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FIA investigates ‘disturbing events’ at karting championships

Mat Coch

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Tuesday 6th October, 2020 - 7:43am

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Luca Corberi throws bodywork at a competitor

The FIA has launched an investigation into what it termed “disturbing events” at the FIA Karting KZ World Championship.

Video footage emerged of Italian racer Luca Corberi throwing bodywork at competitors after retiring from the race in Lonato, Italy before becoming involved in a physical altercation.

The Italian had clashed with Paolo Ippolito on Lap 9 of the 25-lap race, eliminating the former on the spot and resulting in the disqualification of both.

Corberi initially responded while still on track before the situation escalated post race.

The incidents sparked outrage, with 2009 Formula 1 World Champion Jenson Button calling for life bans for the 23-year-old and his father, who owns the facility and was allegedly involved in the physical dispute.

“Luca Corberi has just destroyed any chance he had at a racing career after his disgusting behaviour today at the FIA Karting World champs,” Button wrote on Twitter, accompanied by a video of the scuffle.

“His father owns the circuit and is seen power driving the guy into a wall, Life ban for both of these idiots please.”

The FIA issued a brief statement confirming it is looking into the incidents.

“The FIA and ACI are deeply concerned by the disturbing events that occurred yesterday during the FIA Karting KZ World Championship in Lonato, Italy, involving drivers, team members and track officials,” said the statement posted on its website.

“The FIA has launched an immediate investigation in to the incidents.”

Former Ferrari Formula 1 driver Felipe Massa, who is now President of CIK-FIA, also condemned the incidents with a post on Twitter.

“This behaviour is unacceptable in our sport, those individuals will face the consequences of their actions,” he wrote.

Corberi acknowledged the outburst on social media, offering an apology and explanation.

“I’d like to apologise to the motorsport community for what I’ve done,” the Italian wrote on Facebook before deleting his profile.

“There are no excuses to explain why I’ve done such a disgraceful act. This has been something I’ve never done in my 15 years of career, and I really hope it won’t be seen by anybody else in the future.

“After the race, once I’ve been called by the sporting judges, I’ve asked them to take my licence away because I was fully conscious about my irreparable mistakes, but as they showed me, they don’t have the power for doing it, it’s written in the international rules, so please, don’t be against them, they were just doing their work in the best way they could.

“For this reason I’ve decided to don’t take part to any other motorsport competition for the rest of my life, that’s not a self justice, it’s simply the right thing to do.

“My family has been in karting since 1985, we’ve seen it grow, we’ve seen the best and the worst part of it,” he continued.

“This episode will be remember as one of the worst in our sport and that’s something I’ll never forget.

“I’m not asking any indulgence, because I don’t deserve it. I will totally agree with the punishments required.

“I’m writing today to say sorry even if it’s not enough, because after all the bad things that happened during this event, the worst ever has been done by me, a guy who loves this sport and after the worst day of his life will still remember his good racing memories.”

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