Formula 1 - Pirelli argues FIA cannot sanction it

Pirelli does not understand why it has faced disciplinary charges from the FIA regarding the Mercedes tyre test.

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In front of the FIA International Tribunal hearing over charges it and Mercedes breached Formula 1's testing regulations, Pirelli's lawyer Dominique Dumas argued that motor racing's governing body had no jurisdiction to sanction it.

"Pirelli cannot understand the disciplinary action," he said. "Pirelli is only acting with the rights it was given by the FIA.

"We are unable to understand the disciplinary process. Ferrari and Red Bull have confirmed that they have no grievances against Pirelli, and it is also impossible to understand the procedure.

"The claims are unfounded because it has been recognised that Pirelli has not violated the code."

Dumas pointed out that case law in France relating to Flavio Briatore's punishments after the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix race-fixing scandal outlined that the FIA can only rule on FIA members and competitors.

"In the framework of the case, FIA versus Flavio Briatore, an expert gave his opinion that the FIA, under French law, could have jurisdiction for sporting matters and statutes, but no jurisdiction or sanctioning power on people who have not accepted to comply with the regulations."

Pirelli claims that the only way that the FIA can deal with potential breaches of its contract with the governing body could be through the civil court.

"There cannot be a sanction without any solid legal grounding and Pirelli cannot accept and will not accept its image, quality of products, or credibility being tarnished because of a case that is not admissible and is unfounded," Dumas added.

"I hope the decision you take will appease the tensions and will allow parties to come together and decide on rules, referring to tyre testing in F1. It is absolutely urgent and imperative to do so."

The FIA's legal representative Mark Howard argued earlier in the day, however, that Pirelli was bound by the F1 regulations as part of clauses in its contract with the governing body.

"We suggest it is clear that Pirelli are to be bound by the regulations - the F1 Sporting Regulations and the International Sporting Code," he said.

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