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Team orders rule ties F1 in knots

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Andrew Benson | 17:16 UK time, Sunday, 25 July 2010

Fernando Alonso's victory in the German Grand Prix was the best possible result the race could have produced for the world championship battle.

It means the Spaniard, in a car that is now absolutely competitive after recent updates, has closed the gap on leader Lewis Hamilton and the prospect of a five-driver battle for the world title remains very much alive.

Of course, that point has become rather lost in the intense controversy about how Alonso secured the 23rd victory of his career.

The Spaniard was clearly handed first place on a plate by team-mate Felipe Massa on lap 49, the Brazilian slowing down out of the hairpin at Turn Six after his engineer Rob Smedley had told him on the radio: "Fernando is faster than you."

Ferrari have been fined $100,000 (£65,000) for a breach of article 39.1 of the F1 sporting regulations, which says: "Team orders which interfere with a race result are prohibited." The race stewards decided not to change the result but have referred the matter to the World Council of motorsport's governing body the FIA.

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Ferrari claimed after the race that they had not ordered Massa to let Alonso past, which strictly speaking is true, even if the whole watching world understood the subtext of Smedley's message as clearly as the Brazilian did.

Let's be clear about this: Smedley's message was a clear, coded instruction to Massa to let Alonso through and this was therefore clearly an example of team orders.

But that is where the situation gets a bit murkier.

Just because Ferrari effectively asked Massa to let Alonso win, was that necessarily the wrong thing to do? Is it right that the F1 rules ban team orders? Did Ferrari even technically break the rule?

There are so many difficult areas here.

First of all, technically, Ferrari did not order Massa to let Alonso win, not in so many words.

Secondly, what does the rule actually mean? Did what Ferrari did interfere with the race result? How can anyone possibly know? They could, if they wanted, argue that Alonso, who had been significantly faster than Massa all weekend, was going to get past eventually. Or that they didn't want to risk a collision between their two drivers by letting them race.

They didn't do that. Instead, they have been forced into what many will view as the ridiculous charade of having to dress it up as Massa's decision.

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Parallels will be drawn between this race and the notorious one in Austria in 2002, when then Ferrari boss (and now FIA president) Jean Todt ordered Rubens Barrichello to let Michael Schumacher past to win.

That day, despite repeated demands in the closing laps, Barrichello only ceded position on the run to the chequered flag. The resulting outcry - which started with Schumacher being booed on the podium and ended up with Ferrari being given a $1m fine - led to the rule banning team orders being introduced.

But I don't see it as the same situation. There was no need to deprive Barrichello of that win. Schumacher had dominated the start of the 2002 season and already had a significant championship lead at a race that came much earlier in the season than this one.

What happened in Hockenheim on Sunday was different. Alonso has been Ferrari's stronger driver all year and is clearly the only one who has a chance of the championship.

This - unlike the situation between the two Red Bull drivers at Silverstone - is not an example of two evenly matched drivers in one team battling it out for the title and the team making a call that potentially disadvantages one of them.

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Massa has simply not been strong enough this season compared to Alonso for anyone to make a case that he will be consistently beating him for the rest of the season, and by extension feature in the world championship battle.

As BBC F1 analyst Martin Brundle put it during the race, Alonso has had a tough couple of weekends, suffering badly at the hands of some stewards' decisions, and he needs as many points as he can get to haul himself back into the title chase.

Schumacher himself was very interesting on this subject after the race on Sunday.

"Watching the TV occasionally (on the big screens during the race), I've seen Felipe being in first position and I felt happy because he is a good friend of mine," he said. "Then hearing that Alonso won the race I was wondering what kind of strategy was that?

"I have been criticised in the past for exactly that and I have to say that I would do exactly the same if I was in their situation. At the end of the day, what are we here for? It's fighting for a championship and there is only one that can win it.

"By the end of the year, if you think you would have lost the championship for exactly that point you will ask yourself, all the fans, the television, the journalists, why didn't you do so?

"If you go back to other years, other teams and other situations, in the last race there were clear team orders and everybody accepts those. Whether it's the last race, second last race or even earlier, what's the point?

"I can see that in the years when we did it, because we were leading so much, that people thought it was unnecessary and I can agree on that one in a way.

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"But in principle I cannot. I agree with what's going on. You have to do it in a way that is nice and maybe not too obvious - make it nice fight. But there's only one target, and that's winning the championship."

It's worth pointing out that the previous version of this rule said "team orders that are against the interests of competition are forbidden".

Under that wording, you could even make the case that what Ferrari did was explicitly allowed, even encouraged, by the rules - in that letting Alonso win was absolutely in the interests of competition, ie in increasing the prospects of an interesting world championship fight.

That wording was changed because of its inherent vagueness, but there is a far wider point here - and that is whether the rule should be there in the first place.

Many people watching the German Grand Prix will doubtless be disgusted by what happened, and feel that they were deprived of seeing two men battle it out to the finish.

But the reality of F1 is as David Coulthard described it after the race on Sunday: "Every team in this pit lane gives team orders and anyone who says they don't is lying."

F1 is a team sport; teams constantly manipulate races. Having a rule banning team orders doesn't mean they don't happen, it simply means teams have to find duplicitous ways of employing them.

Equally, I don't see the logic of an argument that says Ferrari should be penalised for this incident but teams and drivers should not have been punished for similar situations in the past.

The most obvious recent one that springs to mind decided the result of the world championship in 2007.

In the final race of the season in Brazil, Massa was leading then-Ferrari team-mate Kimi Raikkonen, with Alonso - then at McLaren - in third place and the Spaniard's team-mate Hamilton fighting his way back up the field, eventually finishing fifth.

Had Massa won, Hamilton would have been world champion - but Massa, clearly under instruction from Ferrari, gave up a victory in his home race so his team-mate could win the title.

No one complained then. So why now?

Comments

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  • 1. At 5:46pm on 25 Jul 2010, 26sw905 wrote:

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

  • 2. At 5:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, mikeyoung55 wrote:

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

  • 3. At 5:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, Grunners wrote:

    Just goes to show, again, that most F1 races these days are decided in the garage and not on the track. How much longer can it carry on like that and still attract the fans and sponsors?

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  • 4. At 5:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, sagamix wrote:

    Bit dodgy if you ask me. Thought it was called motor racing.

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  • 5. At 5:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, Supervisor Number 5 wrote:

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

  • 6. At 5:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, mandy wrote:

    at the end of the day if alonso was faster than massa he should have raced him alonso is the first to complain about anything and everything ....alonsos lack off celebration shows even he was not happy to win like that.... he was not the better driver because he didnt race but as usuall ferrai can do what they want i want to see racing even against teams red bull have done it i watch it too see racing

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  • 7. At 5:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, addict wrote:

    Fernando Alonso has always criticised Michael Schumacher for his professional ethics. But after today's race, can Alonso say to himself that he is a true winner of German Grand prix. May be Ferrari forced to issue team order after his outbrust on radio "It is ridiculous". And how can Alonso defend the Ferrari action by sayting that it was in the interest of team. The true winner today is Massa and big loser is Ferrari as a team

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  • 8. At 6:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, Judgementman wrote:

    McClaren and Red Bull must copy Ferrari and start to favour one of their drivers (rather than taking points from each other) if they want to win the Champonship. If they want to play by the books then I am afraid they will not win the Champonship. DECISION TIME

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  • 9. At 6:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, Jason G wrote:

    Firstly, the Stewards document cites the offence as "Breach of the Article 39.1 of the FIA 2010 Sporting Regulations and of Article 151.c) of the 2010 FIA International Sporting Code." which are the Team Order prohibition and Bringing the Sport into Disrepute respectively. It's available online at [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]
    Secondly, what do Ferrari actually gain from this? Ferrari are a constructor, and thus have a Constructors Championship to fight. Switching their drivers did not affect the number of points the team got in the provisional result, and they obviously broke the rules to do so. Alonso and Massa are fighting their drivers championships, not the team. If Alonso couldn't get past Massa on the track, well that should be his problem. In favouring one driver, Ferrari have undermined the other, which can't help harmony within the team trying to catch up in the Constructors battle... [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

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  • 10. At 6:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, HackneyRed wrote:

    Andrew, your tacit acceptance of a team fixing the result of a race makes me wonder why you bother with the charade of calling F1 a sport. It's just commerce on wheels, not a competition.

    The FIA have set an appalling precedent in allowing the result to stand. It gives a green light to any other team in a similar position to fix the result. What a disgrace.

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  • 11. At 6:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, BlueNWhiteArmy wrote:

    Im not avid watcher of the sport but it's clear to me there is corruption deep within F1 still.

    I personally cant stand Alonso, he's the first to complain if anything seems suspicous so he really does need to practice what he preaches after this scandal.....

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  • 12. At 6:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, squelchuk wrote:

    The fact that the result stands is a farce. Ferrari have been fined $100,000 "for breaching Article 39.1 of the sporting regulations, which regulates against team orders, and Article 151 (c) of the 2010 FIA International Sporting Code, which relates to bringing the sport into disrepute" according to www.formula1.com

    So the stewards have found them the guilty of breaching 39.1, as is their right, so why haven't they been excluded from the race results?

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  • 13. At 6:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, Irish con wrote:

    The memory of the British person is so selective. Andrew how come no mention of heikki letting lewis past at turn 6 two years ago at turn 6 at this very same track. From mark Hughes autosport the following week his very words are " he was delayed further by exiting the pits behind kovalainen that Hamilton was faster ". This is no different to what happened here today and he also let him past at France that year and in china 08 kimi let massa past and nothing was sayed then so what's the difference then. If Ferrari get threw out of this race Hamilton should lose his championship also

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  • 14. At 6:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, AnyoneButAlonso wrote:

    We could argue till the cows come home about whether or not team orders should be allowed. Personally, I think they should, as this is a team sport.

    But the fact of the matter is that the rules state that team orders are not allowed. Ferrari blatantly gave Massa an order to let Alonso through, and it is clear they broke the rule by virtue of the fine handed to them. But that was too lenient: they should have been disqualified from the race.

    On the brighter side, I had good odds on a podium finish for Massa...

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  • 15. At 6:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, BounceTheThug wrote:

    It's the same old story with Alonso. If he can't get his own way he whinges like a spoilt teenager. It's pathetic. The thing I hated most was the way he stood on the top step and looked so pleased with himself. If you're faster, Fernando, overtake fairly, not with your teammate's help. Felipe should never have been put in that position.

    This whole thing stinks. I would have banned Ferrari for the next race.

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  • 16. At 6:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, davigrif wrote:

    So much fuss about this... what about McLaren's "piece of information" to JB to save fuel, or even worse, Vettel's attempt to drive Alonso into the wall at the start?

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  • 17. At 6:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, Paul Lucas wrote:

    Some fair points Andrew, well written.

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  • 18. At 6:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, TreezaGreen wrote:

    What I find more interesting than the obvious 'team orders' issue is why Alonso feels the need to win by not overtaking? I mean the the guy didnt even try, he may well have been faster at that stage of the race but he wasnt earlier on and we are talking a couple of tenths seperating the two, it seemed fair to me that over the whole race Massa was the faster and had done enough to deserve the win (including getting the better of his team mate at the start - does that no longer mean anything, that a driver should risk everything at potentially the most dangerous part of the race all for nought?)
    The FIA need to make it super clear this time around OR simply do away with the regulation all together and we can have a free for all. The FIA also need to clearly stipulate that ANY driver seeking to obtain a contract that will give him preferential treatment over a team mate in a racing situation should also be illegal or deemed unsporting. If you ban team orders then surely it must be unsporting for a driver to be able to seek contractual advantage before the cars even hit the track.
    Clearly this is a bit of a minefield but it shows that teams no longer trust team mates to be able to race correctly without the risk of causing problems which may lead to the team losing out.

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  • 19. At 6:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, matt1969james wrote:

    What a joke, once again Ferrari show there utter indifference to the rules £100,000 fine to the richest team, They will be laughing all the way home! If this would have been any other team they would have been disqulifed.

    A VERY sad day for F1

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  • 20. At 6:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, *sglenister wrote:

    What has been proven today is that the rules are there, yes, but you can pay your way round them.

    Alonso has an enormous PR problem and he will find, just like Schumacher, this isn't going to help him one bit. It's all good for F1 because it will get lots of press inches.

    To here Christian Horner complainging...well...pot...kettle...

    Red Bull shot themselves in the foot last time out, now it's Ferrari's turn. Thank God for McLaren.

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  • 21. At 6:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, Jason G wrote:

    The moderator has removed my link above; I won't repost it but it's to the stewards report on the Official FIA website. Just so it makes sense.

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  • 22. At 6:06pm on 25 Jul 2010, NandoWolf wrote:

    No mention anywhere on 606 about McLaren telling Heikki to let Lewis past in Hockenheim 2 years ago. I wonder why? Because a British driver won.

