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Lotus ops boss: 'I swear I'm sorry'

2013-10-29 07:36

TEMPERS FLARE: Lotus Formula 1 team has apologised for the exchange of foul language over the team radio with ops boss Alan Permane and driver Kimi Riakkonen during the 2013 Indian GP on Sunday. Image: AFP

ALAN BALDWIN

Swearing over the team radio, heard by millions of TV viewer - not good protocol during an F1 GP, but Lotus did it. And now the team has said "whoops, sorry!".

NEW DELHI, India - The Lotus Formula 1 team has apologised for the bad language used in a heated exchange with its driver Kimi Raikkonen during Sunday's 2013 Indian Formula 1 GP.

Trackside operations director Alan Permane was heard on the team radio using a profanity to order Finn Raikkonen, who had worn tyres and overheating brakes, to move over and let team mate Romain Grosjean through and into third place.

'TWO SECONDS FASTER'

Raikkonen, who famously told his team over the radio back in 2012 to leave him alone because he knew what he was doing, replied with some choice words of his own.

Team principal Eric Boullier said on the team's website: "Romain was two seconds a lap faster than Kimi so it was not even a team order. With hindsight, the radio message could have been sent in a less emotional way.

"There was a lot of tension, a lot of potential technical problems, and some of the words that flew around were simply not appropriate. I know quite a few people were surprised and I can only apologise for that on behalf of the team.

"It won't happen again."

Grosjean finished third in the previous three races while Raikkonen's form has tailed off since the 2007 World champion, seventh on Sunday, announced he was leaving to rejoin Ferrari in 2014.

Grosjean had to go off-track to avoid colliding with his team mate as he tried to pass and was critical of him afterwards.

"We could have lost two cars," he told Sky TV. "Honestly, I don't know - it's not my problem. I overtook him and I'm thankful we didn't lose any points."

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 F1 season – fresh reports every day.
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