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F1 in a twist over team orders

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Jonathan Legard | 13:09 UK time, Friday, 30 July 2010

In Hungary

Formula 1 is in a fix. Over team orders. To keep the ban as it is or bin it - that's the question.

Or is there a middle way that would see the sport's law-makers provide a clarification that would specify precisely the circumstances when a team would be allowed to apply team orders and when they wouldn't?

Over the last two days here at the Hungaroring, I've canvassed opinion among leading members of teams in the pit-lane - team principals, team managers, technical directors and managing directors - who, it has to be said, all have their own agendas and specific team interests.

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The first finding to report is that nobody has a ready-made solution!

Significantly, the issue wasn't even on the agenda at Wednesday's meeting of the Formula 1 Teams' Association's Sporting Regulations Working Group. It was suggested, in the wake of the furore at last weekend's German Grand Prix that it should be discussed, but it wasn't added.

An overwhelming majority of the figures I consulted believed that Ferrari deserved further punishment.

And the majority view was that most suitable penalty, in addition to their $100,000 fine, was the loss of Ferrari's 43 points in the constructors' championship at Hockenheim.
The drivers, however, would retain theirs.

"How can you impose a really strict penalty for an offence that we all know the teams commit?" said one team executive.

Some thought a suspended race ban should also apply but, perhaps surprisingly, there was no call for another much heavier fine in line with the punishment handed out in 2002 after Ferrari's conduct at the Austrian Grand Prix.

Then, there was no rule outlawing team orders but the FIA imposed the $1m sanction because they ruled that the podium incident involving Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello had brought the sport into disrepute.

The only unanimous view I came across in all discussions is that rule needed to be clarified because team orders have always been, and will always be part of the fabric of F1.

So, if that's the case, surely it would make most sense for the sport to erase article 39.1 and allow team orders.

That would mean fans, the media and the authorities would know what to expect and there wouldn't be the outrage that surrounded last weekend's result.

"No", said one team principal. "There needs to be a deterrent. Otherwise you'll have another Austria 2002 when there was no ban on team orders yet Ferrari made the sport look stupid."

Support for that opinion came from one of the pit-lane's most experienced technical directors, who cited three examples of team orders which reflected what's acceptable and what is not.

"When (Felipe) Massa helped (Kimi) Raikkonen to victory in Brazil in 2007, and as a result the title, that was entirely understandable, entirely right," my source said.

"Massa couldn't win the title but his team-mate could. It was the last race of the season. And Ferrari explained it properly.

"Austria 2002 was blatantly wrong. It was only the sixth race of the season and Schumacher was already well ahead in the championship. He had no need for assistance.

"Then you had Hockenheim last weekend, and that's somewhere in the middle of the range. Alonso was clearly quicker and is their best bet for the championship.

"What made it so messy was the way Ferrari handled things after the race. It was a farce. They treated the public so stupidly."

But given the current ban, how else could Ferrari explain the Massa-Alonso switch, without openly admitting they had broken the rules?

As it is, another senior technical director believes the stewards got it wrong in Hockenheim.

He claims a more meaningful, damaging penalty for Ferrari would have been a 10-second time penalty for Alonso, which would have relegated him from first to third, promoting Massa to victory.

None of the people I've spoken to this week thought Ferrari got it right in Germany - and yet privately all will tell you that their biggest offence was not imposing the order on Massa but carrying it out so blatantly.

As one team official put it bluntly: "It comes down to how well we can cheat the fans, because if we do it well, under this current rule, nobody knows."

When I pressed for a form of words or a mechanism that allowed for team orders in certain circumstances, only in the final third of the season as some have suggested, nobody had a recommendation.

The same source indicated that drafting the sporting regulations could become a legal minefield with officials challenging the scope of the rule - "interfering with the race result" - in the same way that engineers challenge the technical regulations.

"Everything we do can interfere with the race result. What about the Red Bull front wing at Silverstone, for example? Only for Vettel, not for Webber."

Prompted by a leading technical director, I checked out the 1998 ruling from the World Motor Sport Council following McLaren switch between David Coulthard and Mika Hakkinen at the Australian Grand Prix that year.

The FIA verdict read as follows: "It is perfectly legitimate for a team to decide that one of its drivers is the championship contender and the other will support him.

"What is not acceptable in the world council's view is any arrangement which interferes with the race and cannot be justified by the relevant team's interest in the championship."

This ruling stood until the end of 2002 when the ban was imposed.

As discussed in Andrew Benson's blog after the race on Sunday, there's a contradiction in F1 over team orders.

It's not so much what the teams do, it's how they do it.

In that context, it's hardly surprising that Ferrari president Luca di Montezemolo would criticise the sport's "hypocrisy".

While the teams continue to believe in their unwritten rule which flies in the face of the official ruling, this latest controversy surely will not be the last.

And if the World Council isn't going to meet until 10 September - the Friday of the Italian Grand Prix, of all days - it guarantees that we'll all be watching the action even more closely.


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  • 1. At 3:49pm on 30 Jul 2010, F1-Viewpoint wrote:

    Everybody does it, it's just Ferrari managed and staged it really badly which made things a lot worse for them

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  • 2. At 3:52pm on 30 Jul 2010, mclarenteam wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 3. At 3:53pm on 30 Jul 2010, mclarenteam wrote:

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  • 4. At 3:55pm on 30 Jul 2010, lucabiason wrote:

    Rather than "interfering with the race result", team-orders that "blatantly bring the sport into disrepute" ought to be heavily penalised. It's the lesser of an intrinsic hypocrisy within the sport.

    Jonathan, can I state here that I do not enjoy your commentary?

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  • 5. At 3:56pm on 30 Jul 2010, redsilver wrote:

    I do not see why Alonso should suffer a 10 seconds penalty for this. I could understand that Ferrari would get some kind of penalty if it is decided that they did not respect the famous rule, but then you need to prove that Alonso knew about those orders otherwise you cannot penalise the driver for the team's actions -- it would even make more sense that Massa is penalised for following orders. But I do not think any further penalties will be imposed unless Alonso leads the Championship when the council meets.

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  • 6. At 3:56pm on 30 Jul 2010, F1owen wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 7. At 4:00pm on 30 Jul 2010, ANdyCapp wrote:

    The Drivers Championship is worthless when you have team orders. So better to just have a Constructors championship, then there's no problem.

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  • 8. At 4:06pm on 30 Jul 2010, Auntie Noo wrote:

    My confusion is more that Massa now says he is no way No.2 driver, yet surely he put himself in a position whereby people would think he was and that he accepted that. I think teams should have to declare, at any point during the season, when a driver is effectively/numerically no.2 And only then would they be allowed to issue team orders. I don't think the drivers would like it, but it would appease the fans somewhat as we would know what to expect.

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  • 9. At 4:09pm on 30 Jul 2010, gibson1972 wrote:

    All this brings bad bad memories of when Michael Schumacher dominated F1 and when he did that it almost put me of the sport.

    I'm sorry but what is a $100,000 (£65,000) fine going to do? Alonso will probably make that doing a lap or 2 in a race and Ferrari surely make that in about a car sale (in profit at least).

    What they should have done is give victory to Massa and demote Alonso to 2nd place and dock Ferrari constructors points for that race as well as give them a greater fine (perhaps £500,000)!

    But at the World Council meeting on the Friday of the Italian GP, they may discuss it but they won't increase the punishment. They will be too scared to; besides with Jean Todt in such a powerful position in motor sport, he dare not critise Ferrari as they did it when he was running Ferrari when Michael Schuacher reigned supreme.

    In fact, he may allow the re-introduction of team orders in the sport.

    Besides if Ferrari get a severe punishment, they may threaten to pull out and the FIA will not want that.

    Sadly, I think Ferrari have too much power in the sport and it will be seen again.

    Apart from the fans, I feel sorry for Felipe Massa who has obeyed team orders and clearly loves the team. But his name is being dragged by obeying orders from the Ferrari command.

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  • 10. At 4:09pm on 30 Jul 2010, StopPoliticalCorrectness wrote:

    Scrap the Driver's championship, and the teams and drivers have very clearly shown it has no value. Or have the team championship as the main title, and whichever of the two drivers in the team has the most points, podiums, scariest cartoon jaw or eyebrows etc, should win a special driver's championship !

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  • 11. At 4:11pm on 30 Jul 2010, jezzar wrote:

    Is it just me or is it just depressing that the only man in a red car to actually carry out a successful overtaking manouvre is then told to move over for the other one who couldn't make it stick?

    Its all very well talking about teams but out on the track it is individuals. Alonso did not demonstrate the ability to overtake his team mate so moans and lo and behold later gets the green light to cheat his team mate off a first place he deserved. No one criticised Senna or Schumacher for preventing overtaking in the past it was considered a skill but not these days

    Ecclestone is already ripping the sould from the 'sport' with moving it to countries which will pay for the hnour but have no fans to make any atmosphere. Why don't we just remove the competitive element on the track as well and just pay trained monkeys to watch instead, the fans are obviosuly that unimportant to all concerned.

    I also find it strange that media outlets and commentators will one moment talk about competition and excitement then the next minute talk about accepting team orders and their boring consequences. I would love to hear how the BBC justifies their expenditure on this obviously now uncompetitve sport whilst continuing to ignore other sports where this important element is actually respected.

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  • 12. At 4:13pm on 30 Jul 2010, AnalMcAnal wrote:

    I personally would get rid of the rule - there are so many grey areas that i don't see how it can effectively be policed without massive controversy.

    I say let the teams/drivers choose what tactics to employ and if the fans don't like it we'll vote with our feet.

    I don't personally have a big problem with what Ferrari did but they way they did it left me feeling like they'd insulted my intelligence.

    Perhaps a compromise might be to say that team orders are only allowed after a certain point in the season or maybe even when one driver can't mathematically win the drivers championship.

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  • 13. At 4:19pm on 30 Jul 2010, Kev Todd wrote:

    If Team Orders are allowed, it opens up a Minefield of Blatent Cheating, instead of any crafty stunts that the teams pull at the minute.

    You could end up with a situation at the end of a season, that a driver is told to wait (stop) before crossing the finish line, because of the way the points are stacked, to allow his teammate to win the championship.

    There is the other issue of all those (silly) people who spend their hard-earned cash betting on the outcome of races. I can imagine a lot of very angry people who had bet on Massa to win, only for it to be stolen away from them by a Ferarri Team Principal (who, lets not forget, might have had a bet on himself) !!

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  • 14. At 4:26pm on 30 Jul 2010, TuskinRaider wrote:

    I have no problem with team orders if the "no 2" driver mathamatically cannot win the championship. Any team will benefit greatly by having both the constructors championship and a driver winning the drivers championship.

    Also, I don't believe that telling drivers to hold station rather than race each other is team orders as it reduces the possibility of them crashing and stopping the team from getting points (aka Red Bull). At the end of the day, it's the team that should come first but not at the expense of one of the drivers by distroying their chance to win the championship.

    As for no one complaining that Ferrari swapped Massa and Kimi so Kimi one the 2007 championship - I complained. I wanted Hamilton to win and felt he was cheated. Then again, I think Kimi is a storming racer and new that he had the talent to win the championship.

    Will Alonso be asked to move out the way if Massa is faster and has a better chance of gaining more point for the "team" I wonder???

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  • 15. At 4:30pm on 30 Jul 2010, BajanGerry wrote:

    I don't get this at all, Formula 1 is a TEAM sport is it not? Therefore what is best for the team must be the priority must it not?

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  • 16. At 4:32pm on 30 Jul 2010, sportmadgav wrote:

    I think that "team official" summed it up perfectly, it depends on how well you can cheat the fans!

    Is that really what we want in sports, what message does it send to kids...isn't that what's rife in football and resulted in the worst world cup for years.

    Just be honest, it's a team sport, team orders apply. Teams plough an enormous amount of resources into this sport, why is it wrong that they get the credit when they win?

    If the driver is the most important issue, give them all the same car.

    If you want the combination of driver and constructor, it's 1 car per team.

    If the constructor is the most important have 2 cars or more and team orders.

    But you cannot mix and match these principles. I think that everyone who works in the sport knows it is all about the constructor, it is the public that still believes that the driver's championship is the most important.

    The FIA has to decide which is the best fit for their sport, but this current rule is absurd.

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  • 17. At 4:35pm on 30 Jul 2010, TonyB wrote:

    What I can't figure out is why this is not illegal (never mind the FIA) - it's tantamount to match-fixing or race-fixing in other sports which incur the attention of the boys in blue. DC's analogy of the football team manager picking his players doesn't hold water - that's done before the event. This happened 'in-play'.

    I had a couple of quid on Massa & Alonso and what Ferrari did actually worked in my favour - but that doesn't make it right! Massa was 16-1 for the win. Imagine if you could afford to bet £100 or even £1000 on him and you're sitting there watching Ferrari effectively ensuring that you can't win.

    That's simply not right.

    There are too many well-heeled players in this game who think they ought to be allowed to make the rules to suit themselves.

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  • 18. At 4:38pm on 30 Jul 2010, scotrafferty wrote:

    How dare people criticise Ferrari?

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  • 19. At 4:43pm on 30 Jul 2010, CycloneArmageddon wrote:

    "The first finding to report is that nobody has a ready-made solution!"

    Err... how about allowing it?

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  • 20. At 4:49pm on 30 Jul 2010, LJ wrote:

    I personally wish them to become stricter on team orders. Massa thouroughly deserved his victory in Germany and it feels like the big bully (Ferrari) stole his candy so to speak. The whole excuse that "Alonso was faster" was nonsense. Because even after the switch Alonso wasn't pulling away despite Massa slowing down to give the illusion for the FIA.

    The teams need to focus on their own championship (constructors) and stop meddling with the drivers championship. The teams have to respect what the fans want which is no team orders and a fair fight for wins. We don't like to see drivers win by gifts.

    Lastly, I just wonder if Massa had won a WDC in 2008 whether he would have allowed Alonso to overtake..

    P.S. Jonathan, you should stick to writing articles which are interesting and informative and quit your day job.

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  • 21. At 4:49pm on 30 Jul 2010, Geoff wrote:

    Once a driver can no longer mathematically win the championship he can then support his team-mate if he can win the championship.
    Solves the issues as at the end of the season the team can back one driver, unless both there drivers can win of course!
    It was way too early in the season to back one driver.

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  • 22. At 4:49pm on 30 Jul 2010, Riggadon wrote:

    I agree with Legards un-named source, that orders are acceptable if for example there are only a few races left and whoever's in front of the race cant win the championship....that to me is perfectly acceptable.

    So for me, its not a question of how do you do it, but when. You can do it as blatantly as you like in my book as long as its in the right context and at the right time.

    In this case though, I disagree that this particular time its in the middle of the range. I think it's just as bad as 2002. We're talking about the middle of the season (almost exactly) where both drivers involved still have a mathematical chance. That to me is not "middle of the range" thats as bad as 2002.

    The argument that "everybody does it so its okay" does'nt stack up. I'm not even justifying that with a reply.

    Bottom line, its in the rules clearly. You dont just interpret which rules you're going to follow and which ones your going to bend. If you cant follow rules to the letter then you must be punished. There's a lot of talk trying to dilute this argument, saying that the rule is unworkable and should be scrapped but thats just dishonesty at it worst and its something I've come to expect from those involved in the sport - it's an attempt to sidestep the issue at hand, which was that a written rule in black and white was blatantly broken.

    No amount of justification should be allowed to dilute that. I am expecting Ferrari to lose their constructors points from that weekend at the very least. If that does'nt happen as a minimum requiremnt, then Formula 1 loses a long time watcher. I am already disillusioned with the way aero grip robs us of real racing but was willing to carry on watching because its in my nature, the sport is part of my fabric and is not easily let go, but as with during the worst of the schumi years, the sport is getting more difficult to watch by the year.

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  • 23. At 4:50pm on 30 Jul 2010, Nevs_A_Red wrote:

    Ferrari broke the rules. end of story. there is no excuse, no "middle ground" or anything. To me, no matter how ou break the rules, the punishment should be the same. They may as well have told the FIA Alonso had to do one lap less than the other drivers.
    How anyone can defend it by saying - "it goes on in every team", is nonsense - how many times has one driver slowed down for his team mate to pass this season? NONE. Let alone been TOLD to slow down - no matter how cryptic the message, we all got it.

    You'd think with the money the Ferrari brass are on, they could have maybe used the fuel mixture's to make this work - turn massa's down a couple of notches, and let Alonso run on max. Just for a couple of laps. Alonso would have been through, Massa could have turned his back up to stay clear of Vettel, and nobody could have proved either way if it was valid or not! It's mystifying. What isnt a mystery is what they actually did. I say ban them for a race - before people say about punishing the team, not the drivers, the drivers should get punished, as they were both party to it!

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  • 24. At 4:56pm on 30 Jul 2010, Nevs_A_Red wrote:

    On another point - is it just me, or is this nonsense with teams not putting enough fuel in to get to the end of the race of major detriment to the races! You get 20 laps where the cars do nothing apart from go round and round in stasis - and not even on the edge, because the performance is affected. I would have this removed straight away - at least not allowing a way for drivers/teams to "turn down" the fuel usage. If the teams wnat to still carry on with less fuel than needed, then make the drivers skill make it work, instead of some stupid computerised gadget!!
    How much more exciting would the races be if the drivers were at 100% for every lap, or if their was a chance that any driver could not make it to the end if they didnt have the skill to manage their fuel and a gap to the guy behind.

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  • 25. At 4:58pm on 30 Jul 2010, Lonbridge wrote:

    I don't understand why one of your sources has suggested that the championship points are docked from Ferrari, but the drivers' points stay. It's the WDC that is the big farce in F1. If team orders are used, legitimately or otherwise, it's the WDC that is manipulated more than the WCC.
    I'm also shocked by the comment saying it's not about cheating the fans, but it's about how well they cheat them. However I'm not surprised by it after the comments from most F1 insiders this week. It's clear to me now that this is not a sport, and that the people who are involved in F1 have no intention of it ever being a sport. It's a money-making machine that relies on the stupidity of the fans to contribute to the jet-setting lifestyle of the insiders who live a safe isolated life in their tax havens and who must be wetting themselves laughing at how gullible the punters are.
    I didn't realise until the last few days that I was being taken for a fool. Now I do, I either want to see changes in F1, or I will stop watching. If they can't effectively police the ban on team orders, they must get rid of the WDC. There can be no middle ground.

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  • 26. At 5:06pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    I have a very simple and workable solution....

    Allow team orders, but have each team publish at the start of the season (and notify at the start of each race weekend if the situation has changed) what the conditions of team orders are within the team.

    Team Apple has a clear no1 and no2 driver, then they could say at any race No2 can/will be told to let No1 past if he is behind. Or that they are to slow down and impeed a chasing driver sacrificing their race for the 'good of the team'.

    Team Banana might have a policy where they will decide at a certain point in the season that a driver is out of the running for the title (with certain conditions) and from that point in the season the driver out of the running will/can be asked to support their team mate/ let him past.

    Team Grape might say we have 2 drivers and there are no team orders full stop end of story.