    Yes what happened today was wrong and even as an Alonso fan I sat watching the final part of the race very disappointed.

    However, if McLaren got away with it then, why should Ferrari be punished now?

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  • 23. At 6:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, Kev wrote:

    What happens if you put a bet on Massa to win, could you sue ferrari for loss of winnings, you didnt bet on the team ti win you net on Massa, what happened was race fixing, plain and simple

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  • 24. At 6:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, ThatChumpStain wrote:

    sagamix wrote:

    Bit dodgy if you ask me. Thought it was called motor *racing*.

    Agreed, I didn't believe the sport was about simply driving about in an F1 car, you're supposed to race. The fact that Alonso was faster is a moot point, plenty of expert races have been won through tremendous tactical driving to keep a faster car behind you. The release of the message was wholly unnecessary and designed to tell Felipe only one thing: that Fernando is to overtake you. The Prancing Horse has demonstrated many times over the years that it's been, at times, a Prattling Joke and this is one of these. My sincerest hope is that the lying "word" of Ferrari is not taken and that they are hit severely with a punishment more suited to a team fixing this race result.

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  • 25. At 6:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tom wrote:

    Alonso said in Valencia that he felt the race had been "Manipulated". Wounder what he thinks of this race then...

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  • 26. At 6:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, matthewbcfcwilkinson wrote:

    ferrari would have got the 1-2 anyway, they said that vettel was closing alonso down and if he'd past him it would have ruined their race, so they swith alonso and massa, if vettel had passed massa would it have ruined their race then when they were after a 1-2? in the word of alonso in 2006 " i no longer consider f1 a sport"

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  • 27. At 6:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, trevor4491 wrote:

    If Schumacher would have done the same thing, is any further proof needed that it was the wrong thing to do?
    I've been growing more and more disenchanted with F1 and this is the last straw for me. I won't be watching any more "races".

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  • 28. At 6:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, AndItsGoGoGo wrote:

    Good article Andrew. I'm broadly in agreement with yourself and DC and was quite surprised to learn that Ferrari have been fined and referred to the WMSC. (And I say that as someone who would have loved to have seen Massa win today.)

    On the referral, bringing the sport into disrepute can lead to some very serious sanctions. Could we have an article or further information on what will happen next, when in might happen and what sanctions the WMSC could impose?

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  • 29. At 6:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, andiM wrote:

    The fine is insufficient punishment, there needed to be an accompanying points penalty. They should reduce Alonso's points to a second place finish. This would mean that Ferrari would be suitably punished for fixing the car positions as they would lose points in the constructors championship and Alonso would receive the points he would have gained without interference. Massa should also only receive 2nd place points for his complicity. I think ferrari would quite happily paid 100 000 and still made the same decision if they had known this would be the penalty.

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  • 30. At 6:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, downforce wrote:

    A fine!, what a joke, one if the richest teams in the sport gets fined pocket change for manipulating the result of an international F1 race, in full view of the Hockenheim race fans and within full hearing and vision of the miilions of TV fans.

    This was never about money but about racing integrity and the image of the sport. The outcome should have been determined by loss of points or demotion back down the field.

    As other commentators have stated if Alonso's pace was so quick why didn't he race and overtake Phillipe, still a Ferrari one two finish.

    A disgraceful finish within an increasingly cynical season, Bernie you are presiding over a rotten borough, get together with Jean Todt before F1 becomes the pariah rather than the pinnacle of motorsport.

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  • 31. At 6:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, Zappa wrote:

    I can't believe that Schumacher watches the big screen TV's while racing!

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  • 32. At 6:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, Bungieware wrote:

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

  • 33. At 6:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, 355simon wrote:

    Very very wrong . This stinks . The inference here is that just because Alonso has ( in his world ) had some bad luck / judgements against him he should be let off any penalties . How much more blatant do a team have to be ? , And the pathetic fine ! , How much does that equate for each of the Ferrari personnel that the stewards think that blatantly( allegedly ) lied ? ! . Yet another sad sad day for the sport i love ..

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  • 34. At 6:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, capricornvladimir wrote:

    A slower driver should allow the faster one drive ahead without the need of being told so. Massa is always the slower one, there is no need for him to feel hurt. That is a fact. As for FIA's decision: There are too many rules as it is, and FIA is NO GOOD for F1. Period.

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  • 35. At 6:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stanley Windrush wrote:

    So, Ferrari favouritism is still alive and kicking. It gives the lie to the old claim that teams are only fighting for the constructors' title.
    The stewards got the decision right at the end. It would have been even more unfair to Massa if he had been robbed of a second place points finish as well.

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  • 36. At 6:16pm on 25 Jul 2010, JMH wrote:

    Look at the bright side - at least no-one had to crash this time in order for Alonso to win. Does the man just have absolutely no morals? More proof that he can't deal with having a quick team-mate. Shove him off to Hispania or Virgin and see how he does there.
    Imagine the uproar if McLaren had used team orders today (I know they did a few years ago, but everyone is out to get Hamilton these days)

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  • 37. At 6:17pm on 25 Jul 2010, nigelscissorhands wrote:

    Andrew dear boy.You asked the question , no one complained 3 years ago when Massa moved over for Kimi.Then it was clear to the whole world that if Kimi was 2nd, and Massa 1st ,with Hamilton out of the running , then Massa would move over in order for Kimi to win the title.This I believe was a pre-meditated agreement between Kimi and Fellipe and not construed as a 'team order'.Fellipe needed no coded order to make way for Kimi.He would have simply known Hamiltons position, so he helped Kimi that day...It was obvious.Today however was diferant , we are only half way through the year and it was blatently Ferrari telling Massa to give up a deserved win , because Ferrari wanted Alonso to win , who could'nt pass fairly and had to complain to the team,Massa was'nt in on this but he knew thats what the team wanted,you can tell he was gutted,, as It was so blatent.Shame on Ferrari and shame on Alonso.

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  • 38. At 6:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, AJ wrote:

    One rule for Ferrari.... Hamilton lied about overtaking whilst the safety car was out last season and it was a scandal. I'm sure if asked the question the Ferrari team would do the same only to be undone by the team radio chatter. Or, the FIA should just ask Massa, he was ready to tell the truth in the post-race interview. Alonso moaned during the last race it was "unfair" that Hamilton kept second place after a drive-thru... Well, this was unfair on Massa. I hope they are both stripped of their points, and the all powerful Ferrari are told to behave. It's disgraceful.

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  • 39. At 6:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, fly-boy wrote:

    Ferrari CHEATED - OFFICIAL.
    The Stewards decision is below. They have therefore concluded that Ferrari CHEATED:
    "The Stewards document cites the offence as "Breach of the Article 39.1 of the FIA 2010 Sporting Regulations and of Article 151.c) of the 2010 FIA International Sporting Code." which are the Team Order prohibition and Bringing the Sport into Disrepute respectively."
    Ferrari CHEATED - OFFICIAL

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  • 40. At 6:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, Thorsson wrote:

    Yet another bunch of responses where people's prejudices are clearly on show. This was very unsubtle, but most of the teams have made team decisions favouring one driver. Inherently what's the difference between this and giving Weber's wing to Vettel? Nothing!

    Alonso did not look happy or smug on the top step. He looked sheepish and ashamed. Who just came top (easily) of the *driver's* poll about who's the best current driver? Alonso. He may not have a magic personality, but none of these guys have small egos, and they all want that World Championship more than anything else. Some have just been coached to dissemble better than others.

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  • 41. At 6:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, simmobb2 wrote:

    A sad day for F1, Fernando Alonso and Ferrari. They can dress it up how they like but that is not what people pay to see. Shame on the lot of them I say!

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  • 42. At 6:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, India Bravo wrote:

    All the time that F1 has both a Drivers Championship and a Constructors Championship running in parallel, then conflicts of interest such as this will occur. DC likened the situation to the players of a football team. If this is how we are supposed to view F1 then all reference to the Drivers Championship must be dropped, so that it is clearly viewed as a team sport only.
    As Massa was the one who 'decided' to fix the result, he should be the one who gets the penalty. That way it might stop other drivers from following team orders in future.

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  • 43. At 6:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, Absurdity101 wrote:

    The race today was an extremely poor advert for F1. Not only was the racing pretty dull the obvious breach of the rules left a very bitter taste in the mouth. Those who say it is a team sport, it happens all the time, look at the other instances of it happening etc etc yadda yadda miss the point that this sport wouldn't exist in anything like this form if it weren't for the fans. The fans want to watch RACING, which is not what we saw today. The Schumacher Barrichello thing showed how much fans are turned off by this behaviour, today was a clear example of the same. A very bad day for F1.

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  • 44. At 6:20pm on 25 Jul 2010, Predictable Bob wrote:

    It's supposed to be motor RACING - if Alonso didn't have the power or skill to pass then he didn't deserve to win !

    I sincerely hope that the FIA show some backbone and hammer Ferrari (and not by giving them a fine) the best way to stamp out this sort of thing would be a massive points deduction. Personally I won't be bothering with F1 any more if they get away with a trivial fine

    On the other hand if teams were only allowed to have one car in the race ...

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  • 45. At 6:20pm on 25 Jul 2010, fly-boy wrote:

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

  • 46. At 6:21pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    Congratulations Fernando and Ferrari on a great race with great performance and making the right choice to swap drivers for the championship. it is only a shame people with little F1 knowledge or mclaren fans as i like to call them are still so sore from being given sound thrashing in the race they feel the need to complain about team orders something there team has done time and time again ( hold position is as much a team order as anything else )

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  • 47. At 6:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, Drooper_ wrote:

    #13, Irish con, "The memory of the British person is so selective." So we all have selective memories, and of course you don't. You may have a valid point, but why couldn't you just have said "Andrew..." or "Some of the posters on here..."? Can't you just give it a rest sometimes?

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  • 48. At 6:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, David Windsor wrote:

    An absolute disgrace. Ferrari and Alonso have decided to disregard the clear rules of the sport and have deprived the viewing public of a fair race, which they have evry right to expect. This can't do the sport any good, and its just a pity that the officials couldn't find the courage to apply an appropriate penalty.

    Can there be any Ferrari or Alonso fans left after this? It would have been refreshing had Alonso slowed on the last lap to reinstate the correct placings. I wasn't holding my breath though.



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  • 49. At 6:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, FormulaOneFan wrote:

    It's unbelievable. Half way through the season and Ferrari have already decided who they want to win the world championship. Now we can never really tell if Fernando Alonso has been beating Fellipe Massa on merit.

    I think Ferrari favoured Alonso from the start and have been giving Massa bad cars.

    Fernando constantly complained over the radio about it. If he is faster then why not show his race craft and beat him on the track?

    I cannot accept this result at all.

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  • 50. At 6:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tee-J76 wrote:

    What I don't understand is IF Alonso was that much faster than Massa why he couldn't overtake him legitimately? Or at the very least why Massa had to be told that Alonso was faster even though he wasn't actually pressuring him?

    Once again Alonso goes down in my esteem. He does have immense talent don't get me wrong but if he focused himself rather than throwing his toys out of the pram when things don't go his way he would have blazed past Massa and earned the win today rather than having it given to him.

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  • 51. At 6:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dilbert wrote:

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

  • 52. At 6:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, tazman62 wrote:

    How typical of F1 admin to gloss over Ferrari's flouting of the rules!! No-one should be in any doubt of F1 Admin's bias towards Ferrari. If this blatant breach of team order rules had been committed by another team such as McLaren, they would have been stripped of the win, drivers & constructors points as well as a VERY hefty fine and called before the FIA council to answer for their blatant disregard!!!
    I think it's about time Ferrari were brought into line (VERY SHARPLY) with the rest of the F1 teams!!

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  • 53. At 6:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, Charlie Whiskey wrote:

    What disturbs me most about the post-race washup on the BBC red button, and this blog, is the obvious contempt that Martin and DC have for the fans who largely fund the TV income and hence so much of the F1 industry. Well done Eddie for sticking up to the people who really matter.

    If Martin's and DC's cynical support for a team-only "sport" is taken at face value, why then all the discussion in the transmissions about individual drivers? Methinks these two, hitherto so sensible and even-handed, have now blotted their copybook with the viewers and shown where their true loyalty lies - with the circus that feeds their bank balances,and not the audience.

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  • 54. At 6:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, Rasher wrote:

    'F1 is a team sport; teams constantly manipulate races. Having a rule banning team orders doesn't mean they don't happen, it simply means teams have to find duplicitous ways of employing them.'

    Fair enough. F1 is a business and there is any amount of dodgy dealing. The problem here is the blatant disregard for the rules followed by the laughable attempts to explain the situation away. Yes, races are manipulated by teams, but today was such a huge series of whoppers one after the other that the whole F1 business is brought into disrepute.

