20 Jun 2013

Mercedes bid tonight to escape sanctions

6:08 am on 20 June 2013

The principal of the Mercedes Formula One motor racing team Ross Brawn, a past master at finding Formula One loopholes, may need to pull another rabbit from his magician's hat tonight if his team is to escape potentially heavy sanctions.

Brawn will be asked to explain to an International Tribunal hearing in Paris why the team of Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg should escape punishment for apparently breaking strict rules on testing.

The possible penalties range from a reprimand to exclusion from the championship.

In one of the biggest controversies faced by the sport in recent years, the tribunal must decide whether the team broke the rules in using their 2013 car at a test conducted last month in Barcelona by tyre suppliers Pirelli and, if so, whether they deserve to be punished for it.