    This way we the fans will know what the score is at the start of the season and be able to support or not support teams according to our views on their take on team orders, drivers and teams will be able to get these conditions written into the contract so both know what the score is can act accordingly. The only other condition I would want applied is that team orders should come from the team manager or a designated other on the pit wall and should not be passed on by the driver engineer, also they should be clearly phrased as team orders over the radio so that all and sundry know what's going on.

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  • 27. At 5:06pm on 30 Jul 2010, Mike wrote:

    How long would it take for a Spectator/Viewer boycott to improve F1's sporting behaviour? A boycott is a form of consumer activism involving the act of voluntarily abstaining from using, buying, or dealing with a person, organization, or country as an expression of protest.

    A rule was broken and the penalty was pathetic given Ferraris contempt for the Sport.

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  • 28. At 5:07pm on 30 Jul 2010, LeighJW wrote:

    Wouldn't the fairest outcome just be to reverse te first two place?

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  • 29. At 5:08pm on 30 Jul 2010, Ce La Vie wrote:

    Re: #9

    I cannot agree with anyone who says Massa should be promoted to race winner. He's as guilty as anyone, as while it was a team order, it is one he chose to obey.

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  • 30. At 5:11pm on 30 Jul 2010, roaring wrote:

    It seems that the problem exists because there are two different championships, both using the same scoring system. Would there not be less cause for team orders if the Constructors Championship was based on a different points scoring system? I know it's F1, so probably being logical isn't a good idea but I would propose this:

    Drivers Championship continues with scoring as it is.
    Constructors Championship is based on the lowest combined score taken from the placing in the Drivers Championship. So if the season finished today, McLaren with have a combined score of 3 (1st and 2nd place in Drivers) and Red Bull 7 (3rd and 4th place). Ferrari would not have had reason to handover the points to Alonso in the last race, because Massa would have been able to improve his position in the Drivers Championship by getting the 25 points.

    As you will never eliminate Team Orders completely, this system would provide more incentive for teams to get both their drivers as high as possible up the Drivers Championship.

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  • 31. At 5:14pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    Following on from post 26, hit post when I mean to hit preview *DOH*

    This way teams would be given the freedom to run their team as they see fit and if they see the team as more important than the drivers then thats their position, and if they found they couldn't attract the type of sponsorship or no2 driver they wanted then they would have to find ways to deal with it. If a team was prepared to risk loosing out on a championship because they wanted to be seen as being more 'sportsman like' in regard to their drivers (or needed to to keep 2 world champions in their team happy) then thats their choice as well....

    The idea of having the FIA get its hands in this and try and decide when it is and isn't acceptable is just daft, its a recipe for argument and accusations of interference down the road so I feel they should just demand transparency and honesty from the teams and then let the teams get on and do what they do anyway.

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  • 32. At 5:14pm on 30 Jul 2010, Phillip Harben wrote:

    Team orders are almost impossible to detect, that is why Ferrari has gotten so much bad press as it was extremely clumsily done. Think back to last year and before. If you had two drivers running 1st and 2nd and wanted them to change position, simply "fluff" the pitstop by a few seconds and that should ensure the result you want.

    Any number of code phrases can be brought into play: "save fuel" "adjust brake bias rearward" etc. The normal viewer would be none the wiser.

    I hate team orders, but they can be impossible to detect if done properly. Make them transparent and allow them. Then the viewers will know and their intelligence won't be insulted. As another poster said earlier, make the teams nominate their 1 and 2 drivers and then no one will be unpleasantly surprised.

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  • 33. At 5:16pm on 30 Jul 2010, Deano68 wrote:

    There is a time and a place for team orders as Legards suggests, Team orders should only be allowed if one of a teams drivers has a chance at the championship and the other has not.

    What happened on Sunday was a disgrace and has no part in F1.

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  • 34. At 5:16pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    28. At 5:07pm on 30 Jul 2010, LeighJW wrote:

    Wouldn't the fairest outcome just be to reverse te first two place?

    No, because then you would be rewarding Massa for breaking the regs. His actions in letting Alonso past at the behest of a poorly coded message from the pits are the ones that broke the rules, yes Ferrari where the ones to get Rob to tell Massa to let him past, but Massa did it. The fairest outcome would be to strip Ferrari and both drivers from the race it would also send the clearest message that teams are not allowed to break the existing regs.

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  • 35. At 5:22pm on 30 Jul 2010, JOC wrote:

    Jonathan, The statement in your article perfectly explains why F1 is so confused.

    "So, if that's the case, surely it would make most sense for the sport to erase article 39.1 and allow team orders. That would mean fans, the media and the authorities would know what to expect and there wouldn't be the outrage that surrounded last weekend's result."

    The entire reason for the introduction of the rule was public outrage and people would be outraged by last weekend, rule or no rule. The public are not outraged by breaking of a rule, but by the action itself.

    Given that even among the top 3 teams, that superiority of one car over the others can result in us not being able to see FA, LH, and SV race each other, we still get to see SV race MW, LH race JB and if it were not for the arrogance of Ferarri, FA race FM. Given that 100 mins of an F1 race can be pretty dull, it is the 5-20mins of action that make it worth the time I have wasted watching it for 30 years.

    If FM had told SD & LdM to stuff it, and raced FM he would have been a hero, even if he had lost the fight! If FM had raced him he would be in much higher standing than he is now.

    The argument from some of the people in the sport that "we all cheat the rule but try to do it so no one notices" is preposterous. I would also draw your attention to rule 20.1 "The driver must drive the car alone and unaided."

    If I were in charge I would give FA a one place demotion for Hockenheim, I would give Ferarri the opportunity to publicly apologize for their contemptuous behaviour or a 43point constructors point loss and I would clarify to the teams that interering in the racing between their two drivers and attempting to manipulate results will be punished in a punitive manner (meaning $$££) in any future incidents.

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  • 36. At 5:29pm on 30 Jul 2010, Alasdair wrote:

    "No", said one team principal. "There needs to be a deterrent. Otherwise you'll have another Austria 2002 when there was no ban on team orders yet Ferrari made the sport look stupid."

    Its time all the teams accepted once the cars are on track its down tot he driver and its meant to be a sport. The fact they even endlessly try to justify team interference in track action is what makes them all look stupid. Giving a driver new parts or old parts, when to pit etc.. all team choices and most fans can accept teams have been known to use some drivers as test pilots for new parts.
    Its meant to be a sport and even backing the pack up which happened a bit in Hockenheim to helpFA make a distance that appeared to have him as a faster driver should be getting called. Imagine if a stable owner or the UK olympics comitte asked there second fastest jockey or sprinter to make himself wide on the track and slow to a walking pace. As said elsewhere we wouldn't be worrying about the sporting regs as the police would already have taken action.
    The majority of the world does not follow formula 1 in fact a lot who I have to support it to comment on how it is a joke going round in circles with drivers not allowed to pass. From most of the contrversies I have to admit their right more often than I would like so if the drivers arent sportsmen trying to move their vehicles in a forward motion as fast as they can to get the chequered flag then IMHO it is worthless trying to retain any image it is a sport.

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  • 37. At 5:31pm on 30 Jul 2010, Alasdair wrote:

    I think this quote you got JL says it all.

    As one team official put it bluntly: "It comes down to how well we can cheat the fans, because if we do it well, under this current rule, nobody knows."

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  • 38. At 5:32pm on 30 Jul 2010, Pete S wrote:

    As someone has already mentioned, this fiasco flirts with the realms of legality!! For crying out loud just keep the rule, but to actually deter the teams from breaking the rule, hand out a rediculously harsh penalty if the rule is broken..... oh I don't know, maybe a years expulsion from the sport?!?! Like to see team risk those kinds of punishments.... PROBLEM SOLVED!!!!!

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  • 39. At 5:36pm on 30 Jul 2010, nocon wrote:

    My thoughts on team orders.
    At the middle race of the season ALL teams will have to NAME A NOS 1 DRIVER FOR THE REST OF THE SEASON.
    This would mean that drivers will race each other harder to be the better one in the team and championship points at mid season, and, once named NOS 1, will race hard to the championship`s end.
    It will make for better racing between drivers and perhaps more overtaking.
    This way Drivers and the public will know what`s happening from the start.
    Team orders would only apply then to position their drivers for a maximum points scoring position by both drivers.
    The Kudos of Best Team would still be decided on total points scored by both drivers.

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  • 40. At 5:39pm on 30 Jul 2010, Nice Face Shame About The Legs wrote:

    Does anyone seriously think that Jenson Button would have got the drive at McLren if the team hadn't known full well that - any time - they could tell him (albeit in a coded message) to move aside for their favourite son?

    Or that any team would ever again consider taking on two drivers of comparable talent?

    Or that Banco Santander would have pumped so much money into the Ferrari operation if Massa wasn't No.2 to the bank's compatriot?

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  • 41. At 5:42pm on 30 Jul 2010, enthusiast10 wrote:

    I enjoy your broadcasts but please will pronounce Vitaly Petrovs name correctly it does not rhyme with Italy it should be pronounced as if it were spelled Vitarly,this does grate and spoils an otherwise enjoyable programme.

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  • 42. At 5:44pm on 30 Jul 2010, redsilver wrote:

    34. At 5:16pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:
    > The fairest outcome would be to strip Ferrari and both drivers from the race

    Yes, and don't let them score any more points in the remaining races, as well as making Alonso write 1000 times 'there are no team orders in Ferrari' in the blackboard while Ferrari's engineers clean McLaren cars.

    It is all very fair and makes sense. I would really like that those anti-Ferrari, anti-Alonso and remaining anti-something could agreed on the penalty and a reason for it so that it could be refuted -- it is too hard with everyone asking for different things.

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  • 43. At 5:45pm on 30 Jul 2010, BillMitch wrote:

    I am suspicious of most 'big' businesses 'sportsmanship'. The two are strange bedfellows to say the least. Big business can rarely afford to be 'sportsmanlike'. It therefore comes as no surprise to me that Ferrari have made a supposed pigs ear of managing this incident. Big business does not get big by making pigs ears of management! Period, end of story. 'Big' business gets big by manipulating situations to their advantage, and they are very good at it as well as patient. I see a large degree of deliberate action in the way they handled the incident because I've been expecting someone to do something like this ever since the rule was put in place.

    Think about it - Ferrari want team orders, as do many others, although admitedly not all. They instigate a big incident about team orders. World Council reviews rules. And surprise, surprise, allow team orders again. Even if some type of restriction is imposed Ferrari can now manipulate as they must.

    You want transparency? Just look at how 'big' business is 'sportsmanlike'. This is so transparent its spooky. I am a McLaren fan but I have to admire them if this is at all true. Takes a lot of cahoonas.

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  • 44. At 5:48pm on 30 Jul 2010, Malcolm Harding wrote:

    My first ever Grand Prix was at Aintree in 1957. Stirling Moss's Vanwall retired and so team mate Tony Brooks was flagged into the pits to hand his car over to Moss who went on to win. In my books Ferrari did no wrong and the silly "no team orders" rule should be scrapped.

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  • 45. At 5:51pm on 30 Jul 2010, Nice Face Shame About The Legs wrote:

    The idea being propounded by some that team orders are all well and good at the end of the season but only then.

    I suggest that those of such a mind should track down Martin Brundle's recent piece.

    The points awarded in the final race are just the same as in the first, and if you wait until the end of the season to begin your tactical manoeuvres, it's almost certainly already too late.

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  • 46. At 6:03pm on 30 Jul 2010, Hugh C wrote:

    Re this part of Johnathan's piece: "team orders have always been, and will always be part of the fabric of F1.". That is what we constantly hear from the F1 insiders. Even the most sporting of people like DC say the same (Although to his credit he says that he doesn't like them). It is this fundamental belief that I want to challenge. Let us get this clear, the great majority of the fans hate team orders. They do not want them. It is seen (in the UK at least) as being unsportsmanlike and nothing short of cheating. Bear in mind that the British people as a race have a built in understanding of "fairness" that is defined by the word "sportsmanlike". Other countries like Germany and the USA believe in winning at all costs - and if that means cheating then so be it.
    My answer is to make the penalty for being caught cheating, sorry using team orders, to be severe. I am thinking here of the following:
    1st offence - all points gained in the race for both drivers and the team are removed
    2nd offence - team and drivers are removed from both championships until the next season, with no TV money given for the current season.
    3rd offence - the team is banned from F1 for 5 years
    4th offence - the team banned from F1 forever

    Obviously this would need to apply from the 2011 season but I do think that it would be much more effective than the current method of taking each offence on its (de) merits. It would also mean the everyone would know where they stood.

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  • 47. At 6:03pm on 30 Jul 2010, BillMitch wrote:

    Just had a thought.

    How about this - The Points from each race can be either submitted for WDC or WCC but not both. By the end of the season each team must have an equal number of submissions per driver. Scrap the team orders rule.

    Submissions are declared at each quarter of the season.

    Should be fun!

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  • 48. At 6:09pm on 30 Jul 2010, charlie wrote:

    would it be too difficult to make the point system such that 2 drivers from the same team finishing one behind the other, that the team would recieve the points as at present but the drivers would both recieve the points of the leading car. dont think team orders are wrong,but this might remove a lot of the controversy.

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  • 49. At 6:11pm on 30 Jul 2010, thefrogstar wrote:

    My solution works on an "assumption of guilt" as far as team orders are concerned. If a Team's cars finish a race "together" then they could be awarded an average of points for the two positions. Alternatiively, rank them according to their qualifying times.

    Either seems quite fair to me, and cover most situations that arise in practice. It removes most of the ability, and the incentive, for "team mates" to pretend to be competing with each other during a race, when everybody knows they are not.

    The cameras, the viewers, and the advertising sponsors can then focus on the cars that are competing with each other.

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  • 50. At 6:14pm on 30 Jul 2010, KevBrown wrote:

    Some sort of rule needs to be in place.

    How many championships would Schumacher have won if his team mates had been allowed to race him?

    The year he broke his leg Eddie Ervine would have taken the championship if not for team orders. To deny one driver the chance of reaching the pinacle of the sport in favour of his team mate is unfair and unjust.

    What most seem to forget is that this is not just one championship but two and teams have to do whats right for them. In the case of the German result Ferrari gained no extra points because of the switch. This makes it a simple case of the team saying "we are backing Alonso". I feel certain that the Ferrari team would callously drop Massa if he went against team orders. Would he get another ride for this season or even next if this happened "NO". He had no choice but to give way.

    Punish the team, with a loss of points, allow them to race, give points to the drivers but none to the team. It's been done before. It would have a detrimental effect on the team but would at least give the drivers involved a chance to race. And reverse the positions from last race for Massa and Alonso.

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  • 51. At 6:19pm on 30 Jul 2010, Matthew Greening wrote:

    Is anyone really surprised at the scarlet peril. Jean Todt's appointment was a affirmation of the Ferrari International Assistance (FIA) joke. The only thing is that the Massa Alonso stunt wasn't funny. I won't hold my breath for any further punishment, I wouldn't put it passed the FIA saying the punishment was too strict and giving the fine back.

    What I havn't seen a comment of, is how Ferrari's sponsors must feel being associated with a brand that represents cheating.

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  • 52. At 6:27pm on 30 Jul 2010, everliving wrote:

    Whilst its obvious that the current rule doesnt work, that doesnt mean there shouldnt be one. Where the sport has really gone wrong was the inept punishement of Ferarri for blatently breaking it. That has effectively sent a message to all teams that breaking this rule will not result in loss of points in either the constructors or drivers championship, only a tiny fine. Removing the rule would have the same result.
    To ensure the sport remains good to watch and for the benefit of the fans (surely that is most important?), the rule should be tightened. perhaps something like..."Team orders which result in the uncompetitive overtaking of one car by a car of the same team, within the confines of the Track, are prohibited". Not perfect but the sentiment is there. This would allow teams to favour one driver in terms of providing the better car components ( e.g. Vettel, Webber), and manipulate pit stop strategy to achieve the the desired result. However it would not blatantly cheat the fans from a battle on the track. In this latest example, Alonso would have known he had to get past Massa to win as there were no more stops left. Ferrari would not have brought Massa into the pits as they would not have ended with a 1-2.
    The major problem to this is the enforcement. Ferrari said that it was Massa's decision to allow Alonso past, and that was true and always will be if the overtake occurs. The message to the driver may not always be as blatant as it was last weekend, but it can get through and then it is down to the driver. If he chooses to let his team mate past, has the team broken any rule?
    I'd agree that theres no easy fix, but to retain the spectacle of the sport must be the priority. This can only happen if instances like we have recently witnessed are banned.

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  • 53. At 6:30pm on 30 Jul 2010, Ridge wrote:

    I think Rule 39 should remain & that Ferrari should have received a bigger fine & lost all of their points - both for the drivers and the constructors! What they did last Sunday was a blatant disregard of the rules. I bet if any other team had done this Ferrari would be the first team to complain!

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  • 54. At 6:31pm on 30 Jul 2010, JMH wrote:

    There are two seperate arguments here.

    The first is a simple one. Ferrari broke the rules and deserve to be punished. End of.

    The second is the question of the team orders rule. I can fully understand in a championship fight if one driver moves over for his team-mate; I think in a situation such as 2007, Massa was probably happy to do it to help his friend win the WDC. Same in 2008 with Kovalainen and Hamilton. In 2002, it was wrong. Barichello's win was stolen from him, pure and simple. At least Schumi did the right thing (and got fined) by letting Rubens take the top step on the podium. How Ferrari then can have the audacity to break that rule so blatantly is beyond me.

    Keep the current ruling, but give more penalties for on-track orders. 1st offence, a fine. 2nd offence, points deduction. 3rd offence, 2 race ban. the system runs for two year stints, so that 3 offences over 2 years equals a 2 race ban.

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  • 55. At 6:40pm on 30 Jul 2010, Andi3d wrote:

    *laughs* Montezemelo accuses F1 of hypocrisy....and who was crying a couple of weeks ago, about the race result being "manipulated" by the stewards and the safety car? The irony (and hypocrisy of his own) is delicous.

    As for last weeks discrageful affair, i totally disagree that Alonso 'deserved' to win. Massa got in the lead and stayed in the lead a race, thats what deserves to win.

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  • 56. At 6:55pm on 30 Jul 2010, monial wrote:

    So basicly what Ferrari and most of F1 people and comentators are telling us, is that Formula one is business and everyone who thinks diferently is stupid ?
    I beg to differ. It is called sport and there are sport regulators and institutions that F1 belongs to.
    If Ferrari and others don't like it, they can alaways make up their own "racing bussines" and do whatever they like with their drivers and cars.
    If somebody (which happened to be all the helpless people in F1) tells me that it is better to scrap unforcable rule, not fix it than to throw away the crook I must tell them, get a grip and start thinking about the sport. F1 become such a joke that not many is prepared to take part in it.

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  • 57. At 7:06pm on 30 Jul 2010, Russell wrote:

    I always thought there's a seperate drivers and constructors championship for a reason.

    The "team" aspect should not interfere with the drivers championship unless it is actually an impossibility for one of the drivers to win the championship.

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  • 58. At 7:11pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @56 the question is is it a team sport or an individual driver sport? If its a team sport then the team should be free to decide what is the best usage of its drivers to obtain team objectives. If its a sport of individual drivers then how do you police and enforce that?