    Cite as many examples as you want about previous incidents, but times change, attitudes change and F1 changes too. Make no mistake: F1 is run as a business nowadays and anything that taints the F1 brand is going to get squashed.

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  • 55. At 6:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, Charlie Whiskey wrote:

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  • 56. At 6:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, hankh wrote:

    Simply Alonso is ruining F1 He thinks he and Ferrari can get away with anything He should have been given
    a drive through straight away So a few pounds - they will do it again and again When will the bosses get
    some teeth Ferrari will never leave - they need F1 If Alonso wins the championship myself and 126 others
    will not bother to watch next year Ferrari or others will connive and cheat to win

    It is simple break a rule during the race and you must complete a drive through - simple isn't it

    And tell Brundle to stop feeling sorry for Alonso, or join Ferrari

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  • 57. At 6:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, Thom wrote:

    On the contrary, I beg to differ - myself and many people complained at the result of 2007. Races should be won on the track, not in the pit lane.

    I think we should really be looking closer at the role Formula 1's sanctioning body handle this issue. The FIA is the most corrupt sporting organisation I have ever seen. If this were to have happened to any other team, there would be no doubt as to the outcome of this blatant disregard of the rules. Though it's hardly surprising when you realise that half of the FIA is ex-Ferarri.

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  • 58. At 6:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, jankop wrote:

    Regardless of whether you think the rules on team orders is correct or not, what if i was a betting man and had put good money on Massa to win. Could i now take Ferrari to court for fraud?

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  • 59. At 6:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, Steve Kilvington wrote:

    If F1 is to retain any credibility then the drivers have to be allowed to race. I feel sorry for Massa and Smedley that they have to be part of this charade and disappointed that Ferrari think the world stupid enough to believe their poorly concealed lies.
    DC is off the mark and whilst I normally respect his driver's perspective, this is not his area of expertise; the fans have a right to be frustrated - they are what F1 is there for - its a viewing spectacle, not a way to pay the drivers' champagne lifestyle.
    The fans lost out today and in particular those who had bet on Massa to win - no doubt Ferrari will be refunding everyone's stakes?

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  • 60. At 6:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, Highlander wrote:

    Let's hope the WMSC come down as hard as they did on McLaren in 2007.

    I think a $100 million fine and DSQ from the WCC should just about do it.

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  • 61. At 6:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, sandeep bhatia wrote:

    OK, bottom line is this. I sat there watching a race unfold, expecting to see Alonso try to get past Massa, perhaps bringing Vettel into the equation, possibly not, but it would have been genuinely exciting. That natural course of events was tampered with, and i felt i had wasted my afternoon. It is motor racing, not motorised team-manoeuvring. One is exciting, one is not.

    I have never thought of F1 as a sport, but dont mind watching it of a sunday afternoon. This plays straight into the hands of those who argue it is not a sport. Sure there is a bit of favouring going on behind the scenes, but come race day, i'd like to see a race, not asking too much.

    Of course one can understand why Ferrari acted so, but i am not convinced every team would have done same, and understanding doesn't make it right. I understand what Thierry Henry did against Ireland - apologising for this afternoons debacle is for the die hard fan or the deluded.

    Very very poor.

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  • 62. At 6:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Ferrari very technically did nothing wrong because they covered themselves so much so in terms of evidence for wording of radio messages. But the tone of the messages - the way they were said - gave enough evidence and the just sheer awfulness of the way the pass took place was also too dubious. I mean, all Massa had to do was outbrake himself somewhere or get 'stuck' behind one of the close backmarkers and it would have been seen as a racing incident rather than team orders. But it wasn't enough clear cut evidence to disqualify Ferrari and take an immediate decision i.e. ban the team from competing in the next race.

    So a fine and further decision by the WMSC is the right thing. I wouldn't be surprised if ferrari don't get thrown out of the constructors championship and that there are further fines, because it's a team decision and one which should not harm the drivers. That's why the result stood also.

    Of course team orders go on, they are just coded or done so subtlety, or even without the driver knowing - for example a compromised pit stop strategy compared to the other driver. Everyone knows they go on and it always has done. I have mixed feelings on whether or not the rule should be changed or removed.

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  • 63. At 6:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, DC 13 wrote:

    Poor showing from the reds today!!
    Felipe took the lead at the start and was more than a match for alonso all the way! So what if he struggled on the prime tyre and lost time to alonso?? If alonso was quicker it was up to him to get past felipe using the skill you would think a double world champion should have!!
    The worst part of it was ferrari who obviously believe we are stupid! Alonso said he overtook because he saw felipe going slow and didn't know what was happening and then felipe tried to convince everyone that he made the decision. They were clearly spoonfed what to tell the media and the half-attempt by stefano to get a group photo on the podium was just embarassing!! 8 races to go and they are already rubbishing felipe and backing fernando?? Ferrari hang your head in shame!!!

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  • 64. At 6:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, Scuderiafarr wrote:

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

  • 65. At 6:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Sorry, just to clarify in my post #62, i would not be surprised if Ferrari did get excluded from the constructors championship.

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  • 66. At 6:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, JN wrote:

    Very odd article from a F1 expert.

    The comparison with the final race in Brazil in Brazil surely does not apply. In that race Massa was no longer in contention for the title, thus one can argue that he would let his team mate through irrespective of any team order. Thus, in that case, the argument that it was Massa's decision to let Kimi go and not a team order will be very hard to challenge.

    In today's case, it was clearly not a driver decision but a team order, as clearly Massa wanted to win the race), as such in breach of the FIA rules. If one follows your rationle, why not declare Alonso as the world champion and we all stop wasting our time watching TV or following F1.

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  • 67. At 6:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, f1racefan wrote:

    if i were a betting man which i am not and had put money on massa winning then how would i be feeling right now!
    not team orders what a load of rubbish.
    if this was horse racing and someone had pulled a horse up to let another pass it there would be outrage and bans etc.
    the fia and the stewards saw and heared what we all did watching that race and it was team orders.....lets see something done about it this is about racing not a game of team orders and christian slater was right to say if we can all do this then we could of told mark webber to pull over and let sebastian through four weeks ago.
    lets see justice done before this becomes the norm in f1

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  • 68. At 6:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, SupaSix-1 wrote:

    Andrew,

    I just cant get over the hypocrisy. And also I cant ignore and get over the complete double standards by you, MB & DC by trying to justify the breach. I understand why Ferrari did what they did but they broke the rules.

    The bottom line is.....Ferrari clearly BROKE THE RULES - end off!!

    - Whatever the reason is, is not the point! Yes I know team orders are always there, and will always be...but the fact of the matter is that Ferrari once again showed complete disregard & disrespect for the rules & chose to breach them. Also it is too soon to count felippe out of the championship yet, mathimatically he still has a chance and anything can happen in the remainder of the races.

    I just cant get over you people slating Micahel Schumacher endlessly and continue to do 8 years later and you scathe him directly for a decision made by his team principle, Michael didnt make that decision...and most importantly...at the time....FERRARI & MICHAEL DIDNT BREAK ANY RULES!!!
    Yes it was not appropriate but no rules were broken.

    Its unbelievable that after all the condemnation of 'team orders' throughout this season and in the past years....some of the beeb team and others will think of defending or justifying this travesty. If it wasnt against the RULES then so be it.


    The doubles standards are unprofessional and down right dirty.
    -Ferrari, Alonso & those justifying a rule break are being totally unprofessional.
    Its absolutely disgusting!



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  • 69. At 6:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, AvroChris wrote:

    I don't think Alonso was too happy with his victory, given his face on the podium...Vettel was the happiest of the three! And while the $100,000 penalty seems remarkably small, I'm glad Felipe Massa gets to keep his points for the race. He certainly earned them!

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  • 70. At 6:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, Thom wrote:

    @ Scuderiafarr
    He does moan a lot though.
    And it's annoying.

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  • 71. At 6:31pm on 25 Jul 2010, Andy wrote:

    I think the penalty is clever, it is small but we don't want to bring down the entire F1 season into disrepute, if ferrari accept and pay the fine then clearly if they do it again it there will be bigger consequences,

    I think it was wrong today, for the followers of the sport, if he is faster then he can overtake, simple, if he cannot overtake after at least trying a few times then maybe let him past - but Massa would (let him pass) if Alanso was persistant for the team;

    Alonso had a poor start and it didn't work out for him - unlucky - if everytime he thorws his dummys out of his pram because he is behind someone then he should be left to earn his wages and do something about it on the track - not call his boss on the radio and moan - he is pathetic,

    Any good luck Massa, I hope you do well and get in front of your so called team mate in every race! but I still want Button to win the title :-)

    Andy

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  • 72. At 6:31pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ninja Hedgehog wrote:

    Think it is bad that the stewards were only interested in this after the race when the press and fans started to ask awkward questions.

    Also $100K is not a lot of money to a team like Ferrari, if the stewards would have wanted to give a real penalty to the team they could have taken away the Team points for this race, or left the result the same but deducted Alonso the 7 extra points that this move gave him (not imposed a fine of about the same value as 1 Ferrari road car).

    However, good to see that the matter will be referred to the FIA's World Motor Sport Council for further consideration, where heavier sanctions could be imposed.

    Would like to see a grid drop for Alonso at the next race.

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  • 73. At 6:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    Couldent agree with you more scuderiafarr

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  • 74. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, sparky856 wrote:

    Its getting a bit tedious hearing Alonso whine everytime things are noy going his way.

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  • 75. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, Whiteowl wrote:

    ITS DISGUSTING .... MEANT TO BE A RACE WHERE U TRY AND WIN...THIS IS NOW A CHAMPIONSHIP WHERE CARS JUST GO ROUND AND ROUND.. BOOOORING !!!... ALSO WHATS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN THE PLANNED CRASH AND TODAYS CARRY ON?? ITS THE SAME SITUATION EXCEPT THERE WASNT A CRASH...60,000 FINE?? BY THE TIME I FINNISH THIS POST ALONSO WOULD OF MADE THAT AMOUNT IN INTEREST AT HIS LOCAL BANK..THE TEAM SHOULD BE BANNED FOR A RACE...WONT BE WATCHING ANYMORE DISGUSTING!!

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  • 76. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, tunes666 wrote:

    I like it how everyone is happy to talk about rules and respect and are happy to smear the fact that Ferrari cleaned up today while looking good for for the rest of the season...

    But of course totally ignoring the fact that Hamilton clearly Cheated a couple weeks ago when blatantly over taking the safety car which was very clearly avoidable. Then being given a measly drive through penalty which had no effect on the outcome due to Hamilton taking full advantage of his gain, allowing the illegal move to give him a bigger point gap over Alonso..

    Yet when Ferrari get just a fine for another twist of rules, its out outrageous? and the punishment is not great enough? .. I smell double standards.

    Had the Stewards used common sense to accuse Ferrari and change the result outcome... it would raise questions to the evidence they had that this race outcome was changed, when they did not do so When Hamilton benefited from his own dirty move a couple races ago... which lead to the rules actually being amended!

    I think Its very telling how McLaren and Lewis have been very tight lipped on this matter seeing as their grasp on the rules over the last few seasons has been nothing to exactly brag about...

    Alonso Deserved to win today and was faster than Massa all weekend and had a good chance of getting in front of him anyway... Massa only got to first spot because Vettel was more worried about Alonso, why?.. because he is more of a threat.

    I like and rate Massa but he has under achieved all year and put him self in that position, not Ferrari. And If people think Ferrari are the only ones who favour a driver or apply the odd team order of this nature then you need to take a rain check.






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  • 77. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    Alonso should be a politician.Everybody heard that it was team orders, people are not stupid. The fine is wholly inappropriate and not a deterrent to stop this happening in future.
    I mean what happened if you had bet on Massa to win? The whole thing stinks. At the end of the day the teams only priority should be to secure the constructors championship.

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  • 78. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, pragmaticaldo wrote:

    Most of the comments above ignore much of what's said in Andrew's blog.
    Are the complainers really saying Alonso's victory today was NOT the best possible result for the world championship battle? That the result was a good reason for enthusiasts to abandon F1?

    Or is it the fear of an Alonso/Ferrari championship that's to blame for the sudden outburst of virtuous indignation?


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  • 79. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, JB wrote:

    Didn't FA complain about the race being manipulated a few weeks ago. I am sure that we won't hear any similiar complaints from him - double standards on his part.

    He has is now the beneficary of two manipulated races i.e. crashgate and this weekend - and he obviously claims he knows nothing about the manipulation.

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  • 80. At 6:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, matthewbcfcwilkinson wrote:

    #46."it is only a shame people with little F1 knowledge or mclaren fans as i like to call them are still so sore from being given sound thrashing in the race they feel the need to complain about team orders something there team has done time and time again"

    im a big ferrari fan and an even bigger schumacher fan and have watched the sport since i was 4 and even i am disgusted with the way ferrari have acted today just as i was in 2002.today it was against the rules clearly or they wouldnt have fined them, im sure 90% of people here have a great knowledge of f1, you really think this is a great advertisment for our "sport"?

