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MARCH 21, 2003

F1 bosses speak out on arbitration case

Jaguar Racing's John Hogan has spoken out on his views about McLaren and Williams going to arbitration over the recent reinterpretation of the Formula 1 rules. Hogan is new to his role in F1 but has 30 years of experience as a Formula 1 fixer when he was in charge of Marlboro's F1 programme.

"At the end of the day," Hogan said, "it is a sport and arbitration has nothing to do with sport. I respect them for what they are trying to do but it isn't smart."

Hogan's views were echoed by both Flavio Briatore and David Richards.

"I respect Frank and Ron's views as very sincere in the way they put this forward," said Richards. "I don't share them but they are doing it for their own valid reasons but I just feel it was unnecessary to bring it out into the public domain a week or 10 days before the start of the season when everything was looking so positive and there was such a positive momentum behind the championship at that time."

Briatore said: "I think F1 needs to talk about sport and not arbitration. It's not nice. It's not good. It doesn't bring good to us. We have so many controversial issues and we need to talk about these and you need to make sure that the people who are watching the races are enjoying watching the races."