    When it came to germany its blatantly obvious that Ferrari broke the rules when they breached the reg by giving Massa a poorly coded message to let Alonso past, and as such they should be punished (I would disqualify Ferrari and both drivers from that GP and stick them with a massive fine for the team and a hand slap fine for both drivers because they were both obeying team orders).

    For the future I think you have to bow to reality, it is a team sport. Allow team orders but have them clear to the drivers and public before the season starts with clarifications coming as and when required (see my post 26 for more details and examples of my thoughts), and team orders should only be given by the team boss or a designated other (never the engineer) and should be clearly stated as team orders. I wouldn't want the FIA to get any more involved than making the respective teams position transparent and adjudging any subsequent disputes that will no doubt arise, lets forget this idea of talking about oh its acceptable X races from the end, or when a driver is mathematically out of contention because all that will do is create grey areas for further confusion and controversy.

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  • 59. At 7:13pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @57 - its not that simple thou... teams want to win championships... sometimes they can only compete for one and not the other... its going to take a miracle for Ferrari to be competing for the constructors this year, but Alonso was/is in with an outside chance of winning the drivers.

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  • 60. At 7:15pm on 30 Jul 2010, Russell wrote:

    If it's mathematically possible for Massa to win (and it is) then Ferrari should not interfere.

    And if Alonso is the faster driver, let them race for position.

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  • 61. At 7:34pm on 30 Jul 2010, sportmadgav wrote:

    I would scrap the rule and let drivers work as a team. It can be just as interesting. I think that 2 drivers from the same team racing each other flat out is stupid eg: Red Bull.

    You can't tell me that Button vs Hamilton was enjoyable.

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  • 62. At 7:55pm on 30 Jul 2010, sportmadgav wrote:

    I agree with Cordas @58 and 59. I'm not so sure that publicizing a teams orders is necessary.

    But all the ideas of "mathematically impossible" and "not allowed to change track position" are just going to make it worse. Teams will start manipulating pit stops during races, falsify nose cone changes or whatever is necessary to get there drivers where they want them. Over the course of a season it may become "in their interests" to have 1 driver not finish races in the first half of the season so that it quickly becomes "mathematically impossible".

    Bottom line, with 2 cars it is a team sport. Let them work as a team. If the public prefer individuals have 1 car per team but for me these are the only workable solutions.

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  • 63. At 8:07pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    "... a more meaningful, damaging penalty for Ferrari would have been a 10-second time penalty for Alonso, which would have relegated him from first to third, promoting Massa to victory."

    Yeah right!! Who said that, Ron Dennis?

    who followed team orders? Massa.
    Who decided to let Fernado pass? Massa.
    Who had the choice and did it anyway? Massa
    and you thing a more meaningful penalty would be to give Massa the victory?



    Jonathan, I can not believe the amount of contradiction there is in the F1 and in your article. In one hand they are all saying that Ferrari must have more penalties:

    -"An overwhelming majority of the figures I consulted believed that Ferrari deserved further punishment."

    and in the other hand they all think that everybody gives team orders:

    -" ..because team orders have always been, and will always be part of the fabric of F1."

    Can anyone be more hypocritical?


    I think there is only one person guilty of what happen last Sunday, he is not Brazilian, Italian or Spanish, he is Mr. Smedley. When he told Massa

    -"Good lad. Just stick with it now. Sorry."

    I though, what? good lad he said?? GOOD LAD??!! what a thing to say!! That is what you say to your 5y/o son, or to your dog, not to F1 driver that is risking his live, and definitely is not what you say to someone that just did something that can get him into trouble.

    I think Ferrari need to have a chad with Mr Smedley.


    Solutions for the team orders issue?
    I would let teams give team orders but only in the last, let's say, 5 races of the season. I wouldn't over complicate the rule.

    I would give the penalty money back to Ferrari and then change the rules, like when LH was helped with a crane or when LH was driving erratically behind the SC, FIA changed the rules after the events and let him get away with it.

    So be it.

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  • 64. At 8:31pm on 30 Jul 2010, jennycclass wrote:

    I'm an ardent Alonso fan but was left very uncomfortable with his pyre victory last Sunday. I feel that he is capable of winning this year's title on his own merit.
    Either it has to be accepted that F1 is a team sport and allow team orders in which case, as mentioned already, the championship should be shared by both drivers of the winning team or if it is to enjoy both a drivers championship and a constructors championship then each team should employ just one driver and use their test driver as a reserve. This latter option would cut the cost of F1 for the teams dramatically.

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  • 65. At 8:50pm on 30 Jul 2010, GoJonnyGoGoGoGo wrote:

    one car,one team,no team orders then simples!

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  • 66. At 8:59pm on 30 Jul 2010, matt1969james wrote:

    What I want to know is Who is going to pay up on the bet I had on Massa?! At the end of the day weather you agree with team orders or not is the plain fact the Ferrari fixed the race, nothing more nothing less!

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  • 67. At 9:06pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    May be Massa would pay that bet, at the end of the day nobody put a gun in his head to let Fernando pass. Next time bet for the faster man.

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  • 68. At 9:12pm on 30 Jul 2010, Mick wrote:

    I find it hard to take that people are actually calling for this sort of thing to be allowed. If it's a team sport, then why have 2 cars and a driver's championship?
    If the emphasis on team sport is so great then (in a similar vein to jennycclass; comment #64) have a pit stop half way through the race with a driver change. 1 car 2 drivers.
    When it comes to qualifying, it's the driver that gets the fastest time that starts the race from pole. It would give each driver the incentive, as well as the sense of responsibility to give their best efforts to help the team.
    No driver should be forced to forgo his chance at the title just to stop his team mate from littering the track with broken toys.

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  • 69. At 9:15pm on 30 Jul 2010, E Warrender wrote:

    Team orders, what team orders? Although we love to see true racing between team drivers, you can't stop team orders... remember Ronnie Peterson was obviously quicker than Andretti, yet he had to play second fiddle - Every team does it, Alonso is quicker than Massa and a more complete driver no-matter what anyone says, it was the right decision on the day!

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  • 70. At 9:18pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @61 - The problem in Turkey wasn't 2 team mates racing each other, it was that one team mate jinked into the side of the other and caused an accident. As for who enjoyed seeing the McLaren team mates racing each other... millions of F1 fans I suspect - you are the only person who I know who has said that they didn't HUGELY enjoy seeing that (well apart from maybe Whitmarsh briefly).

    @62 - I just think that keeping it all out in open will make it better and more obvious (and less likely to be done frivolously such as the 2002 incident between Schumi and Rubens), what happened last weekend was understandable from Ferrari's perspective even if it was against the rules.

    I don't agree with your last comment, as its both a team and a driver sport trying to say its one or the other just doesn't make much sense to me. I can't think of any motor sport where teams only run 1 car.

    @63 - Sorry but do you think Rob Smedley gave the instruction off his own back because he wanted his driver not to win? Because i think he gave the instruction under huge amounts of duress I have never heard Rob sound so downbeat as he did when he gave that instruction to Massa or the pit radio we heard later in the race... even when Massa had his horrific accident he didn't sound THAT unhappy.

    As for rewriting the team orders rule there are more than 5 races left this season, so even under your corrected rule Ferrari would still have broken the rules so how can you justify them being given back the fine? Also what on earth are you wittering on about with the comments about Lewis? Lewis helped by a crane? When? As for driving erratically behind the SC I can't remember the race but his driving was no worse than that of others under similar circumstances.

    @66 - If your winning would have been less than £500 I suggest you try and sue Ferrari in the small claims court :-)

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  • 71. At 9:26pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @67 - Do you really think Massa gave up the place willingly? I suspect that there was huge pressure exerted behind the scenes and that Massa thought/felt that he had to comply with the direction given by his race engineer or there would be dire consequences if he refused.


    As for all this talk of 1 car, 1 driver per team - I doubt many teams would be prepared to do that, it would also reduce the feild from 24 cars to 12... which would be so exciting... not. Can anyone name any motor sport that only runs one car per team, I can't think of any although I can think of a number that run more than 2. As for swapping drivers, it would take ages to swap pedals, seats and everything else that would be needed from a safety point of view.

    I just think we should allow team orders the entire season but that teams should have to be up front at the start of the season regarding their views on team orders and should inform us before the race weekend starts if they plan to change the conditions (see my post 26 for more detials on my suggestion).

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  • 72. At 9:28pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @69 - Everything you say is correct and its also irrelevant, the regs say that the team is not allowed to interefer in the race in the manner they did last Sunday. The reality is that they broke the rules and as such they should be punished!

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  • 73. At 9:28pm on 30 Jul 2010, micalgon wrote:

    The above thought is smart and doesn’t require any further addition.
    It’s perfect thought from my side.



    Volvo v70

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  • 74. At 9:31pm on 30 Jul 2010, micalgon wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 75. At 9:35pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    @70 No, I don't think Rob Smedley gave the instruction off his own back. But the way he spoke to Felipe was the most patronicing thing I have ever seen on TV, Good lad?! Sorry?!

    It is clear that what happened on Sunday is not about team orders (everybody seem to agree that all the teams do it) but the way Ferrari did it, and the person who did it was Mr Smedley, and he did it badly.

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  • 76. At 9:37pm on 30 Jul 2010, RickF1 wrote:

    This to me is further evidence that joint No. 1 drivers in a team don't work.
    In the days of No. 1 & No. 2 Drivers the No. 2 new his place. In this instance he would have automatically conceeded and everyone would have been non the wiser and happy.
    All joint No1's give is loads of agro fighting with each other, detrement to the team and the sport.After all they keep telling us it is a team sport!
    I find it difficult to understand how the F1's Team Management can't see this or is it all just a huge publicity stunt to keep viewing ratings up, and there are No.1 and No.2 drivers anyway?

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  • 77. At 9:45pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @76 - The way that Rob speaks to Massa is the way he speaks to him, I must admit I have been surprised at many of their pit coms over the years but Massa doesn't seem to mind so why should it be any concern of ours or the teams?

    Sorry but what happened on Sunday is all about team orders, Ferrari 'made' Rob give them to Massa and Rob did it in such a manner that showed his obvious disgust at what he saw as his driver being treated badly by the team. The reality is that there is a regulation in F1 that forbids exactly this kind of thing (a rule that I might add that was brought in because of Ferrari doing exactly this thing back in 2002) and Ferrari blatantly broke that regulation. The excuse that 'everyone' does it is neither here nor there, as my mother always used to say 2 wrongs don't make a right.

    Now personally I do think the reg is pointless and actually causes harm to the sport I love. I think that team orders should be re-instated precisely because there is no effective or realistic way to ban them, I just think they should be open and above board.

    Then Massa would have had it written into his contract that he had to follow TOs under certain circumstances and we would know that, or he would have had it written into his contract that he is an equal driver to Alonso and didn't in which case he would have been able to tell Rob /Ferrari to go stuff themselves.

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  • 78. At 9:54pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @76 So who was the no1 and no2 driver between Prost and Senna, between Mansel and Piquet? There have been many times in F1 history when teams have had 2 number 1 drivers and have made it work for them....

    Traditionally different teams have taken different standpoints on this issue at different times, and often having two number1s in the same team has produced some of the best racing and most exciting seasons in the sport.

    As I have said a few times I just think we should get team orders out in the open and let teams decide what they want to do with regards to them. Some teams such as McLaren, Williams and Brawn have made a big thing about treating both drivers equally and not interfering (or at least not interefering until it was impossible for 1 driver to win the championship), other teams have historically taken the stance of having a clear no1 and a clear no2.

    I think the FIA should take a step back and let the teams decide, if a team wants to behave as Ferrari did last Sunday then thats their business... I am sure Ferrari would have a happier time with their drivers, the press and their sponsors and fans if they could have been upfront at the start of the season (or at any point since) and said Alonso is our hope for the drivers championship and its Massa's job to support him in that goal.

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  • 79. At 9:54pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    @ Cordas, We don't know if Massa minds the way Mr. Smedley speaks to him, but I have my own opinion and in my opinion that was patronising, condescending, belittling and arrogant. If he didn't like to say what he was asked to say, he could have turn around and say no! give up his job and go to McLaren to work with Ron Dennis, for example.

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  • 80. At 10:09pm on 30 Jul 2010, hettybells wrote:

    Following the 2002 incident I stopped watching/following F1 for some years. F1 should now rename itself as simply a business and remove any reference to Sport. If Ferrari don't receive a significant punishment, e.g. loss of constructors points plus Alonso relegated to at least 3rd then what is the point in watching anymore. Why don't the principles of each team get together prior to the race and decide the winners - what a complete and utter farce.

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  • 81. At 10:15pm on 30 Jul 2010, Pickles91 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 82. At 10:25pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    I really don't get people asking for Alonso to be punished.
    What did he do???

    and people asking for ferrari to be punish and then say that team orders shouldn't be band, what is that about? You all know that many teams give team orders, but you only ask for Fernando to be punish?

    In my opinion there is an important degree of fear in those opinions, fear that Fernando and Ferrari seem to be faster and faster, and Mclaren doesn't have an answer to that.

    I think many people suffer from Alonsitis.

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  • 83. At 10:33pm on 30 Jul 2010, Ben Fleet wrote:

    Nearly a week on I feel very strongly about what happened with Ferrari, possible more so as it seems that its slowly being swept under the carpet.

    No Team Orders!! - These are the rules and if broken there should be a punishment. $100,000 is nothing compared to the potential monies lost in bets placed on the GP last weekend.

    Surely this is in a way match fixing??? The end result has been determined not by the individual and race but a team order!!??
    It would be interesting to see if there were any bets placed by anyone close to Ferrari.

    I hope the world sports council makes up for the lack of action following this travesty. Ferrari have breached the rules and presented it for everyone to see, I understand the reasons why but the way it was delivered over the radio was just insulting to everyone.

    A fair punishment for this breach of the rules would be to strip the points from both drivers as the team should suffer. Of course I would feel even more for Massa a year on from his accident. The timing could not be worse for the chap and a bit of him must have died inside when he heard the radio message.

    Jean Todd in his possition must be worried with his relationship with his old team being tested against the fans, rules, FIA, World sports council, FOTA, teams, drivers and most importantly his possition.

    On a serious note - is this not race fixing?? Is this not illegal?? There are always stories about Cricket, snooker where bans are enforced.

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  • 84. At 10:45pm on 30 Jul 2010, flamos82 wrote:

    well well well, this seems like a massive storm over nothing.

    Firstly Ferrari - in this case - have broken the law, and should be punished according to it. I - personally - would award both Massa and Alonso joint 2nd place and equal points.

    In the case with Schumacher and Baracello they should not have been punished. They maybe should have been ticked off behind closed doors, but back then they broke no rule.

    Now, on to the rule it's self. Formula 1 is a team sport. Therefore, the team comes first. More points for the team and more championships for the team (Driver and Team) is the ideal result at the end of the season, this in mind F1 need to take a look at themselves. If F1 is a TEAM sport then this rule is stupid, as it flies totally against that. If it is not a team sport then they should reduce the cars to 1 car per team.

    Those people who are saying team orders have no place in F1 dont know their history. F1 has always been a team game. When the sport began and for many years if the number 1 drivers car broke down the number 2 driver got told to get out and hand over his car. Team orders were always there because F1 was always a team sport. So, if the sport stays as it is, then the rule needs to be ditched either completely, or replaced with a moderated rule that team orders can only be deployed after the half way point in the season, giving either driver a chance to establish himself as number 1 by that point.

    ultimately F1 is a team sport, all efforts should be to maximise the teams gains, but... in this instance with these rules (which don't fit the sport) Ferrari were wrong and should be punished.

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  • 85. At 11:02pm on 30 Jul 2010, Dave wrote:

    I'm a Ferrari fan and I'm ashamed of the teams actions, I'd have thought by the last 10 laps Alonso would have nailed Massa anyway and that he would have embraced the challenge. With regards to the rule it's simple, change the rule so team orders are only allowed when the deferring driver is mathematically out of the title race.

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  • 86. At 11:11pm on 30 Jul 2010, Carior wrote:

    I think to suggest that Ferrari haven't brought the sport into disrepute with this incident treats us with the same stupidity you (correctly in my view) accuse Ferrari of directing towards us the viewers. The fact that they didnt even have the decency to code the message makes a mockery of the sport. The fact that a week later we are still discussing this issue, when we have another race weekend well under way rather says it all. I chose to read this article before the summary of today's practices and this is still causing controversy and tarring the reputation of F1.

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  • 87. At 11:18pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    "Jenson Button has revealed he will quit Formula One if team orders are reintroduced into the sport."

    Wait a minute, when did Jenson start in F1? Year 2000. So, he didn't mind to drive 2 seasons with (legal)teams orders.
    Change of hearts or double standards?

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  • 88. At 11:22pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    @ Carior , Ferrari didn't code the message?

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  • 89. At 11:29pm on 30 Jul 2010, 3dit0r wrote:

    Just scrap the rule. Ludicrous anyway, of course you can't allow two team mates to battle it out like they would with other teams - you can never risk them taking each other off.

    I'm totally amazed at the fan's outraged reaction. Which sport have they been watching? It's blatantly obvious unless you're asleep that team orders never left F1 - seems like Ferrari/Alonso bashing to me, which I'm heartily fed up with in the media and forums.

    You'll never get rid of the orders, so much much better to just be honest about them.

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  • 90. At 11:31pm on 30 Jul 2010, Joe wrote:

    Hmmm, it's difficult. I'd say that changing the rule to punishing 'any position-changing that brings the sport into disrepute' could get rid of a large chunk of ambiguity, but it does rather invite teams to just think up more convincing cover stories rather than avoid team orders.

    I agree that it's more significant for teams that are at the sharp end of the grid or drivers that have realistic chances of winning the championship, but I really don't see how they could ever be allowed. What Massa was told to do was lose, an action that in any other sport that would be punished severely. I say keep the rule, and apply it to any team that appears to use team orders. Telemetry should be able to tell you if someone slows down unnecessarily or makes a deliberate 'mistake'. The only difficult circumstances will be if a team prevents one of its drivers from attempting to overtake e.g. Belgium '98, as all they have to do is match the pace of their team-mate in front. Still just seems to be an incentive for teams to lie better though.

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  • 91. At 11:34pm on 30 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Who has brought the sport into disrepute, causing controversy and tarring the reputation of F1 is the british Media. People like Eddie Jordan, jumping up and down, shouting, grapping people and pulling them in fron the cameras, and the journalist at the press conference being disrespectfull to the drivers who risk their lives every race. Same journalist that branded Kova a gentelmen when he followed team orders and let LH pass in Germany 2008.

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  • 92. At 11:40pm on 30 Jul 2010, gingerninja28 wrote:

    How about "Team orders of any nature are allowed, but any points scored in a race during which a driver responds to team orders (either by passing someone or being passed) has their points halved."
    I think that would have meant the Alonso-Massa battle would have happened properly (as both would have their points total reduced from this). This does also leave teams lower down the grid running spilt-strategy on tires to allow their cars to co-opperate slightly, as for them half points is better than no points. Opinions?

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  • 93. At 11:45pm on 30 Jul 2010, BobTurboSr wrote:

    So, how about a compromise? Bearing in mind I hate the notion of team orders? How about banning team orders UNTIL it's mathematically proven on points that one of the drivers is unable to win the championship?

