Despite McLaren s part in the espionage saga, Mercedes-Benz have insisted they are still committed to Formula 1 and their partnership with McLaren.
McLaren have been thrown out of the 2007 constructors championship and fined $100 million. Mercedes-Benz are their engine partner and they have made if clear that this season s antics will not affect that partnership. Norbert Haug, motor sport boss of Mercedes-Benz, when questioned over whether his company were still committed to the sport replied, “Of course we are. This is not up for discussion. We also stand by our partner McLaren and we refrain from putting the blame on anybody.â€
When questioned over whether there were any worries about a withdrawal of Mercedes-Benz Haug replied, “No worries at all and I don t make out the image problems we are supposed to have. On the contrary we get a lot of support and encouragement from outside.â€
Haug s comments are in line with a statement released by Mercedes-Benz last week which confirmed that they supported McLaren s claims that they had not used any confidential Ferrari information on their cars.
“Our partner McLaren stated absolutely clearly that our Formula 1 car does not incorporate any third-party concepts or ideas from design drawings created outside the team,â€ the statement read. “The same applies to speculation concerning knowledge of other teams’ race strategies, the distribution of weight in F1 cars, etc.
“Mr. Coughlan, the team member involved and suspended since the allegations emerged on 3 July, confirmed in a statutory declaration that at no point in time did he pass on any of the material to McLaren, which he received privately from a member of the team which currently ranks immediately behind us.
“Our partner McLaren repeatedly suggested to FIA that our F1 car should be examined and checked against the competitor’s documents; however, FIA has not made use of this offer to this day. No evidence of any culpable action has been submitted or made known to McLaren to date, and McLaren states that the team has not been involved in any culpable action whatsoever.”