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  • 81. At 6:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sn4ke wrote:

    Totally disagree with Andrew Bensons blog about letting team orders come back.

    Their are 2 championships in F1, the Teams and the Drivers.....

    Several people on the BBC team seem to be saying ''well its ok really, it was for the teams benefit''....how?
    Ferrari still have the same number of points had they not swapped the drivers, it has not benefited Ferrari's championship at all!

    Had Massa swapped to increase Ferrari's championship chances then it would have been different, he is after all paid by them to do a job and the team should come 1st.

    But he did not, it was simply to let another man drive past and take 1st place and increase HIS personnel championship chances, and this is just wrong, F1 is 1st and foremost Racing, the best man on the day should take the 1st place, match fixing of any sort is not sporting.

    If i am reading Andrew Bog correctly and some people would want F1 let Team orders back in officially, then fine, but then the drivers championship should be removed and just the Team championship should remain, as that would be the only truly competitive championship in the Sport as the Drivers is simply engineered.



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  • 82. At 6:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    If you place abet on a driver to win..that is your problem, how ridiculous to think you can sue.

    As for the rest of you, you are completely way out and really do forget what happens in previous races and how much other teams get away with things. For goodness sake..why don´t you just get off Ferrari´s case ...moan...moan.moan..moan...moan, Alonso has been the quickest all weekend and is way ahead of massa...so it was thr right move to make...there is nothing wrong with Alonso he loves what he does and is a passionate racing driver....i suppose hamilton is god???? i think not

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  • 83. At 6:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Steve Kilvington wrote:

    Scuderiafarr - I think McLaren are wrong to stop drivers racing - but I'm not sure that's what happened; besides, the key difference with Hamilton and Button was that their positions did not change, they were encouraged not to challenge each other at that point in the race; the positions they'd worked hard to get. Today was different on account of them being forced to change places AND then continuing to lie, when it is so obvious what happened.

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  • 84. At 6:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, mcstav wrote:

    Pathetic. This makes an absolute joke out of what has been a great, hard fought season so far. Proven beyond any doubt that Alonso won't fight it out fair and square with a team mate. It happened when at McLaren and now at Ferrari.

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  • 85. At 6:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, Richard wrote:

    Why all this debate? The rules were changed in 2002 to prohibit orders from the pits telling one driver to move over for another. Ferrari broke the rules. Andrew, it's not a grey area, it's rather that you're not happy with the rule. The rule was broken. The only debate is the degree of punishment.

    As it's so hard to enforce, perhaps the rule should be repealed and the public simply boo the podium when they know it's happened.

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  • 86. At 6:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sentinelbrit wrote:

    I have said it before and I say it again, F1 is one of the most dishonest sports out there. The sport has a record of inconsistency in rulings, outright lying and fixing results. Your view that the result makes the championship much more interesting, that the law is open to interpretation and it has happened in the past just goes to show how people connected to F1 are as misguided as the authorities. The point is that what they did and everyone knows this was against the laws of the sport and Ferrari has the gall to openly lie to the authorities and us. You guys will do anything to keep people watching F1. Why would I spend over an hour watching a sport where in the final stages the result can be changed not through drivers skill but team orders. The sport is rotten.

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  • 87. At 6:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, MustGetOutMore wrote:

    Its a muti million pound industry which generates vast amounts of capital through sponsorship. Sponsors only want to chuck money at the sport due to the vast worldwide audience that follow the sport. This is an audience that seem to be universally annoyed by this move from Ferrari.

    It appears that the teams and pundits need to modernize a touch as I dont think you can compare todays F1 with that of 50 years ago. It is far wealthier and with a far more eductaed audience (in terms of motor sport). People want to see racing, and in the end the fastest man and team will win.

    P.S If it had been Hamilton he probably would have passed Massa without the need of interference from the pit wall.

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  • 88. At 6:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, bromers1979 wrote:

    Good article outlining all the issues. The main problems for me are:

    1) Massa clearly wasn't happy about it
    2) Alonso seemed to believe he was the correct winner
    3) It has happened so early/middle of the the season
    4) All the lies - if they were more honest and gracious towards Massa then they would get a lot more sympathy and understanding

    I understand and agree with why they did it but think the whole thing could have been handled better.

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  • 89. At 6:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, *jollysilverking wrote:

    "Fernando Alonso's victory in the German Grand Prix was the best possible result the race could have produced for the world championship battle."

    Best result for the World Championship battle(s) would have been an honest result. This result can only lead to a tainting of the world championships should they go Ferrari's way.

    "Alonso has been Ferrari's stronger driver all year and is clearly the only one who has a chance of the championship"

    Alonso is with Ferrari team orders. Alonso wasn't the strongest driver at the start of today's race was he? If Massa had been allowed to win today with Alonso 2nd he would only have been 24 points adrift of Alonso, which to put into perspective would be less than 10 points under the old system. I.e a difference of one race win and one no score. Today was round 11 of 19 races,with a further 200 points up for grabs in the WDC and that's far to early in the season to be singling drivers out for assisted number 1 status.

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  • 90. At 6:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

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

  • 91. At 6:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, tracy Whitehead wrote:

    cant believe they can be fined so muc,h yet the result still stands, team orders are not allowed yet that was blatant. Massa was gutted and rightfully so how come ferrari get away with it time after time

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  • 92. At 6:39pm on 25 Jul 2010, Thom wrote:

    The way I see it, this is like diving in football. Simulation is against the rules, there's no arguing that, but players still try to get away with it. And they often do. However, if they get caught, (beyond any reasonable doubt) they will be punished for it.

    How is this any different?

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  • 93. At 6:39pm on 25 Jul 2010, mark wrote:

    i think perhaps the people who run F1 forget that actually the ordinary watcher wants to see a race.. I don't care if Massa or Alonso crashed whilst racing each other, thats what its all about in my view. A sanitised and controlled race is really not what we want to see !!!

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  • 94. At 6:40pm on 25 Jul 2010, Starky wrote:

    $100,000 fine? Ridiculous the car that was on the grid probably cost more than that. The FIA should be ashamed after that excuse of a punishment. This ruined what could of been a really good grand prix. I'm totally in agreement with Eddie Jordan, whatever Ferrari may say those were team orders. End of

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  • 95. At 6:40pm on 25 Jul 2010, Vladimir Melo wrote:

    I think it´s not about what´s right or wrong, but it´s about Ferrari. Remember, we have watched Hamilton x Button, Webber x Vettel and these fights were amazing, as we all used to see when Prost, Piquet, Mansell and Senna were still driving.
    If you think this kind of situation should go on, we´re gonna have a kind of another classification, not a race. And more, we cannot see anymore a fight between the same team drivers?
    Sorry, but this is not the F1 I wanna watch.

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  • 96. At 6:41pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Frankly, I can see why everyone is annoyed, and I am too. Felipe deserved to win, but in context for the rest of the season, it was best for Fernando to. 5 driver shoot-out = exciting.

    I think everyone is more annoyed at the way it all happened today.

    Ferrari only partly broke the rules, because of the way it all transpired.

    They only had to be more covert and for Felipe to know his place (frankly for the championship he's out of it) and I'm sure it would have been different if it was roles reversed.

    So Ferrari did the right thing but didn't do it correctly.

    Thus leading to the furore, the investigations and the fine.

    I don't care if it deprives of one race result where an exciting finish may not have been guaranteed if the result helps to set up an exciting rest of the season.

    If you guys were real F1 fans you'd give it a rest and let it go now. Yes it was controversial but everything in F1 is and get used to it. Look at the bigger picture.

    So it was right, but wrong. Therefore Ferrari look like idiots. End of.
    And any punishment should be on the team and not the drivers. So a fine and a strong punishment from the WMSC - for example expelling the team from the Constructors championship - would be satisfactory, but any other action would upset the intriguing drivers championship which we now face.

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  • 97. At 6:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, toysOutThePram wrote:

    If Alonso had to fight with Massa they would have been preocuppied with each other and Vettle may have caught them up. Now that would have been interesting.

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  • 98. At 6:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

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

  • 99. At 6:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, homerdog wrote:

    Andrew Benson = Ferrari fanboy, if this blog is anything to go by. F1 is corrupt, end of story.

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  • 100. At 6:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    HIGHLANDER, I can not believe you want such a harsh punishment......Mclaren stole papers to copy Ferrari's car coz they can't design there own!!!!! Ferrari did nothing wrong...get over it and don't be so pathetic

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  • 101. At 6:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, Annie W-B wrote:

    I agree with a lot of posters that the decision at Ferrari was wrong. It was a wrong decision for so many reason. It was wrong for the boss to make Massa's own technical boss to give the orders instead of doing the dirty deed himself. Shows great cowardice on his part. One suspects that the boss did not want to do the dirty deed because it would then look like official team orders. I suppose then we would all believe that the message was not team orders!!!

    If Alonso wanted to get in front of Massa then he should have raced him and got in front legally. Instead of having a strop and forcing the order to be given in order for Alonso to get top place. The idea that people are outraged because it is Alonso demanding a change is utterly silly. Alonso is always having a strop and he has a penchant for it.

    As for Massa having to give way to Alonso because Massa was slower does not bode well for future relations either at Ferrari.

    As for this being different to other team orders in the past. I do not see the difference. Massa was ordered to let Alonso past and that has supposed to have been outlawed therefore it is wrong within FA laws and presumably FIA laws. If the FA makes the laws then everyone should abide by them and not flaunt them.

    Not interested in what Schumacher thinks either. He was constantly either getting first place at the expense of people like Barrichello or allegedly shunting people like Damon Hill out of the way in order to stop him winning the world championship. His reputation of being the greatest driver ever will always be tainted with the people who were cheated out of winning races and championships.

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  • 102. At 6:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, AJ wrote:

    I simply don't understand why someone who is supposed to be the best driver (as reckoned by the other drivers) does not feel confident enough to take on his teammate. Why did he not win fairly? Of course he looked sheepish, everyone knows he didn't win the race, it was gifted to him. forget the team orders and the fact they cheated, he simply hasn't the courage to win the title again fairly.

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  • 103. At 6:43pm on 25 Jul 2010, tabman wrote:

    We all know that team orders exist, the problem is that the FIA have tried to regulate against it in an environment where it is impossible to enforce.

    Contracts will always have "sweeteners" that give a certain driver advantages. It's part of the package that gets them to join or stay or even jump ship from another team.

    Coded radio messages to drivers will also continue. Todays message was "Alonso is fater than you". A bit obvious, I don't expect the next coded team order message will be so clear, it oould be anything from "save fuel" to "adjust brake balance" to "you're doing well, go for it" as long as it is pre-arranged.

    Whilst the rule exists though the punishment should fit the crime. $100000 for breaking rule 39.1 is probably viewed by fans, teams and drivers as pretty light. If this is to be the standard penalty for breaching 39.1 then expect the top teams to blatantly issue team orders in the future, $100K is pocket change to these guys.

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  • 104. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, smarttrousers wrote:

    Poor Massa, exactly one year after his horrific crash/injury and he's "instructed" to let his team mate win. His mental state must now be awful for the next few races, always wondering if he needs to pull over to let his team mate get ahead.

    As for Alonso, first it was the the other drivers, then the stewards and now his team mate is apparently against him so must bend to HIS will . . . face it Alonso if you didn't make stupid mistakes you'd have a lot more points, rather than having to steal them from your team mate. The same thing goes for Vittel - again he blew the start trying to cover Alonso (by pushing him towards the walls) but let Massa in . . . the last time I think Hamilton got the jump on him.

    I think the right thing to do, given that they did break the rules, is to give them 0 constructors points for this race and the next one.

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  • 105. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, sonz wrote:

    How can Alonso expect to get respect from anybody? he didn't even try to win the race on his own merits.
    Masa deserved to drive in front until Alonso could manage to pass properly but now both deserve to be disqualified for the pathetic attempt at trying to race.
    This spoils Formula one racing for everybody..why bother to put cars on the track if team orders and such like take precedence over proper racing.
    Why bother to have rules if they are not going to be enforced.

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  • 106. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, Kubica_for_a_prancing_horse wrote:

    I enjoyed the article Andrew, brilliantly balanced I feel on what is such a contentious issue.

    I'm going to be berated for this but I don't feel Ferrari have done anything wrong. As Schumacher pointed out, if Alonso loses the championship by a few points everyone will ask why Ferrari didn't move Massa over at this GP to give him the extra 7 points from winning. They're simply trying to give their driver as much of a chance of winning the title as possible. If this means sacrificing the other then so be it. Only one of them can be champion and, no disrespect to Massa, Alonso is by far the one more likely to achieve it.

