of this request) the FIA wishes to receive copies of any electronic communications (howsoever conveyed or stored) which may be relevant to this case and which make reference to Ferrari, Nigel Stepney or any technical or other information coming from, or connected with, either Ferrari or Mr Stepney. In the event that you are aware of the previous existence of any document falling within the above description and are not in a position to produce it, please describe the content of the document in question, the circumstances under which it came to your knowledge and the reasons why you are unable to produce it.
"In the event that you are unsure as to whether any document falls within the above description, kindly submit it (or a description of it) and the FIA will assist in making a determination. You will appreciate that there is a duty on all of those involved in our sport to ensure the fairness and legitimacy of the Formula 1 World Championship. It is therefore imperative that if do you have any such information, you make it available to us as soon as possible.
"We look forward to hearing from you at your earliest convenience. Thank you very much for your cooperation."
We understand that the three McLaren drivers also received slightly amended versions of the same letter.
The important point is not however the FIA request but rather the responses that were received and these will only become available after the World Council meeting next week - if at all.