Renault survive Singapore scandal
FIA president Max Mosley has confirmed Renault remain committed to Formula One after avoiding severe sanctions over race-fixing.
Renault's penalty of permanent disqualification from F1, suspended for two years, may be seen by critics as lenient, considering the World Motor Sport Council in Paris noted their breach of the rules was of "unparalleled severity".
The 26-man Council stated that Nelson Piquet Junior being ordered to crash his car "compromised the integrity of the sport, but also endangered the lives of spectators, officials, other competitors and Piquet himself".
Despite that, the WMSC took into account mitigating circumstances, opting to suspend the ban until the end of the 2011 season, and it will only be enforced should they be "found guilty of a comparable breach during that time".
Renault's former team principal Flavio Briatore was handed the most stringent penalty, being handed a lifetime ban from FIA-sanctioned events.
The fact Renault have avoided financial penalty, either via a fine or points deduction which would have a knock-on effect when it comes to awarding prize money at the end of this year, came as a major surprise.
With the car industry currently crippled by the recession, Renault can perhaps breath easy, and in return it will not force them into considering whether to walk away from a sport that currently costs around 250 million euros a year (£225million) in which to compete.
Pointedly asked whether Renault had said they will stay in F1, Mosley issued a firm "Yes".
The WMSC turned their attention to the individuals involved, handing Briatore his lifetime ban as well as refusing to grant a license to any team who employs him, and Pat Symonds, who stepped down last week as executive director of engineering, received a five-year suspension.
Briatore's management career also appears effectively at an end as no driver will be granted a Superlicence - the document that allows them to compete - should they continue to associate themselves with the Italian.
Briatore currently has Alonso, Mark Webber, Heikki Kovalainen and Romain Grosjean, as well as Piquet Jnr, under his wing, while he jointly runs the GP2 Series.
Arguably, Mosley and the WMSC that also includes F1 supremo Bernie Ecclestone, have allowed commercial pragmatism to rule as they did not want to lose another manufacturer in the wake of Honda and BMW's exit in the last 10 months.
Explaining the Council's thinking, Mosley said: "I think it's the right decision. I think the blame has been placed where the blame should be placed.
"The penalty for Renault is disqualification, but suspended for two years, which means if they don't do something silly in the next two years, they don't have any problems.
"The penalty we have imposed is the harshest one we can inflict, which is disqualification, complete expulsion from the sport.
"However, because Renault have demonstrated they had absolutely no moral responsibility for what took place - that's to say Renault F1 the team didn't know, still less of course the company - it would be wrong in the circumstances to impose an immediate penalty."
It is Briatore and Symonds who bore the brunt, less so the latter given he admitted to his guilt in the saga, as well as declaring his "eternal regret and shame" that he was involved.
Mosley confirmed: "The penalty for Briatore is he can no longer be associated with the team, he can no longer be associated with the series, he can no longer come to the paddock at any FIA championship event and he can no longer manage drivers in Formula One.
"It's sad because he's been in motor sport for 20 years, more actually. It's sad to see a career end like that, but what else could we do?
"In Pat Symonds' case, instead of 'for life' it is for five years because Pat did come forward and didn't lie to us.
"He has not denied it, he's admitted it. The problem with Briatore is that he denied any knowledge of it, and continued to deny it even when it became quite clear he was involved."
The WMSC also confirmed the immunity from individual sanctions granted to Piquet Jnr, who apologised unreservedly for his part in the conspiracy, in exchange for volunteering his evidence.
With regards to Alonso, who went on to win the race on September 28 last year, the Council thanked the double world champion for co-operating with the FIA's enquiries and for attending the meeting.
The Council concluded Alonso was not in any way involved in his team's breach of the regulations.
Despite the latest stain on the sport, Mosley is convinced Formula One has a future.
"We now go on," insisted Mosley.
"We have problems from time to time, and as long as we solve them and deal with them properly, that's fine.
"F1 will recover from this. We've cut out the bad part and things will go on exactly as they should.
"I think we've demonstrated that we've dealt with it."
Appreciably, Renault "apologised unreservedly to the FIA and to the sport for the harm caused by its actions".
The team will pay the FIA's costs for the investigation, as well as make a significant contribution to FIA safety-related projects via way of expertise, rather than anything financial.
Expressing his team's regret, Renault F1's president Bernard Rey said: "We fully support the decision made by the Council.
"We apologise for such failure in front of the F1 community, and we hope we hope we can put this behind us."
In a Nutshell: Flavio Briatore ke FIA ban kore dise. 2008
Singapore GP te Nelson Piquet Jr. er accident ta Flavio iccha
kore koraise. Ei karone Renault der ke permanent ban kore
disilo, pore oita 2 year ban kore dise.