    I came to watch racing, all drivers pushing themselves to the limit. I don't love this sport because of the wonderful display of 'good business sense.'

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  • 94. At 11:47pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @82 - Many people feel that Alonso should be punished because I assume they feel that not only did he benefit from the team orders, but they may well suspect that he was the instigator behind them (although no evidence has been put forward to suggest that), and I am inclined to agree with them. F1 is a sport that has a dark and murky side and that is something that we know Alonso has dealt with before, when he made certain statements to Ron Denis regarding the whole spygate regarding his desire for preferential treatment over his team mate, I am fairly sure that part of the reason he went to Ferrari and that Ferrari chose Massa over Kimi was because they knew that Massa would be a 'team player' if push came to shove... What do you think Kimi would have done last Sunday if his engineer had given him that message (and the points the same), I suspect that at best Kimi would have ignored them and at worst Kimi would have parked his car and walked off to find the nearest hospitality tent.

    I also wouldn't be at all surprised if there aren't also lingering doubts in the minds of many fans over Alonso's involvement in the Singapore event, as it seems credulous that the team could have given him such a dodgy race strategy without explaining to him how they planned to make it work (by having Piquet Jr crash). Now I am not alleging anything just airing the opinions of many F1 fans who I have talked to.

    All in all Alonso has made a rod for his own back, and it comes as no surprise that there their is so much dislike by non ardent Alonso fans. As for people being scared of him and his speed? Really? The problem last weekend was that he wasn't quick enough to catch and pass Massa without the help of team orders....

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  • 95. At 11:50pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @91 - It was the entire international F1 media who was up in arms about what happened last Sunday not Just EJ and the BBC crew. Ferrari flagarently and blatantly broke the rules, the idea this wasn't a huge news story in the sport is perposterous!

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  • 96. At 11:58pm on 30 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    p.s. Kovi was on a different strategy to Lewis, thats a rather big difference. You might also want to point out Ferrari's fun and games with Kimi and Massa in 2007 and 2008, at least then they had the good grace to make it ambiguous by messing them around in the pit stops. Also in none of these cases where the drivers in direct competition for the win and by the point these moves were made it was already the case the the disadvantaged driver was no longer a championship contender which Massa was and still is.

    Oh and lets not forget that it was a year to the day since Massa had his horrific accident in Hungary last year which just makes it all the more distasteful to many people, nothing would have made a better story than him winning last Sunday.

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  • 97. At 00:03am on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    @ Cordas:

    1-Alonso being the instigator of what happened Sunday.
    2- Alonso made certain statements to Ron Denis regarding the whole spygate regarding his desire for preferential treatment.
    3- Alonso's involvement in the Singapore event.

    Those are not opinions, are accusations that I haven't seen any evidence of. Please give us yours if you got any.

    Now, I don't believe people should be punished because the rumours and defamations that go around, so you haven't bring any reason why Alonso should be punished.

    As for people been scared of Ferrari, don't be mistaken, they are, mostly the Brits.

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  • 98. At 00:07am on 31 Jul 2010, tobyjug44 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 99. At 00:09am on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Oh Sorry Cordas, my mistake. I didn't know that the rule allows Team orders if one of the drivers was no longer a championship contender or had an accident a year before. My mistake!

    Ps, have a look at the after the race Press conference, and see who asked what and in which way.

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  • 100. At 00:28am on 31 Jul 2010, Paulo Lima wrote:

    Rules should be clear, in a kind of "black or white".
    100.000USD fine? Give me a break... With this kind of penalty, of course not following the rule will always compensate for a team like Ferrari.
    The idea is to prohibit? Then the fine shoud be much more stronger. It has to be with something teams really care about: loosing points in the championship!
    This should be taken into account for all the rules.

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  • 101. At 00:45am on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:


    1. I said it was opinion
    2. Well Ron Denis reported him to the FIA for it and made a statement to the press and public regarding the incident.
    3. Again I never said it was fact, I merely remarked on the fact that Alonso was never investigated (which is on the record) and that there were many questions that were never asked that many people feel should have been.

    Maybe if you go back and reread my posts you will pick up on the deliberate statements I made and the intentional ambiguities I put in them. Whilst you are at it you might pay attention to why I made the statements and what context I made them in... I was explaining why I THINK many people are so angry at Alonso at the moment.

    Personally I feel rather sorry for Alonso over this affair, as he is being demonised for a decision that was made by Ferrari. If there was any evidence of him being anything other than frustrated by Massa when he was struggling on the hard tyres 20 odd laps earlier regarding him 'demanding' to be let past then I am sure we would have heard it.

    @99 *FACE PALM* Did your mother never tell you two wrongs don't make a right? Did you also never learn that you should actually read what has been written rather than what you want to read.

    Oh and by the way I am not a steward, never have been and likely never will be, I am also not a member of the FIA or the WMSC. I am just a fan, who feels that the sport I love has been dragged through the mud because of the actions of Ferrari, actions which clearly broke the rules of the sport.... rules which I happen to think are impractical and should be scrapped... however they are still rules and should be enforced!

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  • 102. At 00:47am on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Perhaps the solution would be to ban radio communications. So all the decitions would be down to the drivers.

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  • 103. At 00:58am on 31 Jul 2010, happyredindian wrote:

    Something is clearly wrong when faster drivers are constantly getting stuck in the dirty air of a slower one. The tail of cars this causes just lets the guy on pole run away. That isn't racing either.

    Before threatening to boycott F1 and related products, ridiculing and attacking Alonso and Ferrari. Maybe the media and the vocal fans should concentrate on why there were empty seats at Hockenheim right from the start of the race.
    Perhaps it's time to end the monopoly a certain circuit design company has over F1. Then maybe team orders won't be needed at all.

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  • 104. At 01:02am on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    @ Cordas
    regarding point 2- Ron Dennis did not bring any evidence either, hence FIA not investigating.

    point 3- "many questions that were never asked that many people feel should have been" - you bet there were many questions that Ron Dennis never answer!!

    Regarding the context of your comment/opinion/acusations, I remind you that you were trying to answer my question: "Why people are asking for Alonso to be punish" and not "why children are trowing their toys all over the place?

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  • 105. At 01:07am on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Wait a minute, FIA did investigate and fined Mclaren with team's exclusion from the 2007 Constructors' Championship and a record-breaking fine of $100 million (USD)!!

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  • 106. At 01:10am on 31 Jul 2010, buymespresso wrote:

    "So, if that's the case, surely it would make most sense for the sport to erase article 39.1 and allow team orders."

    I completely agree. The current rule against team orders is like 1930s Prohibition - a complete failure. If team orders are good enough for the Tour de France, they're good enough for F1.

    PS: Any chance of a blog post about how F1 fans in the USA West Coast (probably anywhere in the country outside the Eastern time zone) can't watch F1 races live even when they pay for the Speed channel that normally shows F1? Ah, I guess not. Well, thanks anyway.

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  • 107. At 03:37am on 31 Jul 2010, DoctorD wrote:

    I posted the same comment on Jake's blog a few days back but my response to those he say it is a "team based" decision are ignoring the fact that in a "one-two" it doesn't matter which driver finishes first. It only matters for the WDC and in that regard, changing the running order on team instructions - however couched - is cheating because it affects the WDC's other competitors. In no other sport would we see people being so totally idiotic supporting this process as part and parcel of the game. The second point is that people do place large amounts of money on the results of races and fixing a result in any other sport can lead to a criminal prosecution.

    I think the race orders rule should simply be: you cannot have a driver letting another one past. You CAN - however you want to do it - try to keep them in the same order. The reason is that the latter will only be possible if no other driver is challenging the second placed of the "one-two" for position - see what happened when Hamilton challenged Vettel in Turkey. If no other driver can come close to pressuring the second placed driver, I don't think any team can complain about the result even though it might not provide a "spectacle".

    What I do have sympathy with is this: banning team orders should NOT oblige a team to force their drivers to try to overtake each other. That is as silly as suggesting that if Chelsea needed a point to win the premiership, they should be forced to play attacking football and risk losing.

    Does this make sense? is anyone who is relevant actually bothering to read all of these opinions? Their might actually be some good ideas for the FIA to consider on pages such as this, so thanks Jonathan for providing this virtual Aula.

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  • 108. At 04:06am on 31 Jul 2010, Jamie wrote:

    If team orders are to be allowed, and it seems likely that the rule will be altered, if not completely repealed at some point. Perhaps there should be some regulation of how they are issued. In My opinion these suggestions of allowing them only under certain ciercumstances or only later in the season is bordering on un-workable.

    Perhaps regulation needs to be made in the delivery method of orders. The two methods of communicating with the drivers are pit board and the radio. Perhaps the rules should allow issue of team orders only to be communicated by means of the pit board. This way they have to be sufficiently clear and concise to be read by the driver as they hurtle down the pit straight. They would also be open for all to see, unlike the team radio, which we, as veiwers only hear odd snippets of.

    The radio communication would be reserved for the transfer of technical info regarding the car and safey issues. As it is monitored by the FIA anyway it should be fairly sensibly easy to police. If not then perhaps only allow the radio to be used to transfer information affecting saftey to the car. Again FIA monitoring of radio broadcast should be enough to keep this in check.

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  • 109. At 04:08am on 31 Jul 2010, geoffreyjb wrote:

    If overtaking was possible at the German Grand Prix - then Alonso could have passed Massa, as he was definitely faster. The problems are not team orders, but the inability at most tracks for a driver to pass a slightly slower car (poor tires, for instance, could cause a team mate to be slower). All tracks where overtaking is practically impossible should be modified to allow for overtaking (even Monaco) - this way FI will become an exciting spectacle -

    Additionally, the recent banning of refueling has made overtaking in the pits more difficult, leading to processional races such as in Germany last Sunday - and at many other tracks.

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  • 110. At 04:23am on 31 Jul 2010, kmnewton1971 wrote:

    As the F1 championship now has 19 races in a season, how about keeping the ban on team orders, but only until after race 12. Then for the remaining races, if a team decides that one of its drivers is so far ahead of their teammate, the team can nominate one of its drivers to be in the "Number 1" car. Imagine how many wins Barrichello may have had if he wasn't a certain Germans "No.2"? The catalyst for the problems with Alonso when at McLaren?, not getting preferential treatment. How many times do we hear from drivers that "The best first indicator of your own performance is against your teammate". The advantage of broadcasting 'team radio' just proved what we all knew already, Ferrari probably bring the most support and investment into F1, so we'll just let them do as they please. As for issuing a fine to Ferrari for their latest exploits, pathetic. With the sale of just one of their production cars, under 50% of the value will cover this easily. It's like an average person cheating or committing fraud in their job, and being docked £5 from their salary. You can understand teams motivation for team orders, but i thought the most important people in any sport was the fans?, and i think a lot of us are getting pretty sick of some of the things that go on. Also raises the question of fixing race results as far as where gambling is concerned?

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  • 111. At 05:54am on 31 Jul 2010, oldschoolf1 wrote:

    Team orders always have been, and always will be, an integral part of F1. It's just impossible to legislate against them. There's nothing you can do to stop a team giving a driver a pre-arranged message to let his team-mate past. First rule of management: don't make rules you can't enforce, it just opens you up to ridicule.

    F1 tried for years to enforce a ban on traction control, with very limited success. In the end the only way they could do it was by forcing all the teams to use a standard engine management system.

    Team orders are here to stay. If you don't like it, find another sport.

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  • 112. At 06:03am on 31 Jul 2010, rl wrote:

    Comment #24- i'm so glad it's not just me that thinks that. Agree completely.

    My view is that team orders aren't ideal but if Ferrari are going to effectively get away with what they did then there is no point having that rule. It doesn't come much more obvious than "Fernando is faster" and then "Good lad, sorry"- it was a farce. I think that as further punishment they should simply reverse that result giving Massa the win and then take away the rule banning team orders because it just doesn't work. Then there'll be no more need for the "crafty stunts" (I really enjoyed that comment whoever said it- how can you call what Ferrari did a "crafty stunt"?!).

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  • 113. At 06:03am on 31 Jul 2010, bcbritt wrote:

    Fair enough it's a team sport as far the constructors championship goes but it is also an individual sport as far as the drivers championship is concerned, you can't have it both ways. So is F1 about drivers or constructors? Let's get that figured out first. Over to you Bernie!

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  • 114. At 07:23am on 31 Jul 2010, t00tles wrote:

    I haven't read al of the comments - there are quite a few on this subject! But in terms of a solution that allows drivers to race competitively, which is what most of us want - I think one way to do this is to have only one driver per team.

    Radical it seems, and it is a concept that needs developing but it makes much more sense. There would be no need for team orders and we would know who the best driver is. If teams want two drivers, then as the last race showed, there is a need for there to be essentially two teams within teams and for this to be incorporated into the sport.

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  • 115. At 08:09am on 31 Jul 2010, pg55555 wrote:

    The problem is that the possible/probable offences that Ferrari and some of its employees have committed are not restricted just to breaking the "team orders" regulation.

    First, of course, is the breaking of the specific regulation, POSSIBLY made worse by it being Ferrari which did it and they were the team whose actions led to the regulation being introduced in the first place.

    Secondly, from the fact that Ferrari stated before and after their interviews with the Stewards that they hadn't utilised "team orders", but that the Stewards found that they had it is to be assumed that the Stewards found also that Ferrari had "misled" them. The last time that this occured was with Hamilton and McLaren at the 2009 Australian GP and their punishment for that was the loss of Hamilton's drivers points for the race and McLaren's Constructors' points for that race.

    Thirdly, there have been some intemperate statements from senior Ferrari officials concerning the matter. These MIGHT be considered by the FIA/WMSC as having "brought the sport into disrepute" and IF SO then further sanctions might be imposed.

    It might be considered that the most important of these is the second one. This sets a very specific and recent precedent and if the WMSC do not impose a similar punishment then it will be obvious that they have not been logical and consistent, and that will cause more problems for the sport.

    Summarising, Ferrari SHOULD have big punishments coming to them unless the WMSC/FIA want more bad publicity of the sport.

    What a mess.


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  • 116. At 08:12am on 31 Jul 2010, EnglebertHumpnerdinck wrote:

    I really wish the BBC would allow others to recommend comments - I thought (of the earlier posts) 7, 11 and 16 were decent remarks.

    Reading through the posts I think I have got THE solution which sets-aside the TEAM ORDERS issue. To my mind there are conflicting interests in the sport, which is becoming increasingly banal and lacks entertainment (made up in some part at least by the pre and post-race analysis, in-race commentary and issues arising like this.)

    If the Drivers have to work as a team and are rewarded as a team then TEAM ORDERS becomes a non-issue. In this proposed scenario the team of say (MCLAREN) BUTTON/HAMILTON, finishing 2nd and 4th for example, would both be awared the AVERAGE of the points they have won together and the MCLAREN team would be awarded Constructors points for the achievement of both cars finishing the race. At the end of the season the Drivers World Championship would be just that - an award for TWO Drivers (or a third depending on whether a substitute driver had to be used for any eventuality) based on the AVERAGE of their results.

    Before you knock it think of the logic and the sprit of drivers working together, would make some races fascinating. One last thing, F1 is becoming about piloting a car rather than driving it - reduce tyre grip, maybe increase the power.

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  • 117. At 08:39am on 31 Jul 2010, Hedley Paul wrote:

    I thought the standing regulations stated that "... a competitor shall compete at all times...." or words to that effect? That being so, any driver who deliberately pulls over, for whatever reason, should be disqualified. 'Fixing' is taboo in horse racing, why not in F1? It distorts completely the nature of the event, leaving betting on an F1 race a total sham. If it is the team who is competing, lets do away with the driver's championship and simply have the constructor's championship.
    It seems the constructors want it both ways, as does Bernie. Create hype over who is to win, then falsify the true result! Compounded by then telling us that it ok to do it! Wishful thinking, but strong leadership from the FIA required?

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  • 118. At 08:50am on 31 Jul 2010, Gizmo19890 wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 119. At 08:57am on 31 Jul 2010, Obbo wrote:

    Fans are not against team orders
    Before anyone reacts solely to the opening sentence let me clarify. I believe that the majority of fans reject the cynical, and simplistic, argument put forward by David Coulthard in his Telegraph column; that team orders should be legalised because they happen anyway and are impossible to stop.

    He is not alone in this argument. A surprising number of heretofore respected figures have displayed an astounding cynicism which can only be attributed to their having become institutionalised within what has been described as the ‘F1 bubble’ (wonderful phrase!). Indeed David’s article, despite declaring his respect for the fans, finishes on a note of anything but that, a sneer at their naivety in expecting sportsmanship in what he insists on calling a team sport. He, like many other ‘F1 bubbleites’ fail to see the illogicality of this contention while continuing to expect our respect and interest in a much hyped, supposedly individual driver’s championsip. Other similar competitions run teams but recognise and uphold the competitors right to compete on an individual level. ( Let me here dispose of the ‘Tour de France defence’. That is a competition based on team tactics in which specialists in particular aspects are assisted by other team members who know and accept their supporting role from the outset.) The same ‘experts’ who insist that F1 is a ‘team’ sport never tire of extolling the egotism, rugged individualism and ruthless determination to win of the typical F1 driver.

    As a fan I want to see a competition I can believe in and understand what is happening, not wonder if it is being manufactured as a spectacle to maximise sponsor exposure or appease the most strident personality in the garage.

    However, I believe also that the majority of fans recognise that there are circumstances in which team orders make sense and can be fully justified. I also believe that these circumstances can be identified and legislated for. Furthermore, given the data technology already available to the FIA there is no reason that the could not be adequately policed, even if we accept the statement by many of the team order supporters that F1 is a business first and a sport a distant second.

    For example, if in a particular race one team member is for some reason obviously off the pace of his team mate and in danger of hampering him to the benefit of other teams then sportsmanship, as well as team interests, would suggest he move over and allow the pass.

    Similarly, if it is mathmatically impossible for one driver to win the championship it is not unreasonable to expect him to play a supporting role to his colleague.

    Also, in the days of re-fuelling, team mates on radically different strategies could have been expected to co-operate.

    There may be other circumstances which might be applied by mutual agreement between the teams (I can not bring any to mind at the moment) but one thing I’m sure all fans want is transparency.

    The FIA should :
    Make the rules explicit
    Set up the required policing methods
    Make the rules public
    Enforce them rigously and consistently.

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  • 120. At 09:02am on 31 Jul 2010, EnglebertHumpnerdinck wrote:

    @119 - aren't the rules clear enough? Aren't the actions of Ferrari clear enough? The only thing belittling and in contempt of the rules is the pathetic fine issued - perhaps the World Council will yield a big stick.

    I'll go with 114 - either one driver per team or my on suggestion at 116.

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  • 121. At 09:06am on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    @116 - Sorry but that is exactly what the constructors championship is right now, except that you think dividing the points total by 2 (the number of drivers) will somehow change it?

    The reality is that motor sport is different to horse racing, because horse racing involves an animal that can't be affected from the stables once the race has begun, doesn't need fresh hooves, have to manage hay consumption when racing or need to manage how its joints and ligaments are handled throughout the race.