    Team orders are a part of the sport, always have been and will continue to be. Andrew brought up Brazil 2007 and Austria 2002 but there have been many more. Kovalinen moved over for Hamilton at this circuit in 2008, Jordan stopped Schumacher attacking Hill at Spa in 1998 (pot kettle Eddie, you don't have the right to criticise), Button was told not to attack Hamilton at Turkey this year and Schumacher mentioned that they were used last race. Why on these occasions was it any different? The order of the Turkish GP was possibly affected as Button showed that he clearly had the potential to pass Hamilton but he was told to hold station under the guise of fuel saving. Why weren't McLaren penalised and everyone outraged about that result?

    The sport is built on winning and that is all Ferrari are trying to do, win the world championship. Team orders are simply a tool to aid teams in achieving it. I feel the rule should be dropped as there's no point trying to ban it as it will never go away and it's impossible to police. Whether it's outright ordering of a driver to move over or coded messages it will remain and I for one do not mind one bit. The sooner everyone comes to terms with it's existence, the better.

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  • 107. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

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

  • 108. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, Daveb500 wrote:

    This spoilt what was shaping up to be another great year in F1. It also shows Alonso's total disregard for those around him. Yes all drivers by their very nature are self centred, but Alonso takes that to another plain.
    He clearly hasnt learnt from his year at Maclaren, or crash gate, where he managed some how to come out without being questioned. Yet he was the only one to gain.
    He has a total disregard alo for the millions of fans around the world. Is he a great driver, I think the answer is no. A great driver would not need help in this way.
    If by some fluke he wins the championship then I feel the whole championship its self is devalued.
    Of course things are engineered, but not at the 1/2 way stage, and not in such a blatent way.

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  • 109. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    Espana bonita- What a ridiculous thing to say. You bet on a driver to win a race and then watch him reluctantly give his chance away to his team mate i.e. a manufactured result. In any other sport there would be criminal charges for result fixing.

    As for Alonso, he wasn't whinging today and actually looked quite sheepish.Maybe that's because he realises how much of a hypocrite he is!
    His comment "this is ridciulous" when he couldn't overtake Massa was unprofessional and childish.It's no wonder he's not liked in the media as all he does is complain.

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  • 110. At 6:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, Rebecca wrote:

    The real tragedy here,is the deprivation of a possible great fight between two great drivers in a an epic F1 car, which is what people hope for in a Grand Prix. A race which is decided by the team in the pits is not the kind of F1 that people want to watch and could damage the sports popularity significantly. Totally agree with Eddie Jordan, as a fan I feel cheated.

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  • 111. At 6:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, Potmotr wrote:

    An interesting piece, but one which kind of backs up a strong theme that emerged during the BBC's post-race forum.

    I must say, I've been quietly shocked by Martin Brundle and especially David Coulthard's attitude towards this today.

    It was very much 'oh well, that's business as usual in F1, the rule banning team orders shouldn't be there in the first place'.

    That attitude short changes the fans hugely.

    If Alonso was, as Andrew Benson says, much faster than Massa all weekend, then let him find a way around the Brazilian.

    Let Alonso be a racing driver, and race for his victory. McLaren allow it. Red Bull allow it.

    Alonso came close to passing Massa earlier in the race, why couldn't he do so later in in the piece?

    Seeing the Ferraris racing each other was thrilling, and I'm sure ultimately Alonso could have got past.

    But we were denied that by a shoddy manipulation, and denied witnessing a decent contest.

    Everyone around my TV (hardcore F1 fans, and relative new comers) let out a loud groan when Massa let Alonso through. It was totally lame.

    I think several of the BBC pundits and writers are losing sight of what should be the most important target for Formula One: Staging interesting and credible races that those at the track and at home enjoy watching.

    Eddie Jordan was bang on today in condemning Ferrari's actions.

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  • 112. At 6:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sibbwolf wrote:

    22. At 6:06pm on 25 Jul 2010, NandoWolf wrote:

    No mention anywhere on 606 about McLaren telling Heikki to let Lewis past in Hockenheim 2 years ago. I wonder why? Because a British driver won.

    ---

    We must be careful. Throughout the season Heikki was much slower - on general race performance - than Hamilton. Also, there was next to no (I don't remember any, but feel free to find footage that shows this) evidence that team orders where involved.

    This time, we actually heard what was suspected (and the stewards claim was in fact) a coded message to Massa to let his team-mate pass.

    ---

    34. At 6:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, capricornvladimir wrote:

    A slower driver should allow the faster one drive ahead without the need of being told so. Massa is always the slower one, there is no need for him to feel hurt.

    ---

    This isn't a sprint. It's a race. The best racer/car combination wins. Massa showed he could fend off Alonso, Alonso simply showed he was the faster of the pair.

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  • 113. At 6:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, Mark Cargill wrote:

    What a disgrace! What about people round the world who placed a bet on Massa to win? In fact what if someone in Ferrari had placed a significant bet on Alonso to win? If the FIA do not penalise Ferrari more than just a stupid fine then the whole F1 circus and this blatant disregard for the rules becomes a complete joke.

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  • 114. At 6:46pm on 25 Jul 2010, Secr3t wrote:

    I think anyone with the slightest common sense can see that was an implicit team order to let Alonso past. No matter how cleverly Ferrari tried to word to get around the ban on team orders. I do also agree with the fact that team orders still exist what ever rules there are in place to prevent them, whether is it is swapping a nose cone or preference in the garage, teams will always try to find ways to get around the rules, does this make it right? of course not! The rules are there to prevent the farce that was the Schumacher incident, I am not saying this is on par with that incident, but even so it still breaks the rules.

    The rule is there to ensure a level playing field and that the best driver wins, which is the whole point of motor racing the best car and driver should win, and for a team to manipulate that result is plainly wrong. And what Ferrari did today goes against the spirit of F1 and goes against the spirit and intent of the rule.

    To issue Ferrari a $100,000 fine does not even equate to a slap on the wrist for a team with such a HUGE budget, fines for drivers or teams in this sport at this level are absolutely pointless because it has no effect. They should have been deducted places for that, only then will teams learn to obey the rules as this is the only punishment that will have a material effect on them.

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  • 115. At 6:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, dansktaff wrote:

    You have to ask yourself why? Ferrari clearly had the fastest cars on the track today, and the best opportunity to pull off a clear victory. I believe that Alonso is NOT the driver he is hyped up to be, and has none of the attributes that are required to make a GREAT driver. Heaven forbid that another driver on the circuit finds themself in a position where they would need Alonso to help them, I fear the result would not be what they would want.

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  • 116. At 6:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

    25. At 6:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tom wrote:
    Alonso said in Valencia that he felt the race had been "Manipulated". Wounder what he thinks of this race then...


    That comment made me laugh hahaha. I exactly agree!

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  • 117. At 6:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, Andy wrote:

    I forgot to mention in my previous post...

    What was worst of all today was to have drivers and engineers and even a team boss bordering on blantent lies, this is morally wrong - the FIA need to fix this, noone wants to see or listen to people trying the hardest not to lie so they don't loose their jobs - is disgusting - this in itself is the bigest problem, the FIA must sort out the rules and perhaps maybe it would be better if they set fixed punishments - that way - if they do wrong they are guilty or not guilt if they are guilty then they know what will happen, the issue is - make the sport more robust or perhaps take away the politics that actually sometimes add to the interest... I cannot think of a sport to compare too where there is so much discretion on offer, I thin todays punishment was however clear - no team can do what happened today - was there first warning - if same happens again then point removed I think - all considered I think fair as long as liability has been admitted...

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  • 118. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Paul wrote:

    Fernando Alonso just whined his way to a victory. I have *never* seen a driver do that. He has done nothing but complain this whole season.
    I wonder what Alonso will say, after all his whining about Lewis Hamilton's drive-through penalty not being sufficiently harsh, after his team was merely fined while Alonso suffered NO consequences *AT ALL*. He is a pitiful excuse for a racing driver.

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  • 119. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, cmwhaha wrote:

    If you think what happened today is ok then you don't understand what sport is all about. I don't care if it is in the interests of the team, it is not in the interest of the spectators. If this is allowed to go unpunished (a $100K fine is peanuts) and Alonso is not docked points then it is seriously damaging to the sport. There are a lot of people who are loyal to drivers and not to teams, and they will be the ones who stop watching. Imagine if you were a big fan of Massa and you saw him with a great chance of winning today, only for the team to tell him to let Alonso past - you would be very upset. The race should be won on the track by the drivers' skill and courage, and not decided in the pits.

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  • 120. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    I think many posters on here don't understand F1.

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  • 121. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Martin B wrote:

    After such a great F1 season to date, why do we have to endure yet another farse! It clearly spoilt the end of the race, Massa's body language all but tells those of us with half a brain cell that he was told to let Alonso through. Its a blatant rule break.

    How many people bet on sports including F1 and would have seen that it was very unlikely that Alonso would get past, only for that to happen and blow their bets out of the water. In Horse racing such race fixing is highly penalised due to the impact it has un those who like to bet. This is out of order and for a sport that says it is at the pinnacle of motor racing, what a laugh !


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  • 122. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Nimmo27 wrote:

    Ferrari have cheated yet again pure and simple and yet again the race stewards and the FIA look the other way its absolutely ridicolous. If it had been McLaren or Red Bull who had done this Alonso would be the first person up in atms the man is a total hypocrite and i hope both he and Ferrari fail to win either championship.

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  • 123. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Semisatanic wrote:

    If this was football or any other sport it would be called match rigging.
    The FIA have no other option than to take all the points away from both drivers and the Ferrari team.
    Eddy Jordan was absolutely right about how wrong this was.

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  • 124. At 6:49pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

    This is typical Ferrari, I'm afraid. They are a corrupt team. They throw scandal over the sport back in 2002, and now they have the pigheadedness to DO IT AGAIN!!!!!! I really, really, really dislike that team (you've probably gathered that from my previous comments over the past year or so on these forums). But I have good cause.

    Who do Ferrari think we are? We could quite clearly tell that;

    * It was a BLATANT handing over of the lead,
    * It was ordered by the team,
    * Rob Smedley apologised for the teams' actions,
    * AND that Massa and Smedley were both LYING when they said it was Massa's decision.

    They shouldn't try acting, because neither of them are very good at it.

    Fernando Alonso hated being at McLaren, because;

    * he was equalled, if not bettered, by a ROOKIE!
    * and the team refused to place him as a clear Number 1 driver.

    So he and Ferrari go hand in hand like a marriage! Ferrari aren't like great teams such as McLaren and Williams. Why? Because they treat their drivers unfairly, they don't let them race, and they constantly slap fans in the face with stupid, pig-headed decisions like these we've seen today. Why on earth do they have so many fans????

    I see that Ferrari have been landed with a meagre $100,000 fine. Tut tut. If McLaren had done the same thing, they would have been disqualified from the race at least, especially when you consider the last few times THEY were accused of breaking the rules (2008 Spa, 2009 Aussie, etc). Looks like a bit of FIA = "Ferrari International Assistance" going on there. Bad times... :(

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  • 125. At 6:49pm on 25 Jul 2010, babychunder wrote:

    I reckoned Massa was good value at exes after qualifying. So I slapped two ponies on. All bets should be cancelled after this shenanigans.

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  • 126. At 6:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, CDMU125 wrote:

    It show that its one rule for Ferrari and another rule to the other teams the fia hav got to do something it gettin stupid

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  • 127. At 6:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

    LOL at those select few who say they're not watching F1 anymore. Oh get a grip, you know you can't stay away, or you wouldn't be discussing it on fan-based forums like these. Hahaha

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  • 128. At 6:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, smarttrousers wrote:

    Dear Kubica_for_a_prancing_horse: "Team orders are a part of the sport"

    Did you not understand article 39.1 "Team orders which interfere with a race result are prohibited." ???

    So you can give better parts to one driver, you can't tell them to pull over ;-)

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  • 129. At 6:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, monstermax22 wrote:

    The hypocrisy and double standards of all this is what amuses me most...when Hamilton was having his dream rookie year and more than holding his own against Alonso, many in-the-know were openly calling for Mclaren to put their efforts behind Hamilton for the 2007 World Championship - now, if thats not advocating the favouring of one driver over another, setting the 'mood music' for team orders, if you like, then I don't know what is. The British media and so-called experts were amongst the most vocal and it will no doubt be the same ones vilifying Alonso in tomorrow's papers. It seems the acceptability of this practice depends on your nationality. Many will not like this comment, but can we honestly say that we'd be up in arms to quite the same degree if Hamilton or Button was driving the winning Ferrari? I think not.

