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Williams and Toyota disqualified in Canada 13 Jun 2004

Ralf Schumacher (GER) Williams BMW FW26.
Formula One World Championship, Rd8, Race Day, Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Canada, 13 June 2004 Cristiano da Matta (BRA) Toyota TF104.
Formula One World Championship, Rd8, Qualifying Day, Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Canada, 12 June 2004 Juan Pablo Montoya (COL) Williams during the drivers parade.
Formula One World Championship, Rd8, Race Day, Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Canada, 13 June 2004 Olivier Panis (FRA) Toyota TF104.
Formula One World Championship, Rd8, Race Day, Canadian Grand Prix, Montreal, Canada, 13 June 2004

The Williams and Toyota teams have been disqualified from the Canadian Grand Prix after stewards discovered irregularities on the brake ducts of their cars following Sunday’s race.

Williams drivers Ralf Schumacher and Juan Pablo Montoya had finished second and fifth respectively in the Montreal event, while Toyota’s Cristiano da Matta and Olivier Panis were eighth and tenth.

Their disqualification means that Ferrari’s Rubens Barrichello is elevated to second place in Sunday’s result, with Jenson Button taking third for BAR. Giancarlo Fisichella moves up to fourth for Sauber, ahead of the McLarens of Kimi Raikkonen and David Coulthard. Timo Glock scores world championship points for seventh on his Grand Prix debut for Jordan, with team mate Nick Heidfeld taking the final point in eighth.

Williams technical director Sam Michael told the news agency Reuters that his team would not be appealing the decision. He admitted that their brake ducts did not comply with regulations, but insisted that the discrepancy was an unintentional error that had not given their cars any performance advantage.

Toyota also accepted the decision, albeit reluctantly, with chassis technical director Mike Gascoyne similarly saying that an unforeseen error had led to their exclusion and that it had given them no performance gains.

"Unfortunately, the front brake ducts on our cars were found to be illegal after today's Canadian Grand Prix,” confirmed Gascoyne. “We presented a case to the Stewards of the Meeting, attributing the cause to a stack-up of manufacturing tolerances, stating that even with this, the brake ducts were still within a generally accepted tolerance level. The Stewards of the Meeting decided not to accept this case and whilst we are disappointed to lose our hard-fought eighth and tenth places, we have to accept their decision. It is Toyota's policy to always run cars that conform to all regulations. This is simply a regrettable and unforeseen issue that led to no competitive advantage."

John Howett, President of the Toyota team, added: "After an internal discussion with the relevant personnel, we intended to appeal against the disqualification imposed by the Stewards of the Meeting, however we were unable to meet the FIA appeal deadline. I must stress that the alleged technical infringement resulted in absolutely no increase in our performance level during today's race. The brake ducts on our race cars were still within a generally accepted tolerance level. We reluctantly accept this unpleasant penalty and must now look to next week's grand prix in Indianapolis."