Briatore appeal verdict in new year

Flavio Briatore will have to wait until January 5 to learn whether or not his lifetime ban from motor racing is overturned by a French court.

The former Renault boss was handed a ban by the FIA in September after it emerged that Nelson Piquet Jnr deliberately crashed his car in order to help team-mate Fernando Alonso win the Singapore Grand Prix last year.

Briatore has termed the FIA decision illegal, saying it violated the "most basic rules of procedure and the rights to a fair trial". He is also demanding damages of around £900,000.

His lawyer Philippe Ouakrat was present at the Tribunal de Grande Instance in Paris where the case is being heard.

The 59-year-old Italian, who had been involved in plans for a breakaway series, has accused FIA president Max Mosley of being "blinded by an excessive desire for personal revenge".

In a statement earlier this month, Briatore said: "The decisions to carry out an investigation and to submit it to the World Council were taken by the same person, Max Mosley, the FIA president."

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