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  • 130. At 6:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, keith-w wrote:

    As always - two rule books, one for Ferrari and one for the rest. Ferrari have consistently bullied the officials to get their own way. This is nothing short of cheating and a disgrace to the so called sport. Bernie Ecclestone doesn't care as long as his pockets continue to be lined. The only way to stop this bunch of cheats is to exclude them from the race thus upsetting ths sponsors. A $10000 fine for Ferrari is a drop in the ocean to them. They have got away with cheating yet again.

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  • 131. At 6:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, themadhammer wrote:

    To me, this just seems to highlight the fact that Ferrari seem to be able to get away with just about anything. Look at last year's championship - Mclaren being disqualified from the Australian GP for lying to the stewards - which I don't believe is covered in the FIA regulations. And also Renault receiving a one-race ban (admittedly overturned) simply for not fixing their wheel cover in place properly. Only Ferrari seem to get away with any breach of regulations. Still, the matter has now been referred to the FIA... who's president is the former Ferrari team boss.

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  • 132. At 6:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    ...........if it was hamilton then he would have prob punted massa off the track

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  • 133. At 6:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

    In reply to THIS comment;

    120. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:
    I think many posters on here don't understand F1.

    ...

    To whom exactly do you refer?

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  • 134. At 6:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, Bob wrote:

    I think you'll find that some of us were complaining about the race fixing in 2007 and not just the Massa-Raikkonen overtake, there were other things that went on in that race which will come out in the future. Probably when Ecclestone is no longer around.

    The fine that Ferrari have been given is tiny in comparison with what they can afford to pay and is therefore not a punishment.

    In reality the punishment should be more severe as this incident was as much race fixing as the incident in Singapore and the incidents in 2007 and 2002. It is race fixing therefore the punishment should be much more severe. The FIA have several options avaialable to them at different levels of severity. They could choose any of the following:

    Ban Ferrari from the constructors championship.
    Ban Alonso from the drivers championship.
    Ban Ferrari from the next race.
    Give both Ferraris a ten place grid penalty at the next race.
    Disqualify both Ferraris from the German Grand Prix.
    Give both Ferraris a 20 second time penalty for the German Grand Prix.
    Reverse the result of the Ferraris so that Massa gets the win.
    Deduct one engine change from each Ferrari car for the rest of the season.
    Allow the Ferraris one less set of tyres for each of their cars at the next three races.

    Instead they chose a pathetic fine. You might as well not have the rule at all which in my view would detract from the racing and devalue the sport.

    There was also another driver who should be penalised as a result of his behaviour in the German Grand Prix and that is Vettel. His move at the start where he tried to push Alonso into the wall was not only unsporting but it was dangerous and caused mayhem further down the grid. I've seen Vettel try this at least three times now this season and he should be reprimanded for it.

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  • 135. At 6:52pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    F1 is a team sport. The Drivers don't make the cars. They are paid to drive for the teams, so it is completely in the team's interest to do what they want. The no team orders rule is just there to discourage blatant team orders so there is no furore, because all the teams and everyone involved in F1 know that team orders happen and will always do.

    Get over it.

    Massa did deserve that particular victory, but he's not in the championship so he didn't need it as much as Alonso who is in the championship hunt still. Exciting championship -vs- one possibly exciting end to a single race - I KNOW WHICH I'D CHOOSE. Championship every time.

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  • 136. At 6:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    I can not understand why Alonso has to be blamed.
    If Massa thought he can win the race, so he should have.
    If he wanted to help the team and let Alonso pass, then it was his decision. Why he has to act like that? I don't understand.
    Even if the team suggest Alonso is quick, then he should have fought racing fairly.
    In my opinion, it wasn't the team order. It was just the fact been told on the radio and Massa himself made the team order.

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  • 137. At 6:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, PNE Fan wrote:

    One thing is for sure, I'll not be buying a Ferrari, even if I could afford it!

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  • 138. At 6:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, mgoulden wrote:

    I feel cheated. The race result was manipulated by the Ferrari team bosses.
    I don't blame the two drivers in this. Massa has to follow team orders or risk losing his drive and, although I do think Alonso's attitude has contributed to the whole sorry mess - if he realy is the quickest driver he should have to prove it by overtaking his opponents fair and square, including his teammate, rather than complaining about it on the radio - he is hardly going to look such a gift horse in the mouth, is he?
    At the end of the day, whatever the pros and cons of having team orders, it states in black and white in the regulations that they are banned. Ferrari have rightly been fined for such a blatant breach of the regulations and further sanctions should follow.
    As for your example of Massa and Raikkonen in 2007, Andrew, more knowledegable posters on this blog than me have quite rightly pointed out the spuriousness of the comparison. Massa could not mathematically have won the championship at that point, making it a fundamentally different scenario than today, and so he therefore correctly took steps to help his teammate successfully win the title instead. The real comparison is Hamilton and Kovalainen at Hockenheim 2 years ago. If team radio communications had intimated that McLaren fixed that result they should have been punished too. Whether they did, or whether it really was Kovalainen's decision to move over, I don't know. Perhaps someone can tell me.
    All in all, the way Ferrari engineered a race victory for Alonso leaves a bitter taste in the mouth.

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  • 139. At 6:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, KnuttyBoy wrote:

    Apparently Alonso knew nothing about Massa letting him through.

    Apparently Alonso knew nothing about Piquet's deliberate crash either.

    Can anyone else hear the words "Liar, Liar. Pants on Fire!" ???

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  • 140. At 6:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stanley Windrush wrote:

    #120 Ryan Reader.

    I think many posters on here don't understand life!

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  • 141. At 6:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, dansktaff wrote:

    FIA - Ferrari Inaction Association

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  • 142. At 6:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, miranda wrote:

    Whether the rule should be there or not doesn't matter. It is there so ferrari were wrong and are hiding behind wording. I think the media should not have asked Massa hard questions on this as he and his engineer were the fall guys and obviously would not be able to contradict team orders. The fans pay a lot of money to watch the best drivers in the world compete on the track and we were robbed of this oppertunity. Yes it was done in the past but it is now against the rules that every-one should be adherring to. What a shame.

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  • 143. At 6:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, sagamix wrote:

    So, Ferrari have been fined for giving team orders which impacted the result (a.k.a. race fixing) - that's good. The first communication, "Fernando is faster than YOU, do you understand?" was crystal clear ... and even if it wasn't, we had the clinching "thanks for being so magnanimous," closing comment from Smedley to Massa. Open and shut case. Ergo the next question: when do we hear what the penalty is for lying about the incident? As so often with these things, the cover up compounds the offence manyfold. I suggest a 25 point deduction off both Ferrari drivers.

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  • 144. At 6:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, Hangman wrote:

    I agree with everything that, DC, Eddie and Martin said, they were all correct in their criticisms and reasoning behind Ferrari's move, although I do feel sick to my stomach that its happened, its one thing to pull the wool over F1 fans eyes but its another to do it and presume we are stupid enough to ignore it.
    Im 40 this year and have been watching F1 since I was a child, Iv enjoyed every race, twist and turn but its times like these I hate F1.
    Im really wondering now what happens to Massa? for the rest of the season now why bother to race? hes not going to win the drivers champion ship, more than this what happens if he is leading the next few races and is faster than Alonso who is behind him, does he have to pull over to let him threw?
    If that happened than I for one cant wait to haer DC's, Eddie's and Martin's comments.

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  • 145. At 6:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    Chris_77 what espana bonita put is dead right if you bet on anything you are taking a gamble. by your retarded logic what if you had bet on alonso .. hmm in gambling there is a winner and a looser if you gamble you have to consider many variables to actually win what if you bet on rooney to score a goal then he gets substituted at half time oh what a shocker quick sue the fa for match fixing

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  • 146. At 6:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, AlberRatman wrote:

    In regards to the Lewis Hamilton pass of his team mate in 2008, Hamilton had been leading the race and was leading the championship until the safety car and Mclarens mistake meant he was back in 4th or 5th place.. 3 other cars where in front and only Hamilton had the chance of catching them.. He did and Heiki did not..

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  • 147. At 6:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, PBennett wrote:

    This is a complete disgrace to F1

    The Ferrari team seem to thin they can do exactly what they like there team manager was even grinning during his interview almost saying "say what you like I can do as I LIKE".

    Well FIA a message for you I will NOT be watching this so called sport any longer if you have a rule and someone breaks it as blatantly as Ferrari did AND as blatantly you should deal with it I mean with all due respects 1 Ferrari sold in the show rooms costs the same as your fine!

    FIA your absolutely dim welcome to the world of disgrace!

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  • 148. At 6:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, JOC wrote:

    Andrew, I am staggered by your blog! The rule was introduced because of the world's reaction to Ferrari's contempt. Ferrari ignored it in Brazil with KR & FM and ignored it again today. They are in the most blatant way possible ignoring a rule introduced because of their behaviour.

    If I was CH at RBR tonight would be bitter sweet. At least Ferrari have shifted the media and fan spotlight away from RBR.

    I also think the implied comment that interference between two competitive team mates is bad but given FM is not competitive with FA, it is ok, is an awful insult to FM.

    As for MS, I can't wait to see him move over before the flag to let his superior team mate, NR pass him.

    I normally enjoy your blog, but this time I think you are way off.

    They should ban pit to car transmissions altogether and use radio for driver to pit only!

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  • 149. At 6:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, wait_and_see wrote:

    What a brilliant day for F1 (I mean that sincerely)!

    We now have out in the open what happens every week. If you're kidding yourself that this is some kind of isolated piece disgusting behaviour just have a think about the amount of "fuel saving" orders, etc we've seen throughout the season. It's funny how when some drivers ask coded questions like "if I slow down will [my team mate] pass me?" this is somehow not picked up on.

    If you're really not going to watch F1 again because of this, bye! I bet you won't though!

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  • 150. At 6:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, cromulent wrote:

    I believe that the driver's championship trumps the constructors championship, so any action taken should not affect the racing between individual drivers. It is not a team sport (each driver is placed individually - there is no team placing, although individual results are aggregated for the constructors championship. In team sports, you play for one result as a team).

    If you take this to extremes: Imagine if Team White Cow had one driver who was their number 1, and the other driver was essentially a test driver - he would try out new components during qualifying and the race, and gather data. This driver would have several pit stops where wings etc would be changed and other settings made. If any components were found to be advantageous, they would immediately be swapped on to the number one drivers car (eg before Q1). Data gathered would be used for the next race. He would have no interest or chance of getting points, so if he did get a good qualifying spot, he would use that position to try to gain advantage for his "team mate".

    The opposite extreme is: No radios, pit board only, pit board messages controlled by FIA. Driver has full control over racing decisions.

    I would have loved to have seen Alonso try to get past Massa. It would have been good racing.

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  • 151. At 6:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, GraymeadYNWA wrote:

    The point about 2007 is a fair one, but the sport has had various incidents since then which has tarnished the sports image, chief among which was the Singapore fiasco. In these times we want the sport to be 100% clean and fair. Today, which ever way you cut it, it wasn't. The simple fact is why should Alonso gain an advantage for his team mate not being in the title race, Button, Hamilton, Webber and Vetel do not get that luxury, and it makes a mockery of the sport

    And for me, the fact that a Massa win would have been so brilliant one year after the accident makes it even worse

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  • 152. At 6:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sibbwolf wrote:

    64. At 6:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, Scuderiafarr wrote:

    People have very short or selective memories. After the webber/vettel incident in Turkey, Mclaren issued team orders to stop a battle between Hamilton and Button. No one moaned about that. Just because the pantomine villain Alonso is involved everyone is outraged. I'm tired of this anti Alonso attitude the UK has because he dared challenge your golden boy!

    ---

    Actually, Mclaren issued fuel warnings. Something that has been a consistent feature of their racing this year.

    Also, there are a lot of Alonso fans in the UK. No, I'm not one of them - I don't like drivers that whine instead of putting their heads down and getting on with it.

    Alonso at Mclaren was hilarious. He was matched by a rookie, complained, got FIA observers, and when they said there was no favouritism for the rookie, Alonso left the team at the earliest convenience. And to make it harder for a lot of angry fans to like him, he has spent a lot of his time on the track this season whining.

    To put it simply, if he whined less and raced more, it'd be easier for the fans that don't like him to like him.

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  • 153. At 6:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, Phil Morris wrote:

    $100,000 fine for team orders, BLOODY PATHETIC!!!! It should have been a minimum of $1,000,000 plus Alonso down 5 places in the results or disqualified, plus a loss of a further five places for the Hungarian GP.

    What is so special about Ferrari apart from their sweet smelling and succulent after end which the FIA and the poison dwarf appear to worship?

    I hope no one will misunderstand my thoughts on cheats. Those who paid for tickets to see the farce should request a 50% refund.

    Kind regards,

    Phil.

