Former F1 Renault boss Flavio Briatore demands huge compensation package at court hearing in Paris

By Sportsmail Reporter

Former Renault team boss Flavio Briatore has demanded £900,000 in damages and for his lifetime F1 ban to be overturned at a court hearing in Paris.

The flamboyant Italian, who is also a co-owner of Queens Park Rangers, has taken action against Formula One's governing body the FIA, claiming he had been denied his right to a free and fair defence.    

'My client only aims to be able to do what he wants and to recover his freedom. He is calm and determined,' Briatore's lawyer Philippe Ouakrat told reporters before the hearing.    

Philippe Ouakrat

FIA hearing: Philippe Ouakrat (centre) - the lawyer of former Renault boss Flavio Briatore at Tuesday's court hearing in Paris

Briatore was handed a life ban by the FIA in September for his role in a race-fixing scandal at last year's Singapore Grand Prix.    

Brazilian driver Nelson Piquet Jr, who was dropped by Renault in August, told the FIA he had been told to crash deliberately in that race. He said he had done so to bring out the safety car and help his Spanish team mate Fernando Alonso win the race.    

Enlarge   Piquet Jnr

Carnage: Piquet Jnr's smashed Renault car at the 2008 Singapore Grand Prix

Flavio Briatore

Compensation: Flavio Briatore wants £900,000 in damages

Former champions Renault were handed a suspended permanent ban.  

According to his lawyer, Briatore believes the FIA was not entitled to hand out indefinite sanctions and that his ban was not imposed by an impartial judge because of his strained relationship with then FIA president Max Mosley. 

The Italian also says the whole procedure was flawed as it was partly based on an anonymous witness, who was not named.

The Paris court ruling will also affect the future of Championship side QPR.

If the ban is upheld, the Italian could be forced out of the club under the league's fit-and-proper persons rule.

The court said it expected to reach a verdict on January 5.   

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