Button demands lifetime bans for kart racer Corberi and father over “disgusting behaviour”

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Formula 1 world champion Jenson Button has called for Italian kart racer Luca Corberi to be given a lifetime ban from the sport after a shocking video emerged of him attacking a rival during today’s FIA Karting world championship.

Footage of Corberi’s behaviour during the KZ Final race have been widely shared on social media. The 23-year-old Tony Kart driver retired nine laps into the 25-lap race after colliding with rival Paolo Ippolito.

The official broadcast of the race (below) shows Corberi standing at the side of the circuit and throwing the bumper from his kart in the direction of Ippolito as he passed by.

Button shared amateur footage from the paddock after the race which appears to show Corberi and another individual physically attacking Ippolito. Corberi’s family are the operators of the Lonato circuit where the race took place.

“Luca Corberi has just destroyed any chance he had at a racing career after his disgusting behaviour today at the FIA Karting World champs,” said Button on social media. “His father owns the circuit and is seen power driving the guy into a wall. Life ban for both of these idiots please.”

Corberi and Ippolito were both disqualified from the race over the collision, which was not shown during the race.

The stewards ruled DRG driver Ippolito “could not avoid to make contact with driver 61 [Corberi] and following that action forced the driver 61 to retire.” However he was found to have infringed the Code of Driving Conduct on Karting Circuits concerning collisions between competitors.

The official race classification notes Corberi was given a “disqualification from the competition for a (very) bad manoeuvre” under Appendix L, Chapter IV article 2(c) of the International Sporting Code, which requires driver to “use the track at all times”.

It remains to be seen what action the authorities may take over Corberi’s subsequent actions.

Video: Corberi throws bumper after retiring from FIA KZ Final

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  • 92 comments on “Button demands lifetime bans for kart racer Corberi and father over “disgusting behaviour””

    1. Carl Blackwell
      5th October 2020, 0:10

      JB is right,100% loss of licence, he should never be allowed to race again. Shocking behaviour.

      1. Given he had time to think before he acted (twice!) and he is 23, I agree. If he would have been underage I guess a 3 year ban would be appropriate. And thats just based on the track action. The social media footage is even more disturbing, especially now I understand the 2nd attacker is his father. Ban for both seems the minimum here. Some heavy fines should be accompanying it.

      2. Corberi is clearly very immature and has acted like a very spoiled Child. he must be removed from motorsport until he is mature enough to behave decently and not endanger other drivers. A 10 year ban should be adequate. The assault after the race should be dealt with through the criminal courts and a short custodial sentence should make him understand how appalling was his behaviour.

    2. Since when was requesting something and using the word please a demand?

      Sensationalist journalism which I thought racefans was above….

      (I also generally detest the act of turning a tweet into an entire article, but I guess that’s the world we now live in)

      1. It is quite normal to say “Please” when requesting something, especially if you don’t have a specific right to expect obedience to your request. The use of the word shouldn’t be taken as somehow weakening your request.

        1. I agree with Steve – reading Button’s tweet there is no demand there, just a request which is not the same thing.

          1. Jose Lopes da Silva
            5th October 2020, 9:30

            I agree with Stephen – the difference between a request and a demand is quite semantic, especially in a context like this.
            Moreover, Steve Webb’s comment take the spotlight away from the essencial question, which is something that journalism has been having to deal since the rise of the comment section as a so-called “place for public debate.”

      2. Steve Webb, you think someone throwing a bumper onto a kart race is not motorsport news?! Im not a big fan of ‘internet has gone crazy over….xyz’ when its a couple of star trek t shirt wearers trolling but this is definitely a story, regardless of whether its on twitter. Im definitely not a fan of ‘this is whats wrong with the world’. NO, its whats wrong with Corberi

    3. Looks like an article about a serious incident at a racing event with Button’s tweet used as added emphasis. For some reason some people can’t see the obvious, but I guess that’s the world we now live in.