    In modern day F1 the pit wall and garage play an integral part in keeping the cars going and do mandatory (and required) maintenance through out the race which gives them the ability to 'mange' their cars. Now because there are 2 different championships at stake and both of them give glory to the team but only one of them glory to the individual driver (which is the more glamorous trophy) the team wants to win the drivers 1st and the constructors second. As teams run 2 cars which its possible to manipulate its possible for them to enact team orders if they so choose.

    So my solution is rather than completely breaking the sport by insane overkill measures we should just let the teams do what they want with regards to team orders, but demand that they are honest and upfront about their respective positions regarding team orders with their drivers, with the fans and with the sport itself. I really don't see the point in trying to enforce some impossible prohibition and I don't want them to throw the baby out with the bath water either.

    Oh and boscombe, would you please show me the respect of actually reading what I wrote in my posts rather than picking out the bits you want and then making the rest up.

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  • 122. At 09:13am on 31 Jul 2010, EnglebertHumpnerdinck wrote:

    @121 - the point I was trying to make in my post at 116 is there are conflicting interests between team and driver. You state that teams want to win the Drivers Championship first? According to Ferrari the interests of the team override those of the driver at all times.

    Why not synthesize the objectives of the teams and their two drivers, so any driver is not favoured over the other and hence if Massa had been allowed to finish first where he should have and Alonso second, there would have been no benefit to anybody had the roles been reversed and therefore no need for team orders.

    I wrote at 116 the following

    If the Drivers have to work as a team and are rewarded as a team then TEAM ORDERS becomes a non-issue. In this proposed scenario the team of say (MCLAREN) BUTTON/HAMILTON, finishing 2nd and 4th for example, would both be awared the AVERAGE of the points they have won together and the MCLAREN team would be awarded Constructors points for the achievement of both cars finishing the race. At the end of the season the Drivers World Championship would be just that - an award for TWO Drivers (or a third depending on whether a substitute driver had to be used for any eventuality) based on the AVERAGE of their results.

    At 121 you ended your post with

    Oh and boscombe, would you please show me the respect of actually reading what I wrote in my posts rather than picking out the bits you want and then making the rest up.


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  • 123. At 09:20am on 31 Jul 2010, overlanddriver wrote:

    In all areas of life, there are laws, rules & regulations. Many of these we may consider to be stupid, unfair or unworkable, but we all know that if we transgress - and are caught - we will be punished, and we know what the penalty will be. F1 should be no different.

    It is simply unacceptable to break a rule, then claim as a defence that it's a bad law or that "everyone does it anyway".

    If a rule is bad - then change it. There appears to be plenty of support to scrap the "no team rules" within the teams & the pit lane. But until such time as this is changed, then breaking it must attract a penalty - and it must be a REAL penalty. In F1, a $100,000 fine is loose change to teams like Ferrari, Mclaren or Red Bull. It's meaningless & completely sends out the wrong message.

    In this case, the whole of the Ferrari team - including both drivers are culpable - and they should all be punished. The best way of doing this is to strip the team & the drivers of all points for that race.

    As for the rule - I agree with those posters who think team orders should be permitted. F1 IS a team sport - but with the proviso, that this can only happen when one of the drivers cannot mathematically challenge for the driver's championship.

    If F1 continues to treat the fans with contempt, those fans will desert the sport, TV audiences will fall and sponsors will withdraw their support.

    Formula 1 - you've been warned - sort yourselves out!

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  • 124. At 09:24am on 31 Jul 2010, mik holloway wrote:

    At the end of the day its not about team orders, what Ferrari did was fix the race, its no different to paying a goalkeeper to let in goals. If Alonso is as good as he thinks he should have passed Massa by racing and, if he was better he would have passed him, obviously he's not as good as he thinks which is why Massa let him past. Ferrari should have been stripped of all race points and banned from the next race. The fans pay a lot of money to watch drivers race, if teams are allowed to fix races in this way the fans will stop watching.
    Mik Holloway

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  • 125. At 09:33am on 31 Jul 2010, motownmickey wrote:

    Solution : one car one driver per team - and lots of teams
    Won't happen obviously. But it would resolve this issue at a stroke.

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  • 126. At 09:49am on 31 Jul 2010, mjtopping wrote:

    Probably the only 'cure' for F1 rule fiddling is to have a new rule added to the end of the rule book which says
    "None of the above apply if Mr Alonso, or Ferrari, or their sponsors might suffer in any way as a result of their breach of the rules, or their complicity in the breach of the rules by any other entity. Such matters will not even be considered by the stewards"

    Or as other have suggested cancel the Drivers competition altogether and just have a Team prize.

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  • 127. At 10:01am on 31 Jul 2010, gnpotter wrote:

    Apologies if someone has suggested this already. Team orders can't be eradicated for the simple reason you can't prove what was meant by a covert message. So the logical solution is to allow orders, but this disappoints the fans who want to see genuine racing and overtakes for position rather than poorly choreographed manoeuvres like last week. So, how about if teams were allowed to issue orders - declared to Race Control and broadcast to the viewers - to move their preferred driver into a higher position BUT at the loss of some or all the constructor points scored by that driver. The teams would have to decide which was more important, giving their number one driver more points or holding station and letting them race but keeping all their constructor points. It would need fine tuning but at least it would make orders transparent and avoid controversy and upsetting the fans.
    Before anyone says it, I know they could still issue covert orders but in that situation it is down to the the leading driver to decide whether to concede his position, and if it is in his contract to do so then let's have it made it public.

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  • 128. At 10:11am on 31 Jul 2010, gtejo wrote:

    Surely one way round this is to give the drivers half each of the points they won between them. To my mind Massa deserved some credit for seeing off Alonso at the start AND during the race on fresh tyres. Alonso didn't earn his points he was gifted them and Massa lost out after a brilliant drive. Ferarri's constructors points would be unaffected because they were 1st & 2nd anyway.
    It is a drivers championship too. A driver who does a good job should get the reward - his future employment may depend on it.

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  • 129. At 10:31am on 31 Jul 2010, NFFC86 wrote:

    What Jezzar wrote hits the nail on the head!

    The trouble is that they are taking the competition out of the sport. If you are not going to let the drivers race each other then what a waste of time it is to watch this on a Sunday. The plaudits need to go to the best driver, and the encompasses all the skills possessed to be this.

    Massa pulled off the overtaking maneuver in the first corner and made it stick, and the fact of the matter is Alonso didn't have the skill to overtake him. Despite the fact he may have been quicker is irrelevant as he seemingly didn't have the race craft to get by his 'slower' team mate.

    Out and out pace isn't enough, and THE most entertaining thing about F1 is the overtaking, and to be denied as a fan to see this is an absolute tragedy! And what it does do is make the Drivers Championship an absolute joke. At the end of the season the best driver is the one that possesses all the skills to win races, not the one that cant overtake his 'slower' team mate so throws all his toys out of the pram to win the race.

    Alonso has before shown his pitfalls, and will never again be a worthy champion unless he shows the skills to win like one!

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  • 130. At 10:38am on 31 Jul 2010, autosportfan wrote:

    If they do decide to allow team orders. Then it would be better also
    to scrap the drivers championship for obvious reasons. And instead, cups
    given to both drivers of the winning team.

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  • 131. At 11:25am on 31 Jul 2010, AQuig wrote:

    What 'Worthy' Champion could stand with a head held high if he had achieved the ultimate victory through capitulation of a team mate. None (well maybe Alonso, who is a very unworthy champion).
    Either enforce the ban on team orders or reduce each team to a single drive each, that might not make economioc sense, then again does F1 anyway? It would completely extinguish the issue.

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  • 132. At 11:43am on 31 Jul 2010, findegorgorito wrote:

    While what happened last week was ugly, further punishment would have further possible consequences:

    1) Setting a precedent and, given the amount of covert team orders going on in every race, making the whole thing unmanageable.
    2) Ferrari could make the case for Massa to be handed over the 2008 championship on the evidences and what had been said by Ron Dennis and Lewis Hamilton. Other scenarios and races would have to be investigated, making the whole thing unmanageable.
    3) The least unlikely consequence could be Ferrari leaving F1 and trying to create a competition of his own. An all Ferrari race where Ferrari always wins or something.
    4) Of course, Ferrari could do like in the two races previous to Germany and keep it calm and carry on. But given the hight bet they had placed, I would imagine they are expecting a big return.

    I don't think anything will happen other than setting new clearer rules about team orders.

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  • 133. At 11:50am on 31 Jul 2010, Karl Joicey wrote:

    To me it's simple, who cares if team orders have always been part of the sport? They are not what the vast majority of fans want. Fans want clean honest racing where the winner of a race wins it by right and not by default. If Mclaren or Red Bull ever pull off a stunt like that performed by Ferrari, the penalty should be simple and straightforward, driver points removed, constructor points removed, 10 place grid penalty for both cars at the next race and a hefty fine. Then see how often this coarse embarrassment to Formula 1 happens. When a sport forgets that it is there for the benefit of the fans and not the other way round, then that sport is in decline.

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  • 134. At 11:59am on 31 Jul 2010, Derngate12 wrote:

    The truth of the matter is that we DONT HAVE F1 'Racing' anymore...
    What we are getting is a con show...... a procession of cars based largely on qualifying times. When fans pay to see racing and they are dealt up this 'show' at a vast cost, then there is only one answer, and that is that each team should only have ONE driver in the RACE... the fastest one from qualifying...... the other driver doesnt race at all, and then we will see exactly who is the best. So stop conning us and GET DRIVING...... I am sick of these guys behaving like spoilt 15 year old boys. GROW UP and earn your vast pay packets and stop complaining, and as for you DC... how may times did you really race??

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  • 135. At 12:10pm on 31 Jul 2010, Del wrote:

    I blame the FIA. They have been wishy-washy for years on subjects like Brawn GP's wings to team orders to airflow box's etc etc. They set rules teams do their builds etc being told they are within the rules teams moan FIA goes weak and keeps changing their mind over legalities etc. They say no team orders police some and not others cos a team is clever etc come on they know whats been going on for years they have chosen to keep ignoring it and now all of a sudden it's a problem. That's rubbish they need to finally decide 1 way or the other put rules in place and police them properly then hey presto problem solved.

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  • 136. At 12:22pm on 31 Jul 2010, Stevie D wrote:

    @14 (Tuskin Raider):
    I completely agree that if one driver is totally out of contention, it may be reasonable for him to be instructed to let his team-mate through, but it can't be as blatant as pulling into a lay-by and waiving him past.

    I am comfortable with orders such as "hold station" and "don't defend".

    With "hold station", it is not advisable to have two evenly matched team cars racing against each other when they are not racing against anyone else, particularly late in the race. More sensible to take the points you've got, save a bit of wear on the engines, save fuel and avoid the risk of taking each other out.

    With "don't defend", it is not advisable to hold up a team-mate who really is a lot faster than you. If Massa genuinely had been holding up Alonso, it wouldn't have been unreasonable for Ferrari to want their drivers in the "right" order, without risking a crash if Massa tried to defend too vigorously against Alonso overtaking. But in that situation, you'd need some kind of assurance that the driver instructed to "not defend" was a lot slower than the other driver and had been holding him up, and the stewards could penalise the team if there was no evidence that that was the case.

    That very blatantly wasn't the situation at Hockenheim, where Alonso was not noticeably faster than Massa, and was not being disadvantaged by being behind him, other than the difference between 1st and 2nd. That was a clear-cut case of race fixing, and cannot be allowed or else it will destroy what little integrity the sport has left.

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  • 137. At 12:23pm on 31 Jul 2010, scuffsf1 wrote:

    Red Bull and Mclaren are abiding by the rules by allowing their drivers to race each other. Ferrari have never respected the rules or the FIA. I can never understand why anyone supports them knowing they will brake the rules during the season.

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  • 138. At 12:40pm on 31 Jul 2010, salvex wrote:

    Watching the lead up to qualifying - as usual all at Ferrari are ignoring the obvious. They say that the team is the most important, so why change anything when you have first and second in the bag? That gets the team maximum points. The drivers, on the other hand should have been allowed to race. Bottom line - don't confuse team and drivers. They are different championships. Ferrari should lose their team points and the drivers' should be reversed.

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  • 139. At 12:40pm on 31 Jul 2010, Steve B wrote:

    Solution to team orders-
    If mathematically any driver can win the title then no team orders.
    Once it is mathematically impossible to win title then team orders should be allowed for the sake of the team.

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  • 140. At 12:43pm on 31 Jul 2010, disillusioned wrote:

    If the team is the important thing - why issue the order last week - the team got the same number of points either way. However changing the order of the drivers affected the drivers championship - that is race fixing and would not be accepted in other sports. Maybe the solution is to get rid of the drivers championship?

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  • 141. At 12:45pm on 31 Jul 2010, TheRBman wrote:

    I keep hearing from F1 insiders that team orders always have been and always will be in force up and down the pit lane. I would not try to argue that point but the Martin Brundles of this world have no understanding of the majority of the fans views. There are a large proportion of fans who don't see this, understand this or want to even though they understand. Bring them face to face with this reality and a significant proportion will no longer want anything to do with the sport, confining it to the same bin as professional wrestling.

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  • 142. At 12:46pm on 31 Jul 2010, Holdway wrote:

    1 - Preventing team orders is impossible. The rule is unenforceable.
    2 - Fans will not tolerate a fixed race winner.

    To fix these two problems what needs to be done is to remove the team orders rule, and remove the incentive to fix the race result. To do this a rule is needed whereby if a teams drivers finish next to each other in the race, then the team can decide which of those drivers collects the higher amount of points.

    If that rule had been in place Massa would have been able to win the German Grand prix, and then Ferrari could have given Alonso the 25 points. Massa wouldn't have been deprived his race win, which is what hurt him, and Alonso would still have had some incentive to battle Massa for first place in order to get the race win.

    The team then doesn’t have to worry about it’s drivers compromising each others races. Drivers don’t have hard earned race wins stolen from them, and fans aren’t subjected to fixed results. Everybody wins.

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  • 143. At 12:53pm on 31 Jul 2010, Peter Munton wrote:

    F1 is either a team event or not. If it is a team event then you cannot have a single winner, the world champion would be the team with two drivers and all the team. If you want a single driver as the world champion then there should be no team orders you cannot have it both ways. In my mind Farrari won the German GP, Alonso did not win he was given 1st place this is not the same thing

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  • 144. At 12:53pm on 31 Jul 2010, coach2010 wrote:

    Why don't they just allow team orders AFTER a certain ponts differential has been achieved?

    Make it a challenge for one driver to achieve a level of dominance over his team mate and then he can call on his team mate for support?

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  • 145. At 12:55pm on 31 Jul 2010, madharry01 wrote:

    to say team orders are part of the modern day f1 is a complete joke its going to end up like wrestling on itv years ago a complete farce why are we all watching it if its been decided before the start of the season .
    If it continues the bbc should consider weather to continue showing it.
    We all want to see the best driver win the championship buy skill not buy the biggest pay packet.

    Neil bristol

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  • 146. At 12:55pm on 31 Jul 2010, DeadlyHotFeet wrote:

    I support F1 teams trying to maximise their wins and points but not by undermining the race itself. Thus, the teams will develop their cars to get the best out of both their vehicles and their individual drivers. Once a race starts, there should be impartial technical and management support for both a team's drivers. It was a step in the right direction to ban team orders so what is needed is a method of firming that up. If team orders are allowed - clearly or subtley - the race result can be fixed. The drivers and fans lose out. The teams and sponsors look bad. The sport loses support. So let's see impartial support for the drivers during the race.

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  • 147. At 12:55pm on 31 Jul 2010, GoJonnyGoGoGoGo wrote:

    @125 already said it,but spot on,cant have team orders with one driver!

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  • 148. At 12:56pm on 31 Jul 2010, BobbyBoingBoing wrote:

    I understand that no driver is bigger than the team, but no team is bigger than the fan-base. Team orders deny fans the true spectacle of motorsport. Ferrari say team orders have always existed, but until the advent of radio influence during the race was limited to communication during pit stops. Many fans follow, and bet on, individual drivers. If this was horse racing Ferrari would now be banned for the entire season.
    I repeat, no team is bigger than the fan-base.
    F1 must apply it's own rules, and act before it is too late.

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  • 149. At 12:59pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldschoolf1 wrote:

    An imaginary open letter from teams and drivers to "fans":

    We're going to have a race. You're welcome to watch if you want. But don't try to dictate the rules to us. It's our sport, not yours.

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  • 150. At 1:29pm on 31 Jul 2010, garry wrote:

    Ferrari broke the rule ,we all heard it in a poor code ,shortly after
    the radio the lead changed.Fans where cheated and Massa,he should have
    been alowed to race,a win a year after his accident would have been good,and Alonso may have been caught by Red Bull,this could have been a great last lap.
    As for the fine its nothing,how about an engine or gearbox that would

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  • 151. At 1:31pm on 31 Jul 2010, BobbyBoingBoing wrote:

    138 Hit the nail on the head, as the "team orders" did not change anything in the constructors championship as Ferrari has a 1 - 2 anyway.
    F1 is always trying to save weight on the vehicle, so why not junk the radio. No orders to save fuel, let your team mate pass, or how far the next driver is behind (apart from the pit board). Then we would see proper racing again. Anyone remember who pushed his car over the finish line as he had run out of fuel about 30 yards short?

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  • 152. At 1:32pm on 31 Jul 2010, TheJudeanPeoplesFront wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 153. At 1:46pm on 31 Jul 2010, ginider wrote:

    Team Orders: There are more sorts of orders than preference driver, which are clearly necessary. However, I watch F1 to see which DRIVER is CHAMP and always have done so since Stirling's days. Which Motor-racing Team Business wins the Constructors' Championship comes second with me, even tho I adore all the technical info. (I comment as former PA to chairman of Norton-BSA-Triumph/TT group.) We have to be realistic, but not hypocritical. It was thoroughly embarrassing to watch Felipe's face. I wanted to see him justify the Team investment in his recuperation and go on to WIN. If Fernando was so upset at the preference apparently granted to Lewis - enough for him to leave McLaren - then why does he view it as OK if it favours himself? The SPORT does not deserve this.

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  • 154. At 2:01pm on 31 Jul 2010, Robert Stephens wrote:

    The talk is that no driver is bigger than the team, but does any team think that they are biger than F1.

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  • 155. At 2:35pm on 31 Jul 2010, Syph wrote:

    The ban of team orders makes absolutely no sense. The drivers are not team mates as things stand they are just competitors who are racing for the same company. Sure every driver wants that podium spot but it's a team game, the team got those drivers to where they are as much as the drivers did. Being asked to let your team mate past because you're backing them up into the opposition just makes plain sense.

    Should Ferrari be penalised - yes. They broke the rules, even though it is a poorly conceived rule (2002 was an extreme case), and there must always be consequences to that. The fine seems to be enough of a reprimand to me, considering every team makes decisions which favour their faster driver every week and get away with it.

    The real issue if you ask me is: Is F1 a team sport?

    I don't feel cheated as an F1 fan from last weeks display. I feel considerably more cheated, as a fan, by a lot of the changes that keep getting made to the sports rule set and tracks every year.

