With January a rather quiet month for motorsport news, the court systems are kindly keeping the news stories ticking over for us. Already we have the Verstappen attempted murder charge in Holland, the Ecclestone vs Grobkowsky
bribery ‘shakedown’ case going on in Munich, and it will soon be joined by Adrian Sutil’s assault hearing. But another court case is set to kick off…
We’d almost forgotten that this one was still bubbling along, but Monday finally saw the court case between Force India and its former windtunnel supplier Aerolab get underway.
The case also involves a link with Team Lotus (now Caterham F1), courtesy of the Malaysian team’s Technical Director Mike Gascoyne, who worked in the same role at Force India when the allegations of impropriety are claimed to have occurred.
Gascoyne was already working for Team Lotus when, in 2009, Aerolab announced that it was suing Force India for breaches of contract, which itself was followed by Force India launching proceedings against Team Lotus, claiming that its 2010 T127 design bore rather too many similarities to the design of Force India’s 2009 challenger.
In August 2010, London’s High Court of Justice made a ruling in favour of Aerolab, issuing Force India a fine of €1 million (£820,000), plus damages and interest, for Force India’s failure to pay Aerolab monies owed under their contract.
Monday’s hearing, which will again take place at London’s High Court of Justice, is listed as ‘Force India Formula One Team Limited –v- 1Malaysia Racing Team Sdn Bhd and Others’ – although sources indicate that 1Malaysia (Caterham F1) is covered by Aerolab in the case.