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Last Updated: Friday, 22 July 2005, 14:06 GMT 15:06 UK
Michelin teams exonerated on Indy
David Coulthard in a Red Bull Formula One car
Red Bull were one of the teams originally found guilty
The seven teams who refused to race at the US Grand Prix in a row over tyres have had their guilty verdicts for bringing F1 into disrepute overturned.

The teams, all supplied by Michelin, had been found guilty of two charges.

But a statement from Formula One's governing body the FIA said its World Motor Sport Council had voted "overwhelmingly" to clear all seven.

The decision appears to be the result of evidence that they could have faced criminal proceedings if they had raced.

The FIA statement said: "Having examined new evidence, the FIA World Motor Sport Council has voted overwhelmingly to accept the recommendation of the FIA Senate regarding events at the 2005 United States Grand Prix.

Nobody came out of Indianapolis with anything positive and perpetuating the negatives was clearly not constructive
McLaren team boss
Ron Dennis
"The guilty verdicts of 29 June made against the seven Michelin teams have therefore been cancelled."

The teams involved were Renault, McLaren, Toyota, Williams, Red Bull, Sauber and BAR.

They were found guilty of failing to ensure they had suitable tyres and wrongfully refusing to start the race at last month's US Grand Prix.

The Michelin-equipped teams withdrew after the formation lap at Indianapolis because the French company said it could not guarantee the safety of the tyres through the final high-speed banked corner.

Following the guilty verdict, McLaren team boss Ron Dennis and Red Bull counterpart Christian Horner met president Max Mosley and the FIA senate.

They argued that by racing, they would have contravened an Indiana law stating that it is an offence to knowingly put others at risk, even if no accident occurs.

"Nobody came out of Indianapolis with anything positive and perpetuating the negatives was clearly not constructive to Formula One," said Dennis.

"I am delighted that the senate and the world council have held that way too."

Minardi boss Paul Stoddart, whose Bridgestone-equipped team did take part in the race, said the verdict was good for everyone.

"The most important thing out of all of this is that Formula One is a sport and we need to get on with the sport," he said.

"It was the right decision and I am glad it was made now. Hopefully we can put that chapter of Formula One behind us and move on."


SEE ALSO
Red Bull join F1 teams in appeal
05 Jul 05 |  Formula One
Guilty F1 teams await US GP fate
29 Jun 05 |  Formula One
Fans launch legal action over GP
21 Jun 05 |  Formula One
Indianapolis unsure of F1 future
20 Jun 05 |  Formula One
Seven teams boycott US Grand Prix
19 Jun 05 |  Formula One
Schumacher claims farcical US win
19 Jun 05 |  Formula One
US Grand Prix as it happened
19 Jun 05 |  Formula One


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