FIM President Reproaches Biaggi And Rossi About Suzuka Incidents

FIM President Reproaches Biaggi And Rossi About Suzuka Incidents

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FIM President Francesco Zerbi has issued a public letter of reprimand to Max Biaggi and Valentino Rossi for televised incidents during the 500cc Grand Prix at Suzuka, in which Biaggi pushed Rossi off the track and onto the grass, followed by Rossi repassing Biaggi, cutting in front of Biaggi and then flipping Biaggi off in the middle of turn one.

While Zerbi admits in the letter that “It is not my role to establish if what happened during the event could have been sanctioned as a sporting offense and what measures could or should have been taken: In this connection, it was the Race Direction at the scene”, Zerbi goes on in the letter to say “I think that after having verified the events and the–rightly called negative–reactions which materialized in negative judgements in your regard and in the regard of our sport, it is my dury to intervene.”

In the letter, Zerbi continues, “My intervention is two-fold: The first is a reproach to you both, in order to invite you to more attentively and correctly control your actions and reactions, without taking anything away from the fighting instinct and your desire for victory, your skill, your courage and the sporting qualities that a true champion shows to all the world…

“The second, much simpler but more direct, aims to avoid repeating situations in the future where the persons who must intervene do not know the manner in which to do so.

“For this reason, the Grand Prix Permanent Bureau will request the Race Direction to intervene with the appropriate sanctions according to the gravity of the actions and/or reactions that could happen during an event, or in the area of an event, and which could manifest itself not only as a sporting offense already provided for in the rules, but also more generally as ‘anti-sporting or censurable behavior’. I realize that this description is generic, even if it is precise, but it is not possible to establish a list of cases and actions that would define this behavior.

“We will watch to see that the persons charged with applying the sanctions are, as far as is humanly possible, the most attentive, moderate and conscious of their very important role.

“Mistakes can be made, but is is important to do all that is possible to avoid them being made and to avoid them being repeated, and that the persons who make these errors are punished appropriately.”

It is unclear if Zerbi’s letter, which was FAXed to media outlets by the FIM, means that sanctions will be taken against Biaggi and Rossi.

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