It is possible McLaren will be banned from a number of races should the World Motor Sport Council take a dim view of the 'lie-gate' scandal at the April 29 meeting.

It is possible McLaren will be banned from a number of races should the World Motor Sport Council take a dim view of the 'lie-gate' scandal at the April 29 meeting.

Bernie Ecclestone told the UK newspaper Express that the serious charge of lying to stewards and bringing the sport into disrepute is worsened by McLaren's recent trouble over espionage.

"It is never good for anyone if you are back in court quickly for something similar," the F1 chief executive said.

The FIA body has essentially unlimited powers: from race bans, total exclusion from the championship, to draconian financial penalties, like the $100m fine levied against McLaren in 2007 for spying.

Ecclestone admitted that McLaren figures lying to the stewards to have Jarno Trulli penalised amounted to "fraud".

"There are many options open if the charge sticks and it would be a terrible thing if any team were banned from races. But it could happen," he said.

In 2005, BAR-Honda was banned for two races for fielding a trick fuel tank.

 

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