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  • 156. At 2:36pm on 31 Jul 2010, Stephen wrote:

    Blatently rigged sorry excuse for a Sport!!!!.Sport by its very nature is about Competition!!!!.Where is the competition when a driver is as good as ordered to to remove his hands from the trophy.All teams do it so that makes F1 a cheating game by all who take part.Only way you will ever stop this cheating is to make the Sport(and i use that word loosely)One Team One Driver,but F1 is about nothing else other than advertising,status and money so that will never happen

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  • 157. At 2:38pm on 31 Jul 2010, FEDUPWITHCHEATERS wrote:

    If the F.I.A. fined Ferrari 100,000 then they obviously think that they broke the rules, then why has Alonso been able to keep his win, surely he should be disqualified or at the very least be put back to 2nd place. And Massa get the first place.
    If no action is taken why have the rules? As a 100.000 fine is peanuts to these people.
    I feel there should be NO team orders, Drivers should go all out to win, and if found to be not trying should be penalised. If this sort behaviour continues I will not be paying for, or watching F1 in the future and I feel Most PAYING fans feel the same. (keeping in mind F1 gets a lot of money from PAYING fans).

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  • 158. At 2:42pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    "How can you impose a really strict penalty for an offence that we all know the teams commit?" said one team executive.


    If all the teams commit the same offense, and they do, then how can you justify giving ANY penalty to Ferrari?

    As for stopping team orders, taking the radios out of the cars would be a big step in the right direction. (Assuming you even want to stop team orders - I think they should be allowed)

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  • 159. At 2:47pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    I watch F1 to see which DRIVER is CHAMP


    Drivers are never champions in F1. It's always a combination of car and driver, and usually in that order of importance.

    People who want to see a competition which is all about the drivers should watch some of the other forms of motor racing which exist especially for that purpose.

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  • 160. At 2:54pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    Fair enough it's a team sport as far the constructors championship goes but it is also an individual sport as far as the drivers championship is concerned


    It's not an individual sport as far as the drivers are concerned because the drivers drive different cars for different teams, and the driver who wins, nine times out of ten, is the driver in the best car.

    Take Button and Hamilton out of the McLarens and into e.g. the Force India cars and neither one would have won a title.

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  • 161. At 3:36pm on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    So why is it that you often get drivers champions from teams that don't have the best cars? Red Bull was the car of last season as it was the fastest for the most races, again this year they have had the quickest car at every track bar one which just so happened to be the only track that the McLaren was the quickest car yet Lewis is leading the Drivers, Jenson is 2nd and McLaren are leading the constructors.

    Yes a driver needs a car capable of winning races to win the championship, but that car also needs a driver capable of winning races. Its fine to say put Lewis and Jenson in a Force India and they wouldn't have won any championships but you can also put drivers like Trulli and Kovi in championship winning cars and neither came close to competing at the same level as their team mates.

    F1 is a TEAM sport, and at the heart of the teams are the drivers. No matter how quick the cars are they will go nowhere without someone behind the wheel, just the same as taking the drivers out of the cars and they will be lapping in hours and competing over minutes differences rather than tenths, hundredths and thousandths of a second.

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  • 162. At 3:42pm on 31 Jul 2010, gwynhyfer wrote:

    It is probably impossible for there to be a reinstatement of team orders but perhaps it can be moderated to occur off the track BEFORE the race begins. That is the time for teams to discuss strategy,placings, etc. Once the race has begun then the team order ban should still be in place. Obviously there will be the odd coded message but to hear the very blatant Ferrari message & then watching the ridiculously crawling paced overtaking (well, in F1 terms!) was cringeworthy at least but most of all a blatant disregard for the spectators and followers of the sport. Frankly the idea of the sport becoming a Constructors championship with individual drivers having secondary importance is probably only important to the teams themselves, with most fans usually favouring a driver and watching their progress. I wonder, however, how many Ferrari fans are uncomfortable that one of their drivers has been effectively usurped by the latest controversy in the same way Red Bull appear to have a favourite driver (as in the front wing change). It might actually make sense to reinstate the declared drivers 1 & 2 but for a team like McClaren with two former WC's this in inself would present problems. Formula 1 must remember that regardless of the 'business side', without a good fan base there is no F1. Perhaps as well as an experienced driver acting as a stweward they should also have an informed spectator.

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  • 163. At 3:43pm on 31 Jul 2010, mickmickmurphy wrote:

    If team orders come back into legality within F1 then a lot of big teams will have to decide as Ferrari did on who their No.1 driver is. Lewis or Jenson, Nico or Schumi, Vettel or Webber. Where the No.1 feels great and gets the best front wing and the likes, the so-called second driver ends up demoralised and eventualy loses love for the sport. Just look at Rubens' body language at Ferrari.

    On another note I don't think people should be too miffed about losing money at the bookies because of team orders. The only gambling in F1 should be by the teams and drivers during race weekends.

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  • 164. At 4:14pm on 31 Jul 2010, thesmallerhalf wrote:

    Team orders will always be a part of the sport, decisions being made at all stages of the seasons that are effectively just these.

    What irritates me is that this one was purely to advantage one driver against the other and not really for team at all. They were likely to get maximimum points for being 1 & 2 which is what happened. And worse, a blatant and clumsy team order was enacted and then repeatedly denied afterwards in a series of laughably 'disingenuous' statements that displays Ferrari's contempt for the paying public. I was embarrassed for Rob Smedley as he tried make an argument akin to convincing us that the moon is made of cheese, denying what everyone with half a brain could understand from Ferrari's radio transmissions.

    So would Ferrari please not insult the intelligence of fans by breaking the rules and then trying to bull**** their way out of it. This sort of thing does more damage to the sport than anything else.

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  • 165. At 4:17pm on 31 Jul 2010, mirabilite wrote:

    It`s simple, the ban on team rules is impossible to enforce, therefore team rules should be allowed. F1 is, after all, made up of teams.
    If you take a tour de France cycling team, there are 9 cyclists in the team, but 8 of them are there purely to support one main rider. Over time, these back-up riders may become the main guy, if they are good enough, and if not, they just continue to work for the good of the team. The overall victory gets credited to the main rider, and his victory reflects on the rest of the team.
    As for those who mention betting being affected, firstly, the rules of a sport shouldn`t be determined by gambling, and secondly, people will get to know who is the preferred driver in a team, and odds ona driver winning will be adjusted accordingly.

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  • 166. At 4:30pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    What irritates me is that this one was purely to advantage one driver against the other and not really for team at all.


    The drivers championship IS a reflection of the team. Winning it is the number one goal of each team.

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  • 167. At 4:34pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    So why is it that you often get drivers champions from teams that don't have the best cars? Red Bull was the car of last season as it was the fastest for the most races, again this year they have had the quickest car at every track bar one which just so happened to be the only track that the McLaren was the quickest car yet Lewis is leading the Drivers, Jenson is 2nd and McLaren are leading the constructors.


    You don't "often" get that. And one big reason why Red Bull is not leading the "drivers championship" is that their two drivers, while leading a race, crashed into each other and took each other out. Which is why team orders are the norm.

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  • 168. At 4:39pm on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Oh dear, it seems like Jenson car has some gremlins. Ask Fernando, he had them in 2007.

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  • 169. At 4:47pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    What irritates me is that this one was purely to advantage one driver against the other and not really for team at all.


    The drivers are part of the teams, not some independent entities. When the divers win, the teams win, and vice versa. But the drivers are subordinate to the teams, just as football players are subordinate to the teams they play for.

    No driver has ever won a title in F1 on his own. If Button wants to buy his own car, engineer it, set it up as he wants, drive it, and win, then you can say "Button won it".

    If Webber wins the "drivers championship", then Red Bull will have won the divers championship. He admitted as much today, when he gave credit for his pole position to the engineers who set up his car.

    One more time - people who want to see an auto race which pits driver against driver rather than team against team should not watch Formula One. That's not what this sport is about. It's more like LeMans. You people should watch Formula Ford or the Porsche Supercup.

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  • 170. At 4:50pm on 31 Jul 2010, Twirlip wrote:

    Obviously there will be the odd coded message but to hear the very blatant Ferrari message ...


    It was not any more blatant than the McLaren "it would help us if you conserve fuel" message.

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  • 171. At 5:37pm on 31 Jul 2010, Marantz wrote:

    I'm once again looking forward to the obligatory unforced error from Sebastian Vettel tommorrow.

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  • 172. At 6:32pm on 31 Jul 2010, Valerie Vanden Plas wrote:

    I'm afraid i totally disagree with Derek Warwick in his interview today. Don't patronise the audience by having team orders, but pretending they arent there, as he suggested. Everyone knows they exist despite the present rule. However unsatisfactory it may be in a situation like last week, it actually happens very rarely that we see the lead exchanged between teammates. Lets just accept that while teams can enter more than one driver, they are bound to want to maximise their points for the leading driver aswell as the constructors. Lets just all accept it, and get on with enjoying the sport we love!

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  • 173. At 6:53pm on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    Why would teams 'have to decide on a no1 and no2 driver', it never happened before... Prost and Senna raced each other in the same cars, so did Piquet and Mansell the idea that either of these driver partnerships was based on a no1 and no2 driver is quite frankly ludicrous!

    Let the teams decide what they want to do and leave it at that, the who problem with team orders is because the FIA tried to legislate something that would never work, trying to put in 'fairer' conditions won't solve the problem but just change when and how they occur.

    If the FIA simply demands transparency from the teams regarding team orders and allows the teams and drivers to sort the terms and conditions out amongst themselves then teams will hire drivers that are prepared to fill the roles they want them to. McLaren and Williams for example have traditionally been against team orders and are quite prepared to let drivers race each other, and when one driver is out of contention they have been prepared to ask that driver if he is prepared to support his team mate for the sake of the team. However they have been respectful enough of their drivers to generally not force the issue, I would love to have seen them asking Senna or Prost to let the other past or to try that trick with Piquet of Mansell who also hated each other.

    To me the solution seems BLOODY OBVIOUS, and it doesn't need all of the hysterics and idiocy that has been suggested by many.

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  • 174. At 6:58pm on 31 Jul 2010, oldschoolf1 wrote:

    Bravo Twirlip! I salute you, sir.

    A couple of points I haven't seen made above:

    It might be worth pointing out to those who think their opinions are important because they pay to watch F1 on TV, or pay for tickets to Grands Prix occasionally, with the implied threat that withdrawing their support will cause the sport to collapse, that the teams and drivers receive virtually none of the money you pay.

    Those of us who've been around F1 long enough to know that team orders are and always will be a fact of life, and those of us with a logical approach who understand that all arguments against team orders are irrelevant so long as a ban remains impossible to enforce, can remember a time not so long back when F1 did not receive anywhere near the kind of exposure it does today. It did just fine back then; plenty of sponsors were prepared to hand over vast sums of cash to get their logos on the cars. Indeed the spectacle was arguably greater back then, as the cars were much more powerful and more difficult to drive. Add to this the fact that there were 30-40 drivers and cars at each race weekend, compared to the current situation of struggling to get 20, and it becomes quite clear that F1 does not need your cash.

    The simple fact is that if Rob Smedley and Felipe Massa (and Ferrari team management?) had wanted to hide their team orders, they could very easily have done so, and you wouldn't have known anything about it.

    To those who are complaining because they bet money on Massa to win and feel cheated, this merely underlines the huge gulf between veteran spectators on one side (against banning team orders) and those who've been around 5 minutes on the other (in favour of a ban). If you can find one person who's been around F1 for a good while and thought Massa would be allowed to win with Alonso second, I'll pay your winnings myself.

    On the subject of a driver being forced to compromise his career by following orders to hand a win to his team-mate, if a driver consistently refuses to comply with team orders, he won't keep his job for long, and no other team will touch him either. Where does that leave his career? Ask Nelson Piquet.

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  • 175. At 7:15pm on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    I have been following the sport for all of my 38 years and thought that maybe just maybe Massa would be able to fight for the win last weekend, but wasn't at all surprised to see Ferrari crush that hope.

    I think both DC and Brundle have been quite honest this season in saying that maybe the difference between their careers and their team mates was down to how ruthless they weren't in comparison to those team mates. I don't think Alonso, Senna or many other 'top' drivers would have ever bowed to team orders and maybe thats the edge that got them to the top step when others faltered.

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  • 176. At 8:05pm on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    I agree Valerie, what Derek Warwick said today disqualify him as a steward. Basically he said that Team orders are ok as long as the spectator doesn't notice it!! And he is a steward tomorrow?? is like a judge saying, is ok to kill someone as long as we don't notice it.

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  • 177. At 8:12pm on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    or maybe boscombe he was being realistic and acknowledging that he isn't going to be screaming blue murder if a driver overtakes his team mate as no doubt many idiots will be. Afterall it is racing and team mates do like to overtake each other... not every team feels it has to orchestrate these things.

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  • 178. At 8:32pm on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    So, Cordas, he is not going to be judging if there is team orders but how well those are implemented? What's next Simon cowell as steward?

    You may call it realistic, I call it hypocritical.

    I'm sure Mr Warwick wont be screeming murder... unless is a red car overtaking another red car.

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  • 179. At 9:06pm on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

  • 180. At 9:14pm on 31 Jul 2010, lovepeacebananas wrote:

    This sport is financed through advitising,we pay and we have already made it clear that team orders on the track are unacceptable.If Ferrari wish to finance a free to view no advitising based sport then good luck to them.If they wish to compete in this sporting event stick to the rules.

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  • 181. At 9:16pm on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Very Nice Cordas, is the insult your only argument?

    You are very mature, aren't you?

    Is there anyone moderating this blog?

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  • 182. At 9:24pm on 31 Jul 2010, cordas wrote:

    No I am just fed up of the same childish posting, so sue me. If you feel my post was offensive then report it to the moderators by clicking on the 'complain about this comment' at the bottom left hand side of my comment, (its in blue text if you need more help in finding it than that).

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  • 183. At 9:31pm on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    I won't complain about your insults cordas, now that they are here lets leave them there so everybody can see what sort of person you are.

    Thank you.

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  • 184. At 10:30pm on 31 Jul 2010, Strange62 wrote:

    I think that IF it rains tomorrow, JB will win the Hungaroring!!!

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  • 185. At 11:24pm on 31 Jul 2010, boscombe wrote:

    at last someone talking some sense and without an agenda.

    BBC F1 analyst Martin Brundle tells the Inside F1 programme that the team orders rule should be scrapped as it is "unworkable".

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  • 186. At 00:52am on 01 Aug 2010, Koenig wrote:

    2 things are very bothersome.
    1 - Why don’t any of the BBC guys give Hamilton credit when he out-qualifies Button which has been 8 times in 12 races now. They have always been very quick to point out and praise Button everytime he out-qualified Hamilton!
    2 - For Whitmarsh to also ignore the fact that Hamilton is 5th on the grid tomorrow and Button a lousy 11th. Instead he says that Hamilton should have done a 10th or 2 better to beat Massa.
    Something does not smell right here!!

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  • 187. At 03:46am on 01 Aug 2010, JagJagJagJag wrote:

    I am fed up with F1 after 40 years. Eddie Ervine talks about the fans being robbed because of team orders and Derek Warick wants drivers to fake a mishandle to disguise an instructed pass. He also boasts about being brought back as a Stewart because he made money for the FIA the last time he was a Stewart. These idiotic remarks do more to bring the sport into disrepute than any instructed pass. What nonsense, we all know this is a team sport and I would rather clearly see the swap as per Massa as this lets the fans see he has deliberately given his place as opposed to us thinking he was pressurised into a mistake. We see teams in action everywhere else, even pace setters from the same stable in top flight horse racing.
    What offends me FAR MORE in F1, and what Eddie Irvine should be complaining about, are short fueling and the running on fumes for the last laps just holding position and in Hockenhiem last weekend a driver being told from the pit wall "if you don't short shift we will have no option than to turn your engine down". These practises should be banned as they do more to deprive the fans of a real race than any team driver orders. Also the ban on track testing and engine number restrictions should be done away with.
    What I used to see was racing to the flag and putting pressure on the other drivers up to and including the last corner. Valentino Rossi's pass of Lorenzo on the last corner at Barcelona last year IS RACING, not this F1 FARCE.
    F1 has become a club for Ecclestone's hangers on. None of these nobodys should be on the grid at the start. Could we imagine the same happening at the start of the Derby, Wimbledon, Agusta or the SuperBowl, NO, but Ecclestone has sucked TV into his ultra ego world.
    Bring back testing, pit stops and water cooled brakes or better still watch the V8 series from Australia.

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  • 188. At 04:57am on 01 Aug 2010, David__Hayter wrote:

    Rules ARE Rules. They are there in our lives and in our sports. If we don't have them Anarchy will prevail.
    The F1 rules state a Rule for team orders, those who break it should be punished just in real life.

    I am tired of the big teams dictating and flexing their muscles to rule over what in our lives would be considered the law.
    The fine was more pitiful than the offence, a insult to the rules.
    If Virgin had done the same it would have been a very different punishment.

    The FIA has become weak and is dictated too by the muscle teams. Another example is the ruling of how high the front wing can be in which Red Bull are clearly breaking. Another RULE broken .

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  • 189. At 09:58am on 01 Aug 2010, RacingRoz wrote:

    Apart from team orders being a breach of the FIA rules, what Ferrari did was illegal because they fixed the result of the race!!! I find it completely astounding that some people are asking for it to be removed from the rules.
    Others have made a similar comment and it's true. If it had been a horse race the trainer and jockeys involved would be arrested and most likely lose their licenses. So why should “the great F1 be treated any differently. They claim they are a sport so they should act and be judged the same way. How would people feel if it was disclosed that someone high up in Ferrari did have a large bet for the result to be Alonso then Massa and not the other way round!!! There would be total outrage and understandably. But it is a real possibility and that's why race fixing rules apply and team orders should not be allowed the moment the race starts.
    How Ferrari could try and say it was for the team was a joke, there would have been no difference to the team if Massa had won the race, they would have received the same points. The only person to benefit was Alonso.
    I feel for Massa to some degree, but in the end he did have a choice and could have just kept driving but I believe it would have cost him his job at Ferrari.
    Alonso seems to be involved in a lot of these type of incidents but mud never seems to stick. I used to be a big fan of his driving but his actions and attitude, especially when he has a competitive team mate have shown a very ugly side of the personalities being pandered to within F1.
    I saw part of an interview with Sterling Moss and miss the integrity of previous drivers. I can't understand how any driver could hold their head up high after a race when they know they did NOT EARN the win. The drivers are now so detached from reality that they feel the world should revolve around only them, Alonso and Vettel are prime examples. They are both very bad losers and don't care how they win. They have no sportsmanship which after the way Ferrari have not been penalised for their race fixing it is perhaps becoming more obvious that F1 should be no longer classed as a sport.

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  • 190. At 10:24am on 01 Aug 2010, SteedOnF1 wrote:

    Before we can clarify the rules, we need to clarify the problem.

    At Hockenheim, we didn't see 'Team' orders - we saw 'Driver' orders. For me, Team orders are when the team gains an advantage at the expense of another team - eg backing up following cars. Driver orders are when a driver gains an advantage at the expense of his teammate - eg Massa being told to move over.