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  • 154. At 6:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sat_tire wrote:

    Formula 1 is a team sport and the result was what Ferrari needed as a team. Sadly the rule came about because of the utterly ludicrious situation that took place in Austria in 2002, when the championship was in its infancy. Today everyone is saying that this is now a 5 driver championship. You cannot commend that and condemn what Ferrari as a team did, because they are not mutually exclusive.

    Look at times in history when the same thing has happened and even more blatantly such as Senna ceeding the win to Berger on the final corner of Suzuka in 1991 or the Beeb's David Coulthard swapping positions with Mika Hakkinen in 1998 after a problem with Hakinnen's radio. Even more extreme in 1979 when Gilles Villeneuev respected a gentleman's agreement with Jody Scheckter at Monza. Reverse the positions and you have a different World Champion. Peter Collins gave up his car and by so doing the World Championship to Fangio in 1956.

    You can understand the rule on the basis of Austria 2002, but it is a rule that does not work in a team sport, particularly when you get to the sharp end of the championship. Teams have swapped positions by masking it in strategy and that is cheating the paying public even more because a driver is being held back for a number of laps to get the gap right. This used to be easily done in the old fuel filling races. 2005 in particular with Montoya and Raikonnen. Everyone knows that the moral victor today was Massa, Ferrari may even give him the win bonus money. Of course it does not detract from what the records say. If Alonso wins the championship by less than 7 points, todays work by the team will be vindicated.

    It was interesting to see Eddie Jordan trying to justify his stance on the basis of what he did to ensure his first 1,2 finish at Spa in 1998. Funny bloke, although he is probably better suited to comedy after his gaffe yesterday when DC had asked Reubens what the velcro strap was and he was beginning to talk about it only for Mr Chuckle to say something like he was going to ask an important question now rather than the nonsense DC came up with.

    And Christian Horner after it was reported he had instructed Mark Webber's race engineer to get Mark to move over and allow Helmut Marko's golden boy through. Pilbeam apparently refused or did not the time to give the instruction before the crash.

    This is yet another of the rules from the control freak era, that passed thanks to the News of the World, that must go.

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  • 155. At 6:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, Kate wrote:

    It confirms what I've been saying for years. Fernando Alonso is a big baby who spits his dummy out the pram whenever things don't go his way.

    If he is such a good driver, he should have shut up and driven his car and overtaken Massa fairly. Instead he whinges on the radio and Massa is told to yield.

    How dare he celebrate this victory. He didn't earn this victory.

    HEre's hoping he is riddled with technical troubles for the rest of the season and doesn't win the championship because quite frankly his complete lack of respect for the sport and terrible sportsmanship - he doesn't deserve any more points.

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  • 156. At 6:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Look, the only person who should feel cheated is Massa and maybe Smedley. Get over yourselves.

    It's part of F1 and always has been and a silly grey rule like that - similar to the 'NO NEGOTIATIONS TO SEE IF A PASS IS OKAY' rule seen at the British GP - will not stop such things.

    We should just enjoy the spectacle. I'm enjoying the whole thing today because it added a dimension to a pretty ordinary grand prix, and has also spiced up the championship.

    F1 is about politics as much as it is about the actual racing.

    And guys, do you seriously believe that just because the rule is there, team orders don't go on? They do, whether explitly or not. Strategy, performance parts and on track action is all manipulated by the teams. Just today it was exposed because it was done poorly.

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  • 157. At 6:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, mascotman wrote:

    The racing was once again up to is usual standard. "Formula 1 Yawn" The result was blatantly fixed, it made a mockery of the sport and deprived the paying supporters and the TV audiences the chance to see some real nail biting action. Heads should roll at Ferrari. If the FIA really mean business and are determined to make the teams obey the rules then they should suspend Ferrari for the rest of the season, of course they won't, there's far too much money involved and anyway they haven't got the guts. I think Santander the major sponsors should have a quiet word with them, I doubt Santander want to be associated with cheats, no matter how glamorous they are.

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  • 158. At 6:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, 4mulaone wrote:

    Come on guys and girls, get a grip! Team orders happen every race. Look back and see. Nothing gets said about it on here if British drivers do it but, as soon as johnny foreigner does it, then shock horror!
    At least Ferrari didn't have an extra pedal or a hidden fuel tank or cause a deliberate crash, need I say any more?

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  • 159. At 7:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, R Goodall wrote:

    Yet agin Ferrari flout the rules.Am I wrong, or does F1 translate as Ferrari first?

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  • 160. At 7:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, sagamix wrote:

    On top of everything else, if I were Massa I would not appreciate being told "good lad" after being forced to let Alonso through. Patronising and very very naff.

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  • 161. At 7:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    And yes, someone just referred to 'fuel saving' orders. Those are team orders. Remember Turkey? Webber was told to go in fuel saving mode so Vettel could get a shot at him.

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  • 162. At 7:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, fenlander wrote:

    Alonso gained a hollow victory - and I think he knows it. Massa is embittered, Smedley embarrassed and at least half the Ferrari garage is discouraged. The press are baying for blood and F1 fans are, in large part, disgusted with the marque. Also they've been fined an amount that would pay the coffee bill for several weeks.

    Does anyone at Ferrari still think this was a good idea?

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  • 163. At 7:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris wrote:

    Ok so they have fined Ferrari 100,000 dollars but I think they should take a hit on the track & start from the pit lane in next weeks race in Hungary ! anyone agree ?

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  • 164. At 7:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, Peter wrote:

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  • 165. At 7:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, adamata wrote:

    So we have a rule and this post seems to forget that. We either have this sport racing by the rules or not. No interview to date has convinced me this was not team orders and that they effected the race.

    If the rule is unworkable then get rid of it. As a lifelong f1 fan this was appalling and really does nothing for the sport or the viewing public is only confirms that things are fixed behind the scenes.

    Ferrari are insulting my intelligence at least just admit what happened.

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  • 166. At 7:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sibbwolf wrote:

    158. At 6:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, 4mulaone wrote:

    ...Look back and see. Nothing gets said about it on here if British drivers do it but, as soon as johnny foreigner does it, then shock horror!

    ---

    That's a lovely myth, by the way. Insert wink here.

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  • 167. At 7:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dean wrote:

    Disgusting... If it were any other team involved there would be points docked. Suprise suprise Ferrari are involved so the results stick, they just get away with a fine. What a disgrace, its the last race i'll be watching.

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  • 168. At 7:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, genjirrumatio wrote:

    You make some truly irrelevant points, Benson, in light of Domenicali claiming there is no number one/number two driver set up at Ferrari and that Alonso was faster than Massa, not to mention that the rules specifically state that it is not for the team to manipulate race results. Have you ever considered not commenting on F1 ever again?

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  • 169. At 7:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, davidw76 wrote:

    There's nothing "murky" about it. There's a rule and they broke it. Sure, the season so far hasn't matched the pro-Alonso/Ferrari narrative that you and your BBC colleagues worked so hard to create, but that doesn't change the rules. Alonso is clearly the favored driver at Ferrari but he still can't get the job done, face it. I think what this season has shown is that the supposedly elite drivers; Hamilton, Alonso and Vettel are really not that much better than tier 2 drivers like Button, Massa and Weber. This obviously doesn't sit well with folks like Andrew Benson who see it as their role to mythologize about the so-called great ones.

    Ferrari are just not the team they used to be and I suspect that Raikkonen will remain Ferrari's last WDC for some time to come. It will be interesting to see Benson tie himself in knots trying to explain that one.

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  • 170. At 7:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, oxted1 wrote:

    Now there's the rub!

    Let's make a rule, for all teams to adhere to and then, when it suits Ferrari, totally ignore it.
    Whether team orders exist or not, anyone who's followed the sport for more than a nano-second know they do, the FIA should hang their heads in shame.
    Let's imagine were in the last few races, points are all important, the guy in first place by a country mile is told to let his team mate overtake him, the third place man has to give way to his team mate because he has no chance of winning the championship, but his team mate is 2,3,4 places behind him, and so on and so forth, the whole field would chop and change in the last few laps to massage the result.
    Rather than motor racing maybe we should call it, big business fixes races to suit themselves and two fingers up to the fans who at the end of the day support the sport!
    One solution, no radio's, no pit boards. Ah but again this could all be sorted out within the team before they even start.
    Only one car per team, boring or what.
    Perhaps we resort to what we had previously, team orders and we, the public, moan and grown about races being staged.
    The answer? No idea, but in all this what really gets my goat is the toothless FIA doing nothing.
    The Fia need to grow some.
    Mr Todt, forget that you are a Ferrari man through and through and do the job your being paid to do!
    FIA/F1 need to sort out this mess out, the fan's are sick and tired of staged results, we don't want the Prost/Senna scenario of drivers taking each other out, although this was highly entertaining, but come on, we the fan's deserve better than this!
    My ruling: Ferrari, loose all points for the season and get a $500,000 for bringing the sport into disrupte along with a drop of 10 places on the grid for both driver's in the next race.
    Not Alonso's fault, not Massa's, but most of us could see exactly what went on so why not the FIA?

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  • 171. At 7:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, Adam Linley wrote:

    Surely the real point here is that for the rest of the season, we now know that Alonso is will be playing the game to a different set of rules to the other championship contenders. They have to beat a team-mate in (usually) equal equipment, he doesn't. They won't be handed any free points, he will. Team orders may be rife in F1, and may have always been, but there's a time and a place for them and it isn't halfway through the season with the teammates' tallies barely a win apart. I'd love to ask Fernando, what's the point of winning, when winning is as joyless as it was in Hockenheim today?

    Oh, and regarding Brazil 2007, it isn't true to say that 'nobody complained then, so why now?'. Raikkonen may have been a brilliant and brave F1 pilot but his championship was the most hollow in decades, lost by McLaren and the perpetually petulant Alonso, rather than won by Kimi, and reliant on a team-ordered victory at the last gasp. The team orders were sensible, understandable, unavoidable - but they definitely devalued the win. Just as today's have.

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  • 172. At 7:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

    I don't know who Ferrari think we are. They were all so clearly LYING, it was untrue. They need to take some acting classes. Ferrari have always been, and continue to be, F1's most unfair, most unsporting, most awful team.

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  • 173. At 7:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, Peter wrote:

    Simple, Ban Radio contact during the race. Brilliant idea!

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  • 174. At 7:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, Andy wrote:

    For the few that comment 'people do not understand F1' - if it were not for the interested people watching and commenting... there would be no F1 for you to watch! - everyone has their own view - if you disagree then perhaps comment back while being constructive and help the fans understand??? - although you may alienate most of the fans that pay for the races you love to watch... if you act like you know it all...

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  • 175. At 7:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

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

  • 176. At 7:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Stop attacking Alonso. It wasn't his fault. Yes, he wants to win so he can win the championship, but every driver does.

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  • 177. At 7:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, bambalec wrote:

    utterly ashamed to be a ferrari fan today

    alonso had won me over before today, driving with a great energy. He's had some tough luck recently. But today I lost all respect for him, and the ferrari management. With kimi and massa, the team always preached that one driver would only be favored once the other is mathematically out of the championship. Even during kimi's horror 2nd half of 2008, the team still gave him as much of a chance as possible before backing massa. If they had got behind massa earlier on, he might have landed that WC.

    With the new points system, the difference between massa and alonso was not large enough to warrant what happened today. I am utterly convinced alonso's whining on the radio was a big factor behind the switch. The guy has no class. Look at his track record; cheating in 2007 and then grassing the team up. Cheating in 2008 at singapore (although supposedly he knew nothing of it), but i'm sure the pressure to appease alonso's massive ego was a factor in manufacturing a win for him. And now lauding it around ferrari. I hope he never wins a title again for ferrari or anyone else for that matter

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  • 178. At 7:06pm on 25 Jul 2010, Hutch wrote:

    After over 30 years of following F1, this is the last straw. This is'nt racing & it's no longer a sport. I won't be watching any more. See ya - losers.

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  • 179. At 7:06pm on 25 Jul 2010, John wrote:

    To all of those people who like to quote what they consider as other breaches of rules. These points are irrelevant. The point that is to be considered is did Ferrari break a rule during todays race. Not is it OK to let Ferrari get away with it because someone else got away with it before.

    Whether Alonso was faster than Massa is again irrelevant. You make your own race from start to finish. Alonso made a bad start and Massa had a good one. It is then Alonso's "job" to make amends for his bad start. If he can't get past then that's his tough luck.

    F1 has not done itself any favours today. The paying public don't like to be conned. They paid to see "a race". The viewing public likewise sat down this afternoon to see "a race". If people are not going to enforce the rules or the rules are too vague either get rid of them or make them less vague.

    The truth of the matter is that todays "ladies excuse me" manouveres probably only affected the drivers championship and not the constructors. If Alonso should win this by 5 points or less my suggestion would be that he give the trophy to Massa. It would also leave a very bitter taste in the mouth.