    4. A couple kids fighting with helmets on? Don’t see what the big deal is. Lifetime ban? The adults are the ones that should be ashamed. Nothing worse than some parents getting involved in their kids dust-up.

      1. In what world is a 23 year old a kid?

      2. Kids? The guy is 23 years old, he’s an adult in every sense of the word. He should be ashamed. It was pathetic.

      3. trowing debris on the track, trying to hit the other driver… not very sportsmanlike. And after that going into the paddock attacking that driver again? not very nice …

        1. Not only is it unsportsmanlike, it’s extremely dangerous!

      4. Speaking of ashamed … don’t you wish you knew your subject matter before wading in with your 5 cents worth?

        1. Unless the kid slept with his wife, don’t need to know… lifetime ban is appropriate…

          1. Darrell Smith what makes you feel like throwing your bumper into the path racing Karts while having a temper tantrum now seems completely normal to me… I said that wrong.
            It now seems that you are nuts.

            Maybe next time they will race hard and settle their differences like men will Instead of looking like a fools.

            As for you, Look at it again and consider the possibilities of what could have happened. It’s in you to see the right thing here.

      5. Are you for real? It wasn’t a little brawl between 2 helmeted kids. It was a 23 year old man who stood on the outside of a bend on a live track and physically threw a bumber at a driver travelling at racing speed. Furthermore, he missed and hit another kart. There is no room for that kind of behaviour.

      6. @darryn,
        Watch the guy throwing a bumper at running carts, you won’t feel the same, trust me.
        Youtube video link at the end of the article is what you’re looking for.

      7. Clearly you’re just commenting without having watched all the videos nor did look up for any information… Actually you didn’t read the article, did you ?

        The guy is 23 years old adult and he attacks a 16 year old kid. He also tried to throw a bumper at him and hit another driver.

      8. Consider yourself hung out to dry Darrys Smith! You get no quarter given In the tough world of finger wagging racefans. Now, when you’ve thoroughly researched the whole story you may try again, obviously with citations etc included.

    5. I cannot find footage of the initial crash that put him out but Ippolito was found to be not at fault for the incident. People tend to get the most angry when they know their stuff up was their own fault deep down.
      In any case definitely a ban for the driver and the FIA should ban the use of the circuit while under current ownership

      1. I watched the Youtube video of the entire championship day, it’s 6 hours but I managed the watch the qualifying heat and the final in which Corberi raced. My observations, which most can deduct by this behavior and the fact that he’s a 23 yo “still” in karting:
        – Quali – started 2nd, quickly outmatched, dropped spots to 14th/16th(?), can’t recall, point is he doesn’t have it
        – Final – top 10 start or so, dropped spots again. number of crashes/spins/mechanical issues for other drivers, many visibly “crushed” (crying) as their hopes of good result faded. No one acted like a 2 year old throwing tantrums tho. Corberi crash, no footage of what actually happened, just him in the barriers. HERE’s what drove me crazy, he lifted his kart out of the barriers with the bumper partially intact so he had to pry it apart. the spoiled brat couldn’t event make a decent throw out of it lol. Then he proceeds to walk across the track against the marshals orders to join them.
        – Post race – what a disgrace. the guy has had time to clear his head and yet he decides to charge at the 16 yo who’s still looking down at his kart. not even man enough to go face2face. oh and did I mention his dad decided to join this shameful series of events by also attacking the 16yo racer?

        wow. Ban them both for life. Maybe that way Corberi will be able to actually win a race in his daddy’s track after all. Punk!

        1. 23 yo “still” in karting… The podium yesterday consisted of drivers that is 33, 22 and 35 years old. Antonio Fuoco (3rd in GP3 in 2016, 8th and 7th in F2 in 2017&2018) participated in the event. In fact the 3rd placed guy won the karting world championship some years before Max Verstappen did. The majority of these guys are pro karters, and like any other form of pro racing, the ages are anywhere from 20 to 40 for the vast majority.

          Also, the driver who was attacked is way older than 16. Based on his racing history, he cannot be younger than 21 himself.