    No advantage was gained by Ferrari in the Constructors championship at Hockenheim. So not a team order, but a driver order. The advantage was gained by Alonso in the Drivers championship. Massa was disadvantaged. Disgracefully IMO.

    So the solution is simple - team orders are fine, driver orders are not.

    Should there be a conflict between the two, then the driver takes priority, so you can't give a team order that disadvantages one of your drivers, but you can give a driver order that disadvantages the team. This puts the driver first, which I believe is what the fans want. If the teams want to put themselves first then they should be on the podium not the drivers.

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  • 191. At 10:41am on 01 Aug 2010, SteedOnF1 wrote:

    To add to my last comment offering a solution, this one deals with prevention and punishment.

    To prevent a driver like Massa (nice guy, loyal to the team) being placed in an invidious position, the issuing of a superlicence should contain a stipulation that he (or she hopefully one day) cannot accept a team or driver order that will disadvantage himself with regard to his championship position.

    Any driver that accepts such an order should be fined not less than one year's salary/retainer.

    Similarly, the contract that enables a team to race, should contain a stipulation that driver orders that disadvantage one of their drivers are not allowed.

    Any team that makes such an order should forfeit all of their commercial rights income from Bernie for the season.

    And that would be an end to that problem.

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  • 192. At 10:48am on 01 Aug 2010, Sheikh Serajul Hakim wrote:

    I am not a Ferrai fan anyways and I totally agree how bad they managed the whole scenario...but doesn't it imply that if someone steals and cheats, it has to be done decently - make it picture perfect? Like the way Hekki let Hamilton pass on the same turn in Germany 2008? Is it the true spirit we are talking about? I don't buy that at all!

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  • 193. At 11:06am on 01 Aug 2010, rovinman wrote:

    Let the FIA change their ruling as follows :
    "No teams shall instruct drivers to allow their team-mate to overtake them, until at least 2/3rds way through the season, AND, the other driver has no chance of the Driver's championship himself. That team-mate shall then make every endeavour to aid their team-mate to win. Ten second penalties / Drive through penalties shall be imposed by the FIA as appropriate".
    That should wake them up, but it will still be got round by the really devious teams.

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  • 194. At 11:09am on 01 Aug 2010, SteedOnF1 wrote:

    On the subject of the importance of the fans, it seems that a lots of people including the teams are missing the point.

    The opinions of all the fans are important, and if some teams and Schumacher treat us like idiots by saying that moving Massa over is ok so long as the fans don't realise, then they will see the sport decline. Why?

    The BBC gives F1 massive coverage because there is a massive audience. No audience, no coverage. Same for commercial TV. They cover it because of the advertising revenue. They only get advertising revenue if there is an audience. At the circuit, advertisers are there because of the number of people watching on TV around the world. Again, no audience, no revenue. Same with sponsorship - sponsors are there to get their brand in front of the TV. No TV audience no sponsors.

    If the TV audience declines, then adverting revenue and sponsorship declines.

    So, to the insulting teams and drivers, you are only super rich because of the TV fanbase. Beware of offending too many armchair fans. Without us, you are dead in the water.

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  • 195. At 11:29am on 01 Aug 2010, Nick Meikle wrote:

    Thanks Jonathan for tackling this subject and canvassing the pit lane. It's vital for us fans to get a good feel for the Teams' take on the Hockenheim switch by Ferrari.
    Much has been said so far, and hopefully FOTA will exert their considerable intellect and understanding of the issues at stake to help FIA resolve this issue of team orders more realistically into the future.
    However, that said, in recalling my feelings at the time they were: termendous sympathy for Massa as he was legitmately ahead; understanding for Ferrari for doing what they were trying to achieve, but shock and dismay as to how the Team, let be said as well, Massa and Smedley handled it. They helped pour scorn on the team as much as Domenicalli's poor leadership. However additionally, Massa needed not to have accepted the coded order, just as Hamilton didn't have to go along with the Melbourne deception last year. Massa could have pretended his radio wasn't working, plain ignored it, or in his own way subtley given Alonso the lead if he felt he should do so for the team's sake.
    These drivers are all grown men who know the rules as well. Massa in a sense is as guilty as the team is.
    Bottom line though, I agree that the drivers do not deserve to be punished and that the Team should be punished, if it is felt that more punishment is warranted.
    Thank you.

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  • 196. At 11:32am on 01 Aug 2010, Del wrote:

    I hate the excuse that all the teams do it that doesn't make it right, rules are rules and it is down to the FIA to grow up and stand up to enforce the rules they set properly. Teams will always push the boundaries that is there job it is the job of the FIA to clearly state the rules and enforce them cos they aren't doing the job right and strict this caused confusion and arguments that make professional teams look childish however we need to remember this is worth big money for the teams and is not childish to them. It is clearly the fault of the FIA and lets be honest they are known for being wishy-washy when it comes to enforcing the rules they make. I played Darts at a fairly high level and when they banned alcohol from the stage it meant exactly that team orders is no different if it's banned it's banned end of and the teams need to be honest and fair enough to adhere to it. Who runs this sport the FIA or the teams? This has been going on for years and never been dealt with properly the FIA need to take a clear stance now and make a statement for the fans sake as well as the teams. They can lift the ban or leave but for goodness sake make your mind up and realise it's hurting your sport! I would love the BBC to get an FIA official and press them on it so the fans can get a clear picture and maybe start to understand why some things get picked up and some don't. On another note is it now ok these days for quick laps to be ok even if all 4 wheels go over the white line on the exit of a corner these days?

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  • 197. At 11:41am on 01 Aug 2010, Del wrote:

    Great points SteedOnF1 I agree totally. Also I have to say I feel so sorry for Massa not only for having to pull over but also how nice of his boss knowing he is the first 1 in the media firing line I would have loved him to pull the radio and carry on. I liken it to when as a van driver etc your boss tries to make you drive an overloaded vehicle they know it is wrong but hey it isn't there licence and they aren't the ones explaining to the Ministry Of Transport.

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  • 198. At 11:43am on 01 Aug 2010, a hartley wrote:

    If its a race then they should race and not have the result decided in a villa in Italy, the simple facts are that the fans are being cheated out of the very thing they treasure most fair competion, I am probably the only person who did not agree with how AS sabotaged the start of a GP and still became World Champion, do it fairly or it will become a farce as is all this talk of its the team that counts that was obviosly not what Massa felt last week.

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  • 199. At 11:51am on 01 Aug 2010, Ian wrote:

    I don't understand why everyone is so surprised by this - everyone knows that teams have been doing this all the time, ban or no ban. No team wants to see a RedBull episode and have their drivers take each other out, especially when they are running 1-2.

    Granted, the blatant way in which Ferrari did it exceeded even their usual arrogance, and it is hard to defend having a clear No1 driver this early in the season. That said, Ferrari have a recent history of working with a dominant primary driver and a supporting one.

    I think either we need to be realistic and allow team orders, and if we don't we have to accept that it's going to happen subtlety anyway. There are plenty of ways a team can do this, the only real question for me is why Ferrari were so blatant about it - I suspect it may have been exactly to bring this debate about.

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  • 200. At 11:57am on 01 Aug 2010, Del wrote:

    I have to say I have never been a Ferrari fan but please after all Massa's effort and hard work to even be sat in an F1 car this season his team chose to treat him like that, well done Ferrari that helped your drivers confidence not. Simply disgusting treatment of their driver and fans etc. Is this not bringing the sport into disrepute? I think so.

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  • 201. At 12:02pm on 01 Aug 2010, lesmess wrote:

    Thousands of F1 fans bet good money on Massa to win at reasonable odds. They have all lost the money they bet, this cannot be right. The action of Ferrari & Massa changed the result.

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  • 202. At 12:05pm on 01 Aug 2010, Del wrote:

    It has only gone on for ages cos the powers that be have been totally useless even though they made the rules

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  • 203. At 12:19pm on 01 Aug 2010, Del wrote:

    I obviously have a lot of respect for DC but my word his comments really annoyed me in that saying it is part of Grand Prix racing please will you all wake up whether it is right or wrong the rules state it isn't allowed to be part of F1

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  • 204. At 12:20pm on 01 Aug 2010, boscombe wrote:

    Everybody agree that there is team orders in all teams and all races, still only Ferrari has been punished punished.

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  • 205. At 12:22pm on 01 Aug 2010, Ian wrote:

    @ 202 - But Del, surely 'the powers' have been 'useless' because it's almost unenforceable? Yes, there is lots of technical data, but can that be guaranteed to *prove* bending or breaking the rules on every occasion?
    All you end up with under the current rules is deceit.
    I agree that in a ideal world it would be good to see everyone race everyone else, but this is not an ideal world and it's never going to be allowed to happen, there is just too much money at stake for the teams.

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  • 206. At 12:28pm on 01 Aug 2010, craigganmore wrote:

    What is it with David Coulthard, MArtin Brundle et al? Can they switch their brains to 'engaged' please before they open their mouths! If Ferrari were honestly saying 'the team comes first' then it would not have mattered which Ferrari driver cam in first - the TEAM would have had exactly the same number of points. It is categorically NOT about the team but about the team favouring one DRIVER over the other. The only reason why this is is because this is the only way Alonso will be able to reach the McLaren and RedBull drivers. If McLaren and RedBull had employed these team orders earlier in the season then one driver from each team would have been out of sight of Ferrari. Therefore the FIA MUST punish Ferrari to ensure that it does not unfairly discriminate against McLaren and RedBull, something which 'no action' definitely would. This season has been brilliant and it has been because, despite Eddie Jordan's verocious appetite to create controversy when there is none, the two top teams have not employed team orders and, as a result, there has been fantastic wheel to wheel action between drivers in identical cars. If Martin and David do not value this then they are completely out of touch with what us viewer want to see. Do not defend any teams that employ team orders - they are against the rules and they are against the spirit of racing.

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  • 207. At 12:29pm on 01 Aug 2010, Ian wrote:

    @ 204 - Boscombe, the only reason Ferrari got punished is because it was so blatent. Thats the mockery of an unenforceable law. If you are discreet you get away with it.
    But frankly, by being so obvious Ferrari were asking for trouble - if you agree that other teams do this often, why would anyone make it so obvious other than to provoke a debate? And as for punished, they have lost no points and the 'fine' is peanuts to them! If they had had points removed, or grid penalty for today, they would have been 'punished'.

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  • 208. At 12:41pm on 01 Aug 2010, MrCharmschool wrote:

    Michael Schumacher say's he agrees with the team orders. He would do, it's benefitted him so much before.........Although bet he wouldn't if it happened against him!!! I must admit though, that as it's a team sport then if it benefits "THE TEAM" then ok, but if it's just to benefit "the driver" then, no I don't agree with it. I also don't understand what position it puts the bookies and those that bet on the driver that has had to give way, surely it's technically race fixing, and therefore illegal????

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  • 209. At 12:42pm on 01 Aug 2010, hat313 wrote:

    Which ever way you look at this it's the rule that is at fault, not the drivers nor the teams.

    From last weeks orders to Massa, to being told to hold station, changing pit stop strategy during the race and slowing a driver's pace to save the engine or tyres. They all can have an impact on the result of the race.

    Let's not be niave, scrap the rule!

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  • 210. At 12:50pm on 01 Aug 2010, get real wrote:

    I can't believe what I'm reading. Massa must have known that Ferrari would prefer him to let Alonso through. He has no chance of winning the championship and Alonso needs every point he can get. Why did he have to wait for team orders? The point is that Massa has no chance of winning the championship - otherwise there would have been no need for him to give up his lead. If the point situation between him and Alonso were reversed and Alonso was leading, then Alonso would have been ordered to do the same. If Massa had of been less of a sook, and had been more discrete in letting Alonso through, then Ferrari wouldn't be in this predicament. The same would happen at Red Bull or McLaren. It hasn't yet because their drivers are all in contention.

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  • 211. At 12:51pm on 01 Aug 2010, Andy wrote:

    Whilst i understand that F1 is a team sport, the rule on team orders is absolute, therefore the drivers when racing are individuals and should race. The 'Team' side of the sport should onle apply to the management structure, Research and development, sponsorship, resouces etc. Had i laid a large bet on Massa to win and Ferrari as such have influenced the result for gain, is this not 'game fixing' and why is it not being treated in the same way as a boxer for throwing a fight or jockey for throwing a race (this also is a team sport whereas the teams have names the horses relate to a stable name or trainer with often more than one horse/jockey, the jockey/horse race to the end!, Athletics, Moto GP? Why are the bookies not taking them to court? I'm sure they lost more with Alonso to win than Massa. Would i personnally be able to take Ferrari to court to pay me out for the winnings i should have been paid out for? If its a team sport ie Ferrari to win rather than a driver the bet made may have been different and i may have had a 'chance' to receive winnings for a legitimate bet!

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  • 212. At 12:56pm on 01 Aug 2010, Del wrote:

    Oh don't get me wrong I agree what I am saying is how poor they are to even introduce rules they can't enforce etc. If they need to remove rules then do so or reformat them to something they can manage.

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  • 213. At 12:57pm on 01 Aug 2010, Mick - Dances with Fast Cars wrote:

    If the FIA got rid of the Drivers Championship and genuinely made it a team sport, we would only have the Constructors Championship Title to worry about and possibly no team orders issue.
    Should we consider a Fair Play Championship and a Greenest Team Championship?
    This is a "Who is the BEST driver sport" so the Drivers Championship is primary reason for the existance of the FIA BUT...its the manufacturers who allow them to play so they must do what the team want them to. SO get rid of the rule prohibiting team orders. We the people will know if our favourite driver is the best.
    Forsa Felipe

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  • 214. At 1:44pm on 01 Aug 2010, noula wrote:

    How the hell do you get onto this muched talked ( at least by the BBC blogger ) about "TRACKER". Three of us have spent half an hour trying to access it to no avail,.it seems to be a joke at the moment.

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  • 215. At 2:48pm on 01 Aug 2010, louis1304 wrote:

    Every team did it and wil continue to do it, Eddy Jordan gave teamorders, David Coulthard did it for Wiliams and Mclaren. Formule 1 is a teamsport, i do not see what is wrong with it.

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  • 216. At 3:08pm on 01 Aug 2010, Andy wrote:

    Rules!!!! If the drivers shouldn't race each other there should not be a 'Driver's championship as well as constructors.

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  • 217. At 3:19pm on 01 Aug 2010, blunnbottle3 wrote:

    Schu should be banned before he kills some one

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  • 218. At 4:04pm on 01 Aug 2010, Kris wrote:

    I only hope that F1 teams and the ruling body of F1, will allow refuelling next year, since most races tend to be follow the leader after the first few laps.
    Also making drivers do fuel management is not the correct concept in my view, we the public want to see {I might be wrong} teams racing and competing against one another and trying to outwit eachother when pit stops will occur, since this is what F1 used to be like.
    I do believe that F1 in general has taken a step back to the concept of being on the front line of technology.

    Please bring back refuelling, atleast the viewer will see better races and tactics.

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  • 219. At 4:15pm on 01 Aug 2010, mark cadwallander wrote:

    can any one tell me do all drivers have to replace the steering wheel after the race, as mark webber did not ???

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  • 220. At 5:15pm on 01 Aug 2010, Marantz wrote:

    I hate to brag about my own post but I got is spot on with my comment in post 171.

    I wonder what further blunders Vettel has in store for us for the remaining races of this season. We should be in for a real treat.

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  • 221. At 6:09pm on 01 Aug 2010, BillMitch wrote:

    Just thought I would point out to the ignorati that the Race Stewards imposed the maximum fine they could i.e. $100,000. Yes it is paltry in relation to Ferrari's pot of gold but it is the biggest the stewards can impose so stop blaming them. It is the outcome of the WMRC that will determine the final size of the fine. However, like most cynics here I suspect you will have plenty to moan about then.

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  • 222. At 6:19pm on 01 Aug 2010, BillMitch wrote:

    On the subject of team orders and WDC v's WCC. How about this:

    The WCC is as it is at present but with the team orders rule removed. Team orders are declared openly.

    The WDC is separate with individual drivers (or perhaps driver teams). For each race the drivers draw their cars. Which car they drive (or their team drives) is down to luck. That at a stroke stops constructors favouring one driver all season long. It would also raise interesting issues if team orders conflict with drivers wishes, probably negating team orders even being possible unless a driver team also.

    FIA Listening? Reduced team costs but more money making opportunities!

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  • 223. At 6:37pm on 01 Aug 2010, FAIRPLAY56 wrote:

    Lots of money involved, lots of politics and rules not well defined in most cases, requiring Charlie Wighton and team to subjectively apply penalties as best as they can but feel they should be quicker on taking decisions as this affects the outcome of the race. It's a team sport, that's why there is a contrcutors chamnpionship so there must be team rules. What scares me are actions like Michael Schumacher today - totally reckless, he has got such a good reputation as a F1 driver please team don't let him spoil it.

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  • 224. At 8:00pm on 01 Aug 2010, downforce wrote:

    Before the team bosses throw away the rule book, I really think people need to look long and hard at the existing regulations.

    There are pages and pages on the start procedure, safety car procedure, technical specs of the car, podium procedure etc. But when you come to the conduct of "The Race", Regulation 39 there are just 2 rules 39.1 which is concise and unequivocal - teams must not interfere with the outcome of the race. and 39.2 obeying the blue flags and lights displayed by the marshals.

    So that's 3.5 pages on what happens on the podium and 3.5 lines on the conduct of the race.

    Gives you an indication of where the governing body sees its priorities.

    Rules don't work because they have been weakly drafted not because they are unenforceable.

    The FIA and WMSC need to look at the rules afresh, before incidents like Ferrari at Hockenheim and Schumacher on Barrichello become the norm.

    Free racing, with sporting conduct is what most fans want, we need a set of rules that legislate for this along with a set of predetermined penalties.

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  • 225. At 9:05pm on 01 Aug 2010, DrownedWorld wrote:

    F1's fundamental design is poor. It does not lend itself to sportsmanship and fair play.

    The inability of the stewards to spot race-fixing has become very clear during last year's crashgate scandal. Remember, it took a whistle-blower to bring out the full extent of cheating that took place. I am fairly certain that there is a large number of such fixed races.

    I suspect that this poor design is deliberately being perpetuated by the likes of Ferrari and other big teams for the obvious reason of maintaining the status quo. It is up to the fans to wise up and turn away from this non-sport.

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  • 226. At 11:27pm on 01 Aug 2010, Rudy Rudy wrote:

    Drivers Championship should not exist. Only Team Championship should exist. There is no point in having a drivers championship if they are prevented from winning.

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  • 227. At 00:17am on 02 Aug 2010, Rizlajohn wrote:

    Much too many comments on this wall for me to read through them all, So I apologise if my views have already been stated, or if some of you disagree, Well actually I dont care.
    My response is to JLs question.

    "Or is there a middle way that would see the sport's law-makers provide a clarification that would specify precisely the circumstances when a team would be allowed to apply team orders and when they wouldn't?"

