Eddie Irvine gets jail term over brawl

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FORMER Formula One racing driver Eddie Irvine has been sentenced to six months in jail in Italy over a brawl in a nightclub in Milan.

Irvine, 48, from Northern Ireland, is not thought likely to have to serve any time in prison because sentences do not usually come into effect until the appeals process has been exhausted and they are usually suspended with such short terms, the Italian news agency Ansa reported.

Gabriele Moratti, 35, son of former Milan mayor Letizia Moratti, was also given six months over their altercation, which happened in December 2008.

The pair are said to have come to blows in the Hollywood disco over a text message allegedly sent by Irvine to a woman who had just ended a relationship with Moratti.

They subsequently reported each other to the authorities, which led to a trial for injury in a case which lasted nearly three years.

It was reported that Irvine and Moratti were found guilty of “mutual injury”.

The pair reportedly blamed each other for the dispute that took place in the VIP section of the club.

Both accused the other of using a glass during the incident.

Irvine’s professional racing career began in 1983 and he progressed to Formula Three racing in 1988, before moving on to Formula 3000 in 1989.

Irvine raced for Italian glamour team Ferrari in Formula One from 1996 to 1999. He also drove for Jordan and Jaguar over a nine-year career in motor racing’s most prestigious sport.