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Mallya shattered by crash
Force India boss gets emotional after crash in Monaco.
Last Modified: 28 May 2008 16:14 GMT

A crash prevented Force India from their
highest ever finish [GALLO/GETTY]
Force India team boss Vijay Mallya was moved to tears by the late accident which robbed his rookie Formula One team of a fourth-placed finish at last weekend's Monaco Grand Prix.

The Indian tycoon said that he was "shattered'' when Adrian Sutil was hit from behind by world champion Kimi Raikkonen of Ferrari, putting the German out of the race just nine laps from the finish while running fourth, on course for the team's first points of the season.

"It was sad for us, that moment was a very emotional moment,'' Mallya said.

"I was (in tears) and so were many of us actually.

"I've had quite a lot of SMS messages and phone calls from supporters in India, all of whom are highly emotional. But such things happen in racing, that's what I've been telling everyone. F1 wouldn't be F1 if it wasn't as unpredictable as it is.''

Mallya criticises Raikonnen

Mallya remained upset by the nature of the accident and Raikonnen's role.

The Finn lost control of his Ferrari under braking exiting the Monaco tunnel, and his car careened into the back of the Force India.

"Kimi just rear ended him,'' Mallya said.

"It wasn't as if it was an overtaking manoeuvre, something drastic must have happened, because you wouldn't expect a world champion to run into somebody.''

"It was sad for us, that moment was a very emotional moment.''

Raikkonen was cleared by stewards and forgiven by Sutil for causing the collision.

The strong performance by Sutil in the rain around the tight street circuit at Monaco was timely for the German, whose mediocre performances in earlier races had many in the always-ruthless F1 paddock calling for him to be replaced.

"Adrian Sutil has a lot of ability and talent, and we're glad and proud to have him in our team,'' Mallya said.

"Some people started questioning my decision to keep him when he didn't finish a few races at the start of the season, but he has more than redeemed himself.''

Source:
Agencies
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