    The reason I think everyone is up in arms about this is because it was "Massa", probably the most likeable unoffensive driver in F1 at the moment (and I say this as a lewis/jenson fan, with no apology)
    the point is that it was much too early in the season for Ferrari to make a call like that. Team orders will exist no matter what anyone says so clarification is the only answer. So I think it should be based on points accumulated, points that are still available to accumulate and should be restricted to the last five races of the season. Thats plain simple and understandable and I think everyone would be able to live that.

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  • 228. At 09:00am on 02 Aug 2010, cdubb wrote:

    Commentators keep saying 'everyone does it' but do they? Sure they have a team strategy and use both cars tactically. However, team strategy is not what us, the fans, are angry about. We're angry about not seeing racing; specifically we're angry about drivers being forced out of the way for their team-mates. That's not racing. People will bemoan that Alonso was faster - I don't deny it - but he was behind Massa. it doesn't matter how fast your are in practice, or qualifying - it matters where you finish the race. Alonso didn't perform as well as Mass, that's why he was in second. When all is said and done, this is a sport for our (the fans) entertainment, without us putting our money into the sport it's just a Sunday go-carting meet. When it ceases to become entertaining people will stop watching. Making drivers move out of the way for team-mates is not entertaining.

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  • 229. At 09:27am on 02 Aug 2010, benhogan wrote:

    The debate about team orders pales into insignificance compared to the reckless manoevre of Scumacher at the Hungarian GP. If one drove on the road in such a manner I think the charges would be very serious.
    However, Schumi is not the only guilty party. Look at the move by Vettel in the British GP. It seems this will go on until there is a serious accident.
    A ten place grid penalty is too lenient. A one race ban would be more of a clear message.

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  • 230. At 11:17am on 02 Aug 2010, cdubb wrote:

    This is a response to DrownedWorld's comment:

    "F1's fundamental design is poor. It does not lend itself to sportsmanship and fair play."

    On the contrary, the huge amount of regulation and checking of equipment and post race punishment using TV replay makes F1 fundamentally a difficult sport to cheat in. Compare it to football for instance which is subject to constant cheating almost every match with constant diving and flailing around on the floor. No post match punishment is dealt out for flagrant breaching of sportsmanship and fair play. F1 will always be vulnerable to the more technical and coorprate cheating we have seen in recent years. But fair play, that is seen much more in F1 then in most other sports, hence the fall out over the Massa Alonso issue.

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  • 231. At 11:28am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    The FIA should make it mandatory that a driver's contract excludes team orders, of all the people involved in team orders surely the driver is the only one who can say if they are told to back off, and they should be released from the position of the team dictating orders.

    Massa showed his loyalty to the team, but I'm sure in essence was really avoiding bad blood with them. If his contract staed that he was free to make racing decisions for himself I'm sure he would have at least triedto win.
    Make it mandatory that all drivers contracts have a 'decide for yourself' clause.

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  • 232. At 11:35am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    The thing about team orders is where does it end, can Red Bull dictate to Torro Rosso? Mercedes and Renault have engines in more than one team, do they have a say?

    Does this mean Adidas and Nike can start dictating the result in other sports, team orders is okay because 'it's a business after all'.

    We could just have one car per team couldn't we, thereby saving money for the sport which is the thing this year, or why not have three drivers and cars per team and one of them could have a rocket launcher, that might promote over-taking. Give me a cut of Massa's 'bung' and I'll stop posting.

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  • 233. At 11:38am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    226 has a good point.

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  • 234. At 11:44am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    151 has a good point too! Good idea.

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  • 235. At 11:48am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    There was a lot of talk from Anthony Davidson (I love the practice commentarys) about testing time and getting new drivers into the sport, why not have a clear No1 and No2 driver by having a ruling that teams have to have a rookie (by whatever definition) in the second car, then we know who's gonna let who through.

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  • 236. At 11:49am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    15 - I'd love to live in the simple world you seem to inhabit.

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  • 237. At 11:51am on 02 Aug 2010, harryXJR wrote:

    4 - have to agree with you about the commentary, stop rambling mate, you change the subject at least four times to per sentence, even you must have noticed by the time you get near a full stop you've forgotten the initial subject of the sentence? Get Anthony Davidson or Karum Chandok in there. Brundle - keep it up.

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  • 238. At 12:30pm on 02 Aug 2010, Stefan Reszczynski wrote:

    Fernando Alonso should be relegated to second position where he belongs and Phillipe Massa should rightfully be declared the winner and the correct points awarded to him for winning. If the FIA do not punish Ferrari for blatantly breaking the rules what is the point of having rules and stewards to enforce them. If a driver cannot win properly and fairly it not only diminishes him it diminishes the whole sport.

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  • 239. At 12:34pm on 02 Aug 2010, Nicola wrote:

    I think people don't understand that the F1 is more about business than sport. For Ferrari is more about business than any other team. All they want is winning both championships. It means a lot to them. Period. Montezemolo summed it up very well saying "whoever races for Ferrari, races for the team and not for himself". When drivers sign a contract with Ferrari they know this. One will have at some point to play second fiddle, this is not on the contract, but it's imperative when that time comes. Massa had his chance in 2008 and was helped by Raikkonen. This year he will have to help Alonso. Next year who knows. And by the way Ferrari is not the only one behaving like this. They just do it very blatantly and arrogantly. If it's the style you poeple don't like, then fair enough, other than that they're all a bunch of business men. Where is the sport in all this? Nowhere. Still, people follow the F1 and like the races. I do too, I just avoid deceiving myself thinking I am watching something genuine.

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  • 240. At 12:43pm on 02 Aug 2010, Realist of Worcester wrote:

    Rule 20.1 states that "The driver must drive the car alone and unaided."

    Under this rule ANY communication from the team to the driver should be considered as assistance. I think however the traditional pit board (laps to go, position, gap forward, gap backward) should be retained as an exception to this rule.

    Hence ban pits-to-car radio communications of any sort and the problem of team orders and team assistance goes away. The driver must make his own decisions based on the information available from his car.

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  • 241. At 1:27pm on 02 Aug 2010, Bannor wrote:

    @craigganmore (206) - I agree 100%!! Good post!

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  • 242. At 2:39pm on 02 Aug 2010, DrownedWorld wrote:

    @cdubb #230

    F1 is riddled with conflict of objectives and interests.

    People arguing that team orders are part of life are telling us that at times teams prefer one driver over the other in certain circumstances. These circumstances arise because F1 fails to recongnise that its basic design is not meeting the objective of honest racing and fair play.

    Flavio Briatore was not only team boss for Renault, but he was also agent for number of drivers including Renault drivers. Which other sport allows such blatant conflict of interest.

    Bernie Ecclestone, owner of commercial rights, sits in FIA council. Isn't the conflict of interest obvious here?

    FIA president Jean Todt's son is agent for Felipe Massa. Isn't there a conflict of interest?

    F1's primary commitment is not towards racing, but towards protecting interests of big teams such as Ferrari and people like Bernie Ecclestone.

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  • 243. At 3:27pm on 02 Aug 2010, greenlegend wrote:

    I cannot believe that, eight days having elapsed since the Hockenheim debacle, I am the only poster here to have picked this up! One word: Santander. This is a Spanish company whose investment in Ferrari came as a package with Fernando Alonso. The race itself was sponsored by that company. The CEO was Ferrari's guest that weekend. When (thanks largely to Herr Vettel's murderous lunge at Alonso off the grid) it became clear that a Ferrari win was a real possibility, the contingency plan came into play whereby Alonso would take the flag in a big PR rush and justify the Santander squillions. Although Massa undoubtedly was aware of such a scenario, he had had such a great start that the script got ignored until the desires of the sponsor took precedence over fair play and the Scuderia cornered Rob Smedley into delivering the now-infamous words of betrayal. I feel sorry for Smedley who, until that point, had been issuing words of encouragement to his man and even to Stefano Domenicalli who, I believe, was as much a fall guy as Smedley and Massa. Some have commented that the race was decided on the pitwall rather than on the track. I say it was won in the boardroom. Wherever you put your allegiance as a follower or fan of F1, what happened at Hockenheim offends are natural sense of fair play. Team orders and the arguments for and against notwithstanding, it was wrong.

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  • 244. At 3:48pm on 02 Aug 2010, Claire wrote:

    If this had been any other team cheating there would be no question of additional punishment. So why should Ferrari be any different and as for Alonso well he has to be the most unprofessional sports man ever. He really throws his toys about when he dont get his own way. Grow up Alonso and Farrari own up you Cheated dont treat F1 fans like they are stupid.

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  • 245. At 4:04pm on 02 Aug 2010, ozzieowen wrote:

    Surely a sport is there for the fans? Without the fans a sport is nothing. Now im not saying that F1 should bend to the will of every fans wish but in this case they must be able to see that the general concensus is that we (the fans) don't want to see moves like this mid season when the championship is wide open.

    I think the best solution is to allow it for the final 3 races OR if one driver mathmatically cannot win the championship. I would also not be opposed to just saying there is a complete ban on it and if it is deemed that team orders have manipulated a result then the team and drivers lose all points.

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  • 246. At 4:40pm on 02 Aug 2010, frogandspanner wrote:

    Team principals emphasise that F1 is a team sport, but to the public it isn't: the individual racer is more important than the team.

    So, there is a conflict. Perhaps we could remove this by permitting each team only one car, requiring thim to provide an equal car to a junior competitor at a fixed price. In this way competition and fairness would be maintained, new teams and drivers would have a better chance, but the top manufacturers would still get the kudos that they deserve.

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  • 247. At 6:01pm on 02 Aug 2010, F1Nut wrote:

    Instead of Jonathan Legard “canvassing opinion among leading members of teams”, he should perhaps ask the opinion of the fans. I would think the majority would vote to ban team orders completely.
    When you watch a race, no matter what sport, you expect to see competition amongst the individual participants. It becomes frustrating for the viewer when drivers do not race against each other and must be more so for the driver that has to give way (ask Felipe in private).
    Without the fans (both track side and TV spectator) F1 would not exist, contrary to what ‘Team’ bosses think.

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  • 248. At 9:56pm on 02 Aug 2010, robert pitcher wrote:

    Motor racing is to me simply that - a race to see who is the best driver. Hyperthetically, if it was, say, Nico in front of Alonso, and Nico was a fraction slower than Alonso, and Alonso was not able to ovetake because Nico was a better driver, there is no way that Nico would "move over". And Nico would have then lead to the finish, and won, deservedly. Team orders spoil the whole spirit of the sport, and leave a very bad taste. If sanity were allowed to prevail, then Alonso and Massa should have their points swopped, Massa did finish the race so if he had not been sutly enticed he would have won.

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  • 249. At 10:16pm on 02 Aug 2010, Lonbridge wrote:

    Now that a date has been announced for the hearing, I'm still seeing suggestions in the media that it might be WCC points that are docked from Ferrari, not WDC points.
    Seeing as the team orders were issued to influence WDC points, not WCC, surely any penalty given should be aimed at the WDC. Or both, if it were to be made abundantly clear to all the teams that this should never happen again.
    Ferrari shouldn't be allowed to retain the WDC points as they currently stand. At the very least, the standings should reflect the fact that Massa may well have won, had Ferrari not cheated in favour of Alonso.
    I have to wonder why the media, in general, are watering down suggested penalties. Who's pulling their strings?

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  • 250. At 10:30pm on 02 Aug 2010, Onthebutton wrote:

    I am 29minutes through the F1 Forum...I have just paused it to write this comment....

    I have just lost much respect for DC, EJ & MB....The way you guys harped on about Schumacher was appalling and cringeworthy....

    MB excusing Senna from driving Prost off @ 130mph in Japan because "He declared he was going to do it before the race" is utterly irresponsible of MB...To compare that to what Schumacher has done is an insult to MSC and it smacks of your own bitterness towards MSC - maybe from having been soundly beaten by him as a teammate...?

    DC then exclaiming about Schumacher hittinmg the back of DCs car @ Spa in 1998 as though it was MSC @ fault when DC lifted off...on the racing line??? I am disappointed just blatantly fibbed on TV just to strike home a very weak way you are covering this storm in a teacup between RB & MSC today....

    As for EJ...all you have done is say whatever provokes controversy @ any are not commentating with consistency.....

    Jake, you are doing a great job of trying to add in some neutral views...

    Overall I am very saddened to see the BBC F1 coverage degenerate in quality over the last 5 or 6 races....

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  • 251. At 11:33pm on 02 Aug 2010, Timmy-worksop wrote:

    I think like EJ said, it causes issues with drivers to have team orders. This issue only seems to be an issue now all because the rule has been broken. Does this mean that every time a rule is not liked or broken they just want to get this amended. I think that team orders are bad for the sport myself. Massa is there to win just like Alonso, why would anybody play 2nd fiddle and put there life in danger.

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  • 252. At 10:40am on 03 Aug 2010, Basel wrote:

    - Article 39.1 of the 2010 Sporting Regulations ("Team orders which interfere with a race result are prohibited")

    Everything said on radio is a team order, and everything done in a strategy interferes with the result of the race, if a driver is asked to pit after his teammate, that might give the teammate the advantage, or vise versa, this means every team should be penalized on every race!

    Dont get me wrong, I wanted Massa to win, and hated the fact that they asked him to let Alonso pass. i just dont agree that ferrari should be penalized

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  • 253. At 6:25pm on 03 Aug 2010, AGFA wrote:

    The Team Orders debacle has revealed a sad fact; many people in F1 are dishonest. In the aftermath, Michael Schumacher said that it was unfortunate that the Alonso overtake was so obvious - it should have been done in a subtler way. Before the Hungarian GP, Derek Warwick, a driver that I admired for his grit and determination, revealed a similarly dishonest attitude saying that a driver could run wide at a corner to allow his teammate through. And he was there as a steward! The Team Orders ruling was a bad rule made by the FIA at a time that it Max Moseley was in charge. It was probably the worst rule made during that singularly inept period of F1 rule-making. We have seen this year that there are a number of rules that are inadequately framed. F1 is about racing. All the best teams are run by racers. F1 has also always been a team sport. Team orders are inevitable where ateams have two drivers and only one can win the driver championship. Team orders should be allowed but they should be open and, where possible, announced in advanced. If Ferrari stated that Alonso would be their preferred winner, then we all know where we stand in advance of a race. From a betting point of view, there should be no problem in framing bets that pay out if the team clearly forces one driver to give way to another. Personnaly, I prefer the Williams way; let drivers race and go for the Constructors Championship and leave the drivers to fight for who will win the Drivers Championship.

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  • 254. At 00:19am on 04 Aug 2010, Frank Speaker wrote:

    It should not be up to the FIA. Viewers and ticket holders pay to see a RACE and thats what the drivers should do. Race fixing should remain banned. Where is sport? Its not about money, its about the competition. One way is to allow teams to have only 1 driver and encourage more teams to take part. We are losing the excitement and F1 is becoming boring to watch yet there are more contenders than ever for the title. We need more overtaking possibilities and for team mates to fight for the title. FIA will go the way of the music industry and destroy the very thing its trying to sqeeze money out of. Play Up Play up and Play the game!

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  • 255. At 7:29pm on 08 Aug 2010, Scott D wrote:

    Ferrari must be punished further, be it a one race ban or points deducted; we the F1 fans accept team orders but only when it is mathematically impossible for the teams other driver not to be able to win the world championship title!!!

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  • 256. At 02:05am on 09 Aug 2010, fatpigonasofaallday wrote:

    Johnathan legard! i chalenge you to a comtary competition..... simple talk through of a single lap of a track of your choice from the last 3 years and we leave it down to the public to decide whos the best email me at if your man enough

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  • 257. At 12:29pm on 11 Aug 2010, ferrariforever wrote:

    Team orders are part of team sport and F1 is a team sport. On the cycle tours of France etc., the team work hard to get their leader to the front and then move aside before the finishing line. No world sporting code rule against this so why bang on about F1.

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  • 258. At 2:23pm on 12 Aug 2010, Bradster wrote:

    6th should be pronounced "siksth" in other words "six" with a "th" after it.
    Not "sikth" as you pronounce it umpteen times during each grand prix.

    After all, you don't say "sikteenth" do you?!

    Rant over. Feedback given.

    Martin B. is great.

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  • 259. At 3:22pm on 17 Aug 2010, maria cardoso wrote:

    "No", said one team principal. "There needs to be a deterrent. Otherwise you'll have another Austria 2002 when there was no ban on team orders yet Ferrari made the sport look stupid."

    From where I sit, it was that clown Rubens Barrichello who made the sport look stupid, not Ferrari. Either let MS pass with discretion or dont let MS pass, but doing so one meter from the finish line was totally unacceptable, and oh so Rubens! Michael felt embarrassed and tried to give the podium to cry-baby - and the rest is history.

    FIA must decide whether F1 is a team sport or not. If not, let's have one car per team. End of story.

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  • 260. At 3:17pm on 21 Aug 2010, Alano_Spanol wrote:

    Video-Reply Against Possible Sanction - September, 8 - 2010 (WMSC)

    Google - YouTube:

    F1 Team Orders Hockenheim 2008 Vs 2010 [By Mouse]

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  • 261. At 3:18pm on 21 Aug 2010, Alano_Spanol wrote:

    That's the question...

    Team Orders?.. No..It's Just FIA´s Hypocrisy

    What is the difference between the action of McLaren/Lewis/Kovalainen in 2008 and Ferrari/Alonso/Massa in 2010?

    They did the same but the penalty was not the same ..

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  • 262. At 8:43pm on 08 Sep 2010, Nik wrote:

    In light of today's FIA ruling on team orders:

    Team orders - The Chinook solution.

    Here's my suggested solution to the team orders debacle which can keep fans very happy as well as allowing teams to take decisions to give themselves the chance of the best possible result.

    1. If a team want their driver 'A' to pass their driver 'B' without risking a competitive overtake they should be allowed to instruct their drivers accordingly.

    However, this advance of position does not gain driver 'A' any further championship points until or unless he then passes the next opponent's car ahead on the track. Then, the points for both passes will in effect, become valid.

    2. This would firstly allow open and transparent team orders which fans and opposing teams would not object to. Secondly, for the fans, it would strongly encourage a competitive drive from the passing driver who would be 'forced' to try and complete a competitive overtake to realise/activate any points advantage.

    3. If driver 'A' fails to make another pass, the points/position allocation stay as if the team order swap didn't take place.
    Therefor the team can't gain a championship advantage by manipulating the race but if their driver 'A' truly is 'faster' he will have the opportunity to use that speed to their benefit.

    Driver 'B' won't feel disadvantaged points-wise because his team mate won't be taking points off him for free. Driver A will have to go on and pass car/s that 'B' apparently couldn't.

    I guess smarter minds will point out some fatal flaw but to me it looks fair, transparent and easily enforceable.

    PS. If the team is already in a first and second place (so there's no other car to overtake) they've earned the right to put the cars how they chose.

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  • 263. At 3:50pm on 09 Sep 2010, F1Nut wrote:

    In view of FIA's decision not to penalise Ferrari further I would just like to say what a opportunity missed to show the world that there is no corruption in F1.
    Rules are there to be uphelp.
    As a fan I want to see competitive RACING between drivers. My support goes to the driver first and the team second. The pending review of the rule must continue to ban team orders for the sake of the sport.

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  • 264. At 04:24am on 15 Sep 2010, cosicave wrote:

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the House Rules.

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