Briatore pondering legal action against the Piquets

Flavio Briatore has announced that he will take action against the Piquet family after seeing his ban from international motor sport lifted by a French court yesterday.

The former Renault team principal had previously announced his intentions to sue the family in September last year, but such a procedure was delayed after Briatore was banned from motor sport following an investigation into the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix race-fix scandal.

However that sentence was declared ‘irregular’ by the Tribunal de Grande Instance, meaning that the Italian is now free to return to activities within the sport.

Following the court’s verdict Briatore told the Italian newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport that he was now likely to seek legal action against his former driver, Nelson Piquet Jr and his world-championship-winning father for their part in the matter.

The French court also highlighted the role of  Max Mosley in the investigation and ruled that the former-FIA president’s existing dispute with Briatore had distorted the World Motor Sport Council’s decision.

Such a claim is supported by the Italian who said:  “It was a case of vengeance from Mosley, who has always managed the FIA and the World Council as if it was private property,”

“He had reassured me, telling me they understood I didn’t have anything to do with that story. Then came that verdict. It was an ignoble thing after 18 years of F1.

“First Mosley tried to make me lose titles, first with Schumi then with Alonso, and then to destroy me with this story.”

Although the Italian is yet to decide whether to return to Formula One, he still intends to resume his driver management duties which he had also been banned from participating in.

“Except for [Heikki] Kovalainen and [Lucas] di Grassi, my relationship with the other drivers has never changed,” he said.

“In fact, now we’ll analyse the situation with the lawyers to see whether we should take legal action against anyone who has broken the contracts with us.”

Briatore’s comments come on the same day that F1-supremo Bernie Ecclestone said that the Italian would be welcomed back into the sport.

“I said at the time that even murderers don’t get life sentences these days and the court seems to agree,” Ecclestone told the Daily Express newspaper.

“He is welcome to come back to the paddock. He was a great character in F1 but I am not sure if that is what he wants to do now. I think he will move on from that.

“It’s good for him but it is not good for the FIA when you read the verdict.”