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Last Updated: Sunday, 28 May 2006, 10:37 GMT 11:37 UK
Schumacher not a cheat - F1 boss
Michael Schumacher and Max Mosley
Schumacher, left, has been backed by Mosley in Monaco
Motorsport boss Max Mosley says Michael Schumacher should not be branded a cheat after he was stripped of pole position at the Monaco Grand Prix.

The German has been heavily criticised after he stopped his car on his final lap in qualifying, preventing Fernando Alonso from beating his time.

Mosley said: "I would not go as far as to say it was cheating."

But he rejected Ferrari boss Jean Todt's claims that officials had "no evidence" for relegating Schumacher.

Mosley, the president of F1's governing body the FIA, said: "It doesn't really stand up when they had all the telemetry, all the television images, listened to Michael and whatever he had to say... I don't think you could say they had no evidence."

Seven-time world champion Schumacher, no stranger to controversy over the years, will start Sunday's race from the back of the grid after his times were disallowed.

You've got to take the thing in its context
Max Mosley

The incident prompted many to conclude that he had deliberately stopped the car on the track to ensure that title rival Alonso could not beat his qualifying time.

But Mosley added: "You've got to take the thing in its context, in the heat of the moment when you are desperately trying to get on the front row of the grid and you've got a split second to take a decision."

Nevertheless, he supported the decision to penalise Schumacher, saying: "Armed with all the information, (the race stewards) came to a conclusion.

"It took them several hours, they went into great detail, it's how it should be done.

"These situations are always difficult, but if you reach the conclusion that someone has done something they shouldn't do, you've got to react."

Schumacher stripped of pole spot
28 May 06 |  Formula One
Schumacher's chequered history
28 May 06 |  Formula One
Schumacher in the dock
28 May 06 |  Formula One


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