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  • 180. At 7:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, BR wrote:

    F1 is a sport where "pushing the edge of the envelope" of the rules is normal.
    Today, the manipulated result was just bent in spirit, if not the absolute letter of the law.
    The rule makers should have seen this coming.
    Ferrari do seem to have a stranglehold on the interpretation of the rules.
    That's a shame, because I've loved them for years.
    But not after today.
    Goodbye F1.

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  • 181. At 7:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, skeltim wrote:

    Match fixing.
    Does it matter? what about the guy in rio who has bet on massa to win? this is no sport when team bosses can decide the outcome. f1 seemed to have cleaned up it's image, it had become interesting and exciting again and now it is once again the domain of fixed races and underhand tactics.
    do you want to watch a sport where the bosses have control over the outcome, where race engineers have to apologise for decisions made by suits. the guy in rio who bet on his idol lost his money but the team boses and owners who have their preferred driver higher in the race standings have won theirs.

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  • 182. At 7:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, Lord_Lancashire wrote:

    In response to this comment;

    "....... 178. At 7:06pm on 25 Jul 2010, Hutch wrote:
    After over 30 years of following F1, this is the last straw. This is'nt racing & it's no longer a sport. I won't be watching any more. See ya - losers......."


    Haha I highly doubt that...

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  • 183. At 7:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, maria wrote:

    It was decided that Ferrari so blatantly ignored rule 39.1 and what do they get, a slap on the wrist and $100,000 fine. Would it not have made more sense for Ferrari, as a constructor, to have had their points from today revoked and maybe then they'd get the message and realise they can't get away with it. It might not be a fair rule but at the end of the day rules are rules and if it were another team flaunting the rules as they do, they'd soon jump on the bandwagon.

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  • 184. At 7:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sibbwolf wrote:

    161. At 7:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    And yes, someone just referred to 'fuel saving' orders. Those are team orders. Remember Turkey? Webber was told to go in fuel saving mode so Vettel could get a shot at him.

    ---

    Quote for context. You may not be refering to me. If so, skip to last paragraph...

    As I said, the fuel saving 'orders' have been a feature of Mclaren's racing this year (Webber is Red Bull.. insert a wink here).

    Unfortunatly the rules are made grey for precisely this reason - if the teams don't warn the drivers about low fuel (or indeed, issue orders to save fuel), cars may not finish the race.

    The rule needs to be clarified (yet to see that done with any rule, just new ones added), removed (which I think is preferable in this case) or enforced (another step along the road of turning this into A1 instead of F1).

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  • 185. At 7:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ninja Hedgehog wrote:

    Lets not forget that when Ferrari did this in 2002 the fine was $1m, that’s 10 times more than they were fined this time, and that was only for breaking Podium protocol as the on track antics were within the rules at the time.

    Now, unless I have missed something (currency devaluation / a massive decade long world recession etc) are the FIA saying that breaking Podium protocol is 10 times (+ whatever inflation has been in the last 8 years) more serious than breaking the rules about team orders which interfere with a race result.

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  • 186. At 7:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, tabman wrote:

    To say that Massa isn't in the championship chase is a strange thing to say when there are still 200 points left to play for and only 38 separating the two drivers. I'm not a Massa fan but after today a little bit of me will be cheering him on to beat Alonso in each of the remaining races.

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  • 187. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, Madgick wrote:

    I don't get why everyone is dragging up the Lewis and Heikki thing. There are plenty of examples of this happening in the past, everyone is aware of that. The point is this time there was a clear rule against it and they shouldn't have done it. What makes it worse is that we've seen McClaren and Red Bull both let their drivers race this season and Red Bull even paying the price for it in Turkey. Its unfair that Ferrari chose to avoid that same risk

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  • 188. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, RantingMrP wrote:

    It is fixing, it is a shame, it is disgraceful, it has no place in the sport. There was a suggestion that teams should be able to field only ONE car per race. Should be looked at very seriously - the farce that Ferrari enacted today makes it that much more urgent.

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  • 189. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    Tifoski- You completely miss the point.Yes Gambling is about chance (the clue is in the name!) but todays result which was so clearly manufactured and that is punished in other sports(if it can be proved). The best driver did not win today as the leading driver gave up his position and was not overtaken properly.

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  • 190. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Okay, I'm not posting anymore on here. I am fed up with all these uneducated so called 'fans' not weighing up all the arguments and the situations and just diving in with completely ridiculous opinions. It's more farcical than what happened today. Seriously, it is.

    Get over yourselves. And stop attacking people and things when you don't know half of what goes on in F1, or even WHAT F1 IS ABOUT.

    Shameful.

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  • 191. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, SupaSix-1 wrote:

    In reply to THIS comment;

    120. At 6:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:
    I think many posters on here don't understand F1.

    --------------------------------------------------------

    More importantly it seems like many dont understand the RULES!

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  • 192. At 7:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, sbl21 wrote:

    I have been a avid follower of F1 for 28 years & I have never seen such a disregard for rules ever, its disgusting that this result stands. It makes me think about never watching F1 again. I admit I am slightly biased against the result by the fact I had a £20 bet on Massa to win with great odds I would have done well if they hadnt switched Alonso for Massa. In horse racing if a jockey was to hold a horse back to allow the 2nd place guy through he, the owner & the trainer would have been brought in front of the stewards & investigated for race fixing, the same could be said for many sports, there is no difference here with this situation, no offense to Massa but that is exactly what he did today at this GP 'Race Fixing' in front of millions of people yet Ferrari, Alonso & Massa get away with it, disgusting & ridiculous, why bother having any rules at all!!!

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  • 193. At 7:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stargazer wrote:

    After Fernando Alonso had a tantrum when he saw that he couldn't pass his teammate on the track or in the pits, what were Ferrari to do? If he was so much faster, why couldn't he just overtake this slow guy who was holding him up? A great driver would have won on the track, wouldn't he???

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  • 194. At 7:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    mascot man i suggest you do your research santander were sponsors of mclaren when they got caught spying in 2007- and when hailton lied to the stewards to the detriment of another team.. all Ferrari have done is swap their own drivers round

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  • 195. At 7:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    Someone please answer this......Why are Ferrari cheats???? they haven't done anything to anyone else...not like hamilton with the safety car??????????? it happened within their team and...

    MASCOTMAN>>>> Santander were sponsors of mclaren in 2007 when they got done done cheating.............. ferrari have not cheated

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  • 196. At 7:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, RadShrew wrote:

    This is simply more of the same thing that we see season after season. Some more blatant than others. The irritating thing is that this does not affect the team points position. Only the individual driver championship. This illustrates the fact that THIS accolade is held in higher esteem by the team.

    If that's the case, just bring in team orders, make it transparent, let it become an integral part of the sport, let driver two defend the team mate ahead, ANYTHING to make the racing decision making and events within each race honest, above board and worthy of discussion without the underhand cheating that the current rules encourage.

    Simply introduce rules that mean the fans of the sport can enjoy each race in the knowledge of what the aim is, without pretence, without having to listen to team and driver post race comments that all too regularly insult our intelligence. This is meant to be racing, not 2 hours of moving advertising hoardings to a worldwide audience considered stupid enough to swallow any of this guff.


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  • 197. At 7:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    Blaming Alonso for this case is nonsense.
    Was Vettel blamed for being treating as #1 when he got the front wing?

    It's just clear that which driver is better than the other if you work together and set up the car with staff and analize the races and practices.
    Massa should have proved he could be #1 like he was in 2008, then he didn't need to slow down.

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  • 198. At 7:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, pups wrote:

    at the end of the day it is a RACE where all drivers are RACING each other, ferrari or any other team should not be allowed to decide the race. the race should be decided by RACING nothing else, what has happened in the past dont matter. don't mind who wins the title as long as the fans get good quality RACING, not team orders.

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  • 199. At 7:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, Purple Brand Hair Dryer wrote:

    Ferrari clearly broke the rules but they will get away with it. Remember people cheats will get caught one day its only matter of time.

    P.S: I love F1

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  • 200. At 7:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, psgm1969 wrote:

    As always one rule for Ferrari and another for the rest.

    They would have thrown the book at Maclaren.


    Disgraceful decision

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  • 201. At 7:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, bluechicane wrote:

    Plain and simple....it was cheating.....take away Alonso's points and place him last.....deduct the Constructors points from him as well.....place Massa first since he was the innocent one in all this.....Ferrari get away with it yet again.....what the hell is a $100,0000 fine to them???

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  • 202. At 7:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, Colin Thomas wrote:

    I listen to Shumacher and others saying that the most important thing is to win the championship. No, the most important thing is provide entertainment. Formula one today lost credibility in the eyes of millions of casual viewers, who will no longer regard it as a sporting contest and will have lost any interest. Fewer viewers = less advertising revenue = demise of Formula One.

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  • 203. At 7:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    Bye hutch you wont be missed

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  • 204. At 7:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, CommonPeople wrote:

    one rule for farrari, another for everyone else:
    The way the race and the incidents during it were managed raise doubts that could see F1 lose some credibility again, as it was seen around the world.

    –Ferrari statement, 27 June 2010

    It’s a shame, not for us because this is racing, but for all the fans who came here to watch a manipulated race.

    –Fernando Alonso, 27 June 2010

    I don’t consider Formula 1 a sport anymore.

    –Fernando Alonso, 10 September 2006


    In 2002 they were fined $1mil, this time $100k = peanuts - at that price they can buy Alonso the Championship and safe us mugs the time and expense of watching them in anticipation of seeing so called world class drivers pull off an amazing overtaking move.

    Disappointed with Forum coment re. betting (not a betting man myself, but) a dominant team could "fix" results if team orders allowing results to be manipulated were allowed.

    To say this result is right for team is to say that Massa is now No2, but who is to say at this stage that Massa wasn't getting his mojo back and would go on to give Alonso a good run for the rest of the season? We now know that he won't be allowed to! Does that not deprive spectators of competition?

    And all because Alonso gets his own way by throwing his toys out of his pram - he blew his chance to pass Massa on merrit.

    I can't remember the last race of 2007 (I CAN remember Aust 2002) so maybe Massa's move then was not so blatently manipulative??? What it does show though is that Farari have form for showing contempt to the fans.

    The right punishment would be docking the constructors points for this race and reversing their finishing order to re-rstablish the status quo so that a driver is not seen to gain by such a blatent breach of the rules.

    Should there be team orders?
    A very complex question. Who would be happy to be a second driver? Would it have to be same for all teams? Would a team order afect the outcome for another team? (Could Vettel have got Alonso if not let past?) Should there be championship for 1st drivers and 2nd drivers?

    Anyting that prevents a driver from going all out for the win can only be bad for the sport - the next time Massa gets the jump on Alonso, Alonso will know that he can just shout loud enough to get Massa to move over.

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  • 205. At 7:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim wrote:

    I have to agree with the point made by Kev, What about the unlucky ones who
    made a small wager on Massa winning today?

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  • 206. At 7:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, pups wrote:

    blame rests with the FIA.

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  • 207. At 7:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sibbwolf wrote:

    190. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Okay, I'm not posting anymore on here...

    ---

    I find it easier to skip those posts, or quote them (for context) and point out how silly it is.

    Otherwise, the internet would be less fun.

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  • 208. At 7:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    And why do we bother arguing about this? Do you think the FIA or the teams read this, and give a real hoot about the fans? They are in it for money and publicity for their parent companies. They are businesses. That's why teams struggle sometimes and collapse.

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  • 209. At 7:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    Ryan Reader- We all bow to your superior knowledge. Eddie Jordan was a team principal and he seems to pretty forthright with his views(obviously he's wrong as well)

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  • 210. At 7:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, philo911 wrote:

    I despair. Just when F1 seemed to be getting more interesting - we're back to the old team result fixing shenanigens.

    Today's actions reflected extremely badly on Alonso but more so on Ferrari who's previous appalling actions with Schumacher and Barichello instigated the rule change regarding team orders.

    The fine imposed is derisory especially given that the results will stand.

    Good on some of the BBC commentators for criticising what happened.

    Unfortunately the BBC (regardless the quality of their coverage) will lose viewers now as the sport descends into into its old ways and F1 will also lose race attendees and devotees.

    It's so sad that genuinely open motorsport competitions such as Le Mans receive so little coverage in comparison to F1.

    I'm certainly not going to bother wasting my Sunday afternoons any more watching F1. What's the point?



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  • 211. At 7:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, Northy83 wrote:

    Ferrari have clearly defied the regulations, and the punishment is a $100,000??? If that is the only action a team can expect in a contravention of the rules, then teams may as well break them if there is the potential of winning both drivers and constructors championships further down the line as a result. Perhaps theres a little making up going on here with Ferrari following the harsh penatly dished out to Alonso recently over the Kubica incident?

    Its a poor show in my book, and im a ferrari supporter!!! Only a few races ago, the Red Bull's took each other out they racing each other