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Formula 1 News - April, 2009
Dennis to quit F1 over 'lie-gate' affair

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Apr.16 (GMM) Ron Dennis is expected to announce his complete withdrawal from the world of formula one on Thursday.

According to widespread speculation and reports, the former McLaren team boss will remain chairman of the Woking based company but leave the running of the racing operations entirely to Martin Whitmarsh and his deputies.

It is believed the announcement, to be made at the McLaren headquarters in Britain, is in reaction to the 'lie-gate' scandal, with some newspapers likening it to Dennis "falling on his sword" so that central figures like Whitmarsh and Lewis Hamilton can sidestep the blame.

The Daily Mail said the press announcement will follow an address to his staff, when Dennis is to "tell them that his involvement in grand prix racing is over after more than 40 years".

It is also rumoured that Dennis' announcement, to involve the 61-year-old explaining that he will focus entirely on McLaren's new production road car division, may be part of a deal with the FIA ahead of the World Motor Sport Council hearing later this month.

Dennis' long relationship with FIA president Max Mosley has been an acrimonious one, so his departure may appease the Paris body as it considers sanctions against McLaren for lying to stewards in Australia and Malaysia.

The Daily Telegraph reports that Dennis may have made the decision, including not flying to China this weekend, "due to pressure" from Hamilton's father and manager Anthony, who is said to be furious about his son's implication in the lying scandal.

It is said that Dennis, whose relationship with Anthony has been strained for some time, may no longer attend any races.

It is also reported that Hamilton, 24, will not be available for normal media interviews or appearances in the Shanghai paddock on Thursday or Friday.

The Daily Mail suggested the move could put the reigning world champion "in breach of the regulations".

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