Why Ferrari have ruined of Formula One.

Monza 2010. A classic racetrack, and a classic race. And this year was no exception – a gripping fight for the podium fought between ten eager drivers – Alonso and Massa of Ferrari, Button and Hamilton of McLaren, Webber and Vettel of Red Bull, Kubica and Petrov of Renault, and Rosberg and Schumacher of Mercedes, but don’t count out the Williams and Force Indias – in the right conditions, a podium would certainly be possible.

Unfortuanetly, Petrov was disappointing and Kubica could not emulate his previous podium at Belgium. The Mercedes improved on their qualifying, but Nico scraped a 5th place and Michael was not far in the points with 9th. Today was extemely disappointing for the Red Bulls – the first time this year without a front row quali and they only managed a meager 4th and 6th. Mclarens luck was mixed. Lewis crashed out in the first lap, losing his current championship lead, whereas Jenson got a red hot start, propelling him into the lead…Until Fernando Alonso nudged into his rear , damaging the diffuser and spoiler which McLaren say did cause Jenson to loose time, and the Frome flier spent the race on full defence of Alonso, until the pitstop, where Ferrari pipped him to the post, and Alonso took the lead, with Massa remianing in third. The story for Ferrari was a proud one – both drivers on the podium for their home race. However, the win has clouded over the events of the last week and months.

Of course, I am talking about the race fix scandal, and everyone has their own conspiracies and theories, so I want to get mine across!

It does seem suspicious that the head of the FIA was the president of Ferrari. He says he had no involvment with the conference, well he obviously had all to do with it regarding everything but the conference, otherwise why would he say that. Hes like the Rupert Murdoch of Motorsport – Rupert Murdoch may well not write the articles for all his newpapers, but you never see pictures of him staggering about, completely hammered at a party or on his way home from a party, infact you don’t see any pictures of him, because he own most of the newspapers, and becaus he has such authority, he can stop the articles he disapproves of going into print, without having to march up to the person who wrote the article, and pressing the delete button – Jean Todt is the same. His words were suspiciouly exact about what he didn’t get involved in – my feeling is that he was invovled – all the men in the conference work for him, they aren’t going to strip HIS team of their points this season!

And another thing – this gives every other team the right to cheat and only face a £65,000 fine (which is the equivalent to about a penny in the normal world). If Mclaren wanted to cheat, they could do it, loose £65,000 and potentially win the championship (of course, we know Mclaren won’t do this. They are simple an example. I’m actually thinking of a team with similar wealth, like to dress in read, and they employ a moody spanish git. Guess who). Any team could cheat, and they could do it multiple times. The rules CLEARLY STATE that team orders are against the rules, and it’s pretty damn obvious they were team orders – why the need to say sorry if they weren’t, and why did Felipe ‘understand’ and go slower for a short time whilst his teamate sped on off? Not team orders my arse – they were team orders and I know it, you know it, the fans, the other teams and Ferrari know it. Team orders. End of. Obviously the baised towards Ferrari came into play, and especially as it was the Italian GP coming up, the FIA couldn’t possibly tarnish Ferraris reputation like that.

Next year, team orders look set to comeback. Jenson Button has been very outspoken about them, saying he will quit within a year or two if they are reintroduced to the sport, and fellow Mclaren team mate, Lewis Hamilton, has  blasted them, saying he would rather loose the championship with no team orders, than win with them. Rubens Barrichello has also been very outspoken about the team orders scandal, slamming Ferrari for making fellow Brazilian, Felipe Massa, give up track position to Alonso. Nico Rosberg has also hinted that he is against the reintoduction of team orders in Formula One. Meanwhile BBC F1 pundit and former Team owner/boss, has very angrily protested against reintroduction of team orders.

Robert Kubica very much sits on the fence with this matter, stating that whatever way the rule goes, he is not fussed and that all he just simply wants clarification of the rules. The Spanish driver, Pedro De La Rosa has also stated he would just like clarificationof the rule, and is not hugely bothered whether they are introduced or not, although slightly favors its return.

Meanwhile, Lotus driver, Jarno Trulli has made clear his support for the reintroduction of the rule, as has seven time world champion, Michael Schumacher, who has been named the ‘pin up’ of the team orders era.  Fernando Alonso is a very blatant supporter of the rule, as well as both the Williams team and the Sauber team (although not necessarily their drivers!) showning support for the team orders ban being removed. Former f1 drivers, Nigel Mansell and David Coulthard also approving of its removal.

Where do I stand, well i’m with the first group (if I haven’t made it obvious by the title of the post). Team orders will banish good racing, not only between teams, but between drivers, and ultimately, every true F1 fan loves the gripping moment when teamate have a close, arse clenching battle for track position, and if that ends badly, thats good TV and great news. If it ends well, its good TV and great news. With team orders, it would be boring TV, and no news other than two words ‘team orders’, and that would be it for overtaking. In the top three teams this season, I feel all the drivers are well matched. Felipe was holding off Alonso at Hockenheim, so he was obviously good enough to put up a fight against him, and it is a very selfish thing to do if you would strip your driver of a win for the sake of another. Poor Felipe had a pretty shit year last year, in fact, he nearly died, so to come back to the race circuit after such a long break and horrific accident, and do that well is astounding, and surely it won’t help his confidence if he has to let his team mate pass him. In teams like McLaren and Red Bull, if they don’t put all their eggs in one basket, it will cost them the championship, but with two exceptional drivers in both teams, who do you pick? Hamilton has speed, bollocks and an unmatchable attack, like a charging bull, but he is also more prone to crashing out, whereas Jenson is very tatically skilled and more cautious yet is excellent at defending, but is prone to over caution, meaning he finishes out of the points more often. Lewis has crashed out three times, but has three wins, and seven total podiums, whereas Jenson has crashed out twice (once because of Vettel, once because of ignorance by one of the mechanics), but has only won twice and attained six podiums. Who the hell would you pick? You can’t possibly guess how the races would turn out, would Jenson use his oustanding tatical ability and succeed, or would you back the rampaging Hamilton with balls of steel? And in Red Bull, woudl you back potential te best F1 driver in history, Seb Vettel, or would you go for the suprise smash hit Webber? Even harder decision because although Webber is in the lead, and absolutely dominanting this season, you cannot deny Seb is one of the most able driver to have ever of existed, and he easily could pull it out of the bag at the end of the season. No doubt it would create blazing rows in teams like those, where backing one of two exactly matched drivers would surely kill the other inside. It really defeat the credibility of the team. If one driver had even a half a chance, you can’t deny them of it. Felipe could still win the championship, so don’t deny him if it  – as Murray Walker said ‘anything can happen in formula one, and it usually does’ (although strangely, Murray is against the ban on team orders). I WANT to see good, interesting inter team racing, and it would be so bad if we lost two great British drivers and a ledgendary British team because of the reintoduction of team orders.

I WOULD, however, possibly support a part re-introduction of the law – no team orders, unless one driver in your team is in contention for the championship and the other is not in anyway, or, if one driver is lapping several sececonds quicker than the other – at least two or three. In that intance, I could see the reasoning for it, but not otherwise.

One thing is for sure, Ferrari have really messed up F1, and certainly caused a huge rift between fans for each side – those supporting the ban, those against it, and those sitting on Kubicas fence.


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