OCTOBER 12, 2002
Stoddart confirms big team attack
Paul Stoddart the boss of the Minardi team has confirmed that four teams have taken steps to challenge Minardi's right to the benefit monies from Prost Grand Prix. The money was given to the team in the midseason after FIA President Max Mosley instructed Bernie Ecclestone to pay the money to Minardi. At the time Mosley said that if there was a challenge to the decision it would have to be made through the International Chamber of Commerce in Lausanne. Williams, McLaren, Jordan and BAR have now given notice that they intend to commence arbitration proceedings against FOM. FOM says that if the arbitration panel rules in favor of the other teams the money must be repaid. Stoddart says that he cannot afford to get into the arbitration process and says that if he loses the team is going to go out of business anyway and says that he thinks it is a "public relations disaster" for F1's big teams to be seen to attacking a small team at a time when the sport needs to be working together to solve problems.
Now that the issue is in the public domain it remains to be seen whether the four teams will push ahead as they are not being cast in a favorable light.
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