          A lifetime ban should be a no-brainer, but so should facts.

    6. What a punk

      It’s stunning. What a fine example for anyone to see. If it was me in my cart and he tossed the bumper at me while I was racing. I would have turned left and run over his head. But if I missed I’m sure you would find him spitting leather…a good lesson for such a BAD example

      Button is 100% CORRECT.

      Run this pathetic family out of town.

      But first give him a chance to explain himself and give him a chance to apologize. My guess is his apology will be rotted and certainly fake. If that happens then teach him a lesson. Teach him within an inch. WHY because examples are needed in this case. Hey race fans that it’s ok to get mad, but to get even this way needs extreme punishment and let that example be known across the land.

      When you hunt out a driver so you can toss a bumper at him while at racing speeds then that example needs swift and aggressive punishment.

      In my day you’d get your ass kicked for such stupidity.

      May he and his pathetic father just go away for good.

    7. Well that’s a good way to undermine 50 odd years of hard work to make motorsport as safe as possible. Absolute insanity. Hard to disagree with Jenson. That sort of behaviour definitely doesn’t need a warning nor any second chances. He even had time to think about what he was doing!

    8. It seemed to me that both the driver, Corberi, who threw his front bumper at Ipollito, then ignored track workers to walk across several lanes of the track on the way to the pits, and his father, who both violently and physically attacked Ipollito, a 15 year old minor, half the size of Corberi, 23, and his father, age unknown, in the pits. The race footage and comments of the attack is on Twitter at: https://twitter.com/JensonButton/status/1312876675516882946
      and on YouTube at: https://www.youtube.com/embed/f7utq6-HC4U

      Kudos to Jenson Button (and Keith Collantine) for the news…

      1. Josh (@canadianjosh)
        5th October 2020, 2:48

        Two grown men going after a 15 year old is beyond two drivers having words or pushing each other in the pits. The two are dang lucky it wasn’t my boy.

      2. @forrestgump

        It is totally unacceptable.

        Generally fights between competitors are handled as a sporting matter. However, at least in some places, use of a weapon (like a bumper) would negate that exception. Also his father was not a competitor, and, at least here in the states, could expect charges.

        1. @slotopen Especially due to being the circuit owner, of all people.

      3. @forrestgump Are we sure about the age? If it is indeed Paolo Ippolito, that guy has been around in the world karting scene since the late-2000s, he’s at least 22 himself. Doesn’t make Corberi’s actions any better, but let’s not go about charging him of assaulting a minor.

        1. @wsgo Yes, after watching him speak at a 2017 karting championship on YouTube, I agree with you. He is defiantly not a pre-pubescent 15 year old… I was going by the comments by others on the twitter link and I apologize. :-/

        2. You have to be at least 15 to race in KZ2 which he has been doing since 2014 so he is at least 21

        3. I read somewhere Paolo Ippolito is 31 years old.

      4. Ippolito was born in 1994, he is just short compared to Corberi.

    9. In NASCAR this would be used as a promo.

      1. Not TRUE…but funny

    10. Throwing something at another competitor on the track should be an instant and lifetime ban. No excuse.

      Would have been justice if Ipollito had run over that bumper and launched into that fruitloop, folding him in half with his kart!

    11. I guess Max is his idol. Except they took it beyond shoving at the weight scale to two adults assaulting a minor. Absolutely insane.

      1. Not a minor though. He’s 24 or 25 years old. Still though.

      2. Disgusting reaction.. nuff said..

      3. Which is why Verstappen’s shove needed to be punishmed more heavily than it was.

        1. Jack (@jackisthestig)
          5th October 2020, 15:00

          There is a big difference between a little shove from Max and this guy who just starts swinging straight away.

    12. What of if throwing that bumper had caused a crash and someone had been seriously hurt or died?

      Think about that for a moment, all you who ‘don’t get it’.

      1. Indeed @stubbornswiss. That was so antitethical to anything that should be going on during any sports event.

        There really is no justification for that kind of behaviour.

      2. @stubbornswiss Precisely. Motorsports is expected to be especially careful about safety, because the average member of the general public can easily understand why motor racing can be dangerous. Especially things like lobbing heavy objects around, which is neither helpful to anyone’s race performance nor something believed to be safe in the general context.

    13. How heavy are those bumpers on the karts and how fast are they going? If Corberi had managed to hit Ippolito, what could’ve been the consequences? It looks like it could be life threatening

      1. I don’t think the bumpers are more than a few kg @meck, but it could have still cause a serious accident either when hitting someone in the head or when someone drives over it and crashes (with the close field that could have been a pile-up too).

        1. @bascb Massa got substantial head injuries from a spring that weighed only a kilo. What the bumper (mostly) lacks in sharpness, it makes up for in concussive blunt force.

          1. I agree with that, although Karts probably don’t have the incredible speed that F1 cars have, this bumper flying around the track could have caused serious injuries.

      2. It’s a hollow piece of plastic so it’s pretty light, but these are KZ karts probably doing close to 100kph at that section of the track.

    14. I would like to see how he ended up in the fence.

      Maybe both drivers need massive bans.

    15. There was also a lot of time between the bumper throwing and the fight. Enough time to cool down.

    16. This reminds me of that 98 Spa incident when Schumacher went to “see” Coulthard to tell him something.

      I hope he knows what he did and takes responsibility for his manners but the truth that his father (owner of the track) went there is above stupidity.

      1. hen Schumacher went to “see” Coulthard

        noting of that sort..
        its was a very angry Schum but nothing happened.

        1. Back then there were so many other people who had time to go between then and they didn’t have a change to fight. I wonder if the same would have happened without those guys..

          1. *between them…

        2. I wasn’t watching back then but I’ve read up on it. and there’s a difference. that was two grown men confronting each other in a garage. this is a case of some crazy dude throwing an object to a kart moving at racing speed (and missing…). it could have gone down a lot worse I guess

    17. Endangering life of rivals counts for a criminal procedings against this person.
      Also FIA are to blame here as they let Vettel and Verstappen off the hook in recent past setting terrible example for younger driver coming up the ranks.

      1. @Chaitanya
        Last I checked Verstapped was punished (for a little girly push he gave when he was a young man himself…….)
        So check your facts before you come here posting lies and give a terrible example for younger posters coming through the ranks.
        (But let me guess: You posting blatant lies is totally acceptable?)

        1. Oh, and btw, you also lack a lot of historical knowledge….makes me wonder: 13 or 14 yrs old?
          The correct phrase should be: “Also FIA are to blame here as they let Hunt and Piquet and Senna and Michael and Sebastian off the hook……..”

          1. Some of those incidents didn’t help…

      1. Holy heck!! That is a very violent attack.

    18. ”Fun” part is that the president of FIA-CIK and well known figure Felipe Massa was present ,as it was the season final and honestly i cant see how they’ll avoid a lifetime ban,especially with the publicity it gained

      1. @miltosgreekfan I remember when having a dignitary of that stature would cause people to mind their Ps and Qs…

    19. Yes driver and track should be banned driver due to his actions including throwing the bumper bar, walking across track instead of listening to the officials and him and his father attacking the other driver in the pits. Reason for track ban the father has ownership of the track. If no penalties given during the race. Can’t take actions into their own hands. Absolutely disgraceful actions for any racer that’s legally an adult. Take away the licensing.

      1. I agree. Shame to lose the track though, it looks like a good circuit

        1. They can return the licence when it is under ownership that can prove its conduct is up to the standards expected of a venue upon which the FIA is willing to sanction races.

      2. Jack (@jackisthestig)
        5th October 2020, 15:13

        I agree, I’m not a fan of ‘cancel culture’ but a competitor being attacked by the circuit operator in such a violent way is completely unacceptable. As bad as the son’s actions are, the father is beyond the pale. Hope the police are involved.

    20. Corberi should be banned from ever setting foot at a racetrack again.
      Quite frankly the sport is not tough enough on people who recklessly endanger others. Piquet Jr, Ferrucci – people who behave that way should be banned for life, no exceptions.

      1. Piquet Jr, Ferrucci 

        , Senna

          1. Yeah.. but not in 1990

    21. Jose Lopes da Silva
      5th October 2020, 9:48

      Meanwhile, Nikita Mazepin is a great guy who is just getting better and will earn his seat in Formula 1. He’s doing good progress, right? Getting faster, working a lot, full of passion for our sport. He’ll be great.

      1. Er… …no

        1. Jose Lopes da Silva
          5th October 2020, 15:26

          There are rumours that Haas could be sold to Mazepin Sr.
          In a couple of years we will see people saying that “he’s going good”, like they say of Stroll now. Punching Illot will be considered a youth mishap.

    22. Absolutely. Lifetime ban, utterly disgraceful.

    23. Lol. It is 2020, people loosing their minds left and right.

      Yeah bann the two from all FIA races.

      1. I haven’t seen people losing their minds. I’ve seen people getting justifiably angry about a 23-year-old endangering another competitor by throwing something at him at racing speeds and then assaulting him in Parc fermé. And I fail to see what it being 2020 has to do with it. Neither of those things have ever been acceptable in motorsport.

    24. Yes, things can get heated in competition and drivers can act in ways they should be ashamed of, but this was prolonged aggression. Losing a racing license is the least that should happen to Corberi.

      Endangering himself and other by *deliberately* throwing debris onto a track is shocking.

      His physical assault after race is perhaps even more shocking, such a violent and unhinged individual needs investigating beyond the racing regulatory bodies. There is no excuse.

      1. The bumper was still attached to the kart when he crashed too, which means that he physically removed it. That then goes from throwing it in frustration to premeditation. People have done jail time for throwing things off of bridges on to motorways, these karts are going the same speed and have no crumple zones

    25. It should be a criminal case. Lifetime ban is obvious but that kind of stuff is no longer a sporting matter. It is criminal.

    26. This behavior is totally unacceptable…
      1) Luca Corberi and his father should both get a life ban from motorsports;
      2) People should boycott that Lonato circuit (if it is indeed owned by Corberi’s father who clearly attacked the kid)
      3) Ippolito should press criminal charges, considering that he is only 16 and both of his assaulters are adults.

      It is surprising that the team Tony Kart did not issue any statement condemning this behavior. Drivers have been sacked for less and their lack of response on such matter, which is now known to all, is troubling.

      This type of behavior cannot be forgiven and I really hope that the FIA will make an example of this guy.

      1. @arhn

        24-year-old Paolo Ippolito

        but still criminal behavior.

        1. My bad, I didn’t get my facts right and saw 16 yo on two different sources without making a research. But still, I would press charges.

      2. @arhn Lawyers may be involved, especially now the FIA has launched an official investigation. That would prevent Tony Kart from saying much of anything, especially as this was a one-off contract and it therefore can’t do anything like sack/suspend/meaningfully discipline Luca.

        1. It’s a possible reason indeed. But because the videos have become viral, this silence is not helping the team’s image, especially when you see that one person wearing the team’s jacket was trying to punch Ippolito. Clearly, Tony Kart cannot remain silent too long and needs to issue a statement as soon as possible…

    27. What Luca did was the most disgraceful and disrespectful thing I’ve ever seen.

    28. They definitely won’t get a lifetime ban. They are simply too privileged for that. Maybe a race ban and fine at the most.

      But just imagine if someone like Lewis Hamilton and his father did this whilst racing karts as rank outsiders who didn’t own any track?

      This question is intended to present a hypothetical situation where the key word is “imagine”.

      I think people will be calling for their heads on a stake right now.

    29. A lifetime ban is way over the top. 3 race weekend ban and a fine would suffice.

    30. Surely the police should be involved in this, two adults assaulting a minor, plenty of evidence, open and shut. A lifetime ban should just be the beginning for these thugs.

    Comments are closed.