McLaren says Ferrari broke gentleman's agreement over Mekies

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McLaren says Ferrari broke gentleman's agreement over Mekies
Adam Cooper
By: Adam Cooper
Mar 15, 2018, 12:42 PM

McLaren says it is "unhappy" with the FIA after it announced Laurent Mekies is to leave his post with the governing body and join Ferrari, breaking an agreement among teams.

 Laurent Mekies, F1 Deputy Race Director, FIA, Charlie Whiting, FIA Race Director, host a press conference about the introduction of the halo
FIA Safety Director Laurent Mekies and F1 Technical and Sporting Coordinator Marcin Budkowski.
Eric Boullier, Racing Director, McLaren
Charlie Whiting, FIA Delegate and Laurent Mekies, FIA Safety Director

Mekies, the FIA's safety delegate and deputy race director for Formula 1 and F2, will start at Ferrari in just over six months, on September 20. He will report to technical director Mattia Binotto.

After last year's Marcin Budkowski case – when the former head of the FIA's technical department left to join Renault – the matter of gardening leave was discussed by the teams in a Strategy Group meeting.

It was agreed that 12 months would be an appropriate minimum wait for former employees of both the FIA and the F1 Group.

The fact that this deadline has been broken so soon after it was agreed has angered McLaren.

"We very unhappy with the FIA for losing yet another key employee to a racing team," McLaren racing director Eric Boullier told Motorsport.com.

"Especially after it was agreed by all teams at the last Strategy Group meeting that no key technical FIA employees would be employed by a race team within 12 months of leaving the FIA.

"Ferrari went against the gentleman's agreement, and the FIA has not enforced it."

Other teams are known to have expressed similar views in private, although they have yet to comment publicly.

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About this article

Series Formula 1
Teams Ferrari Shop Now , McLaren Shop Now
Author Adam Cooper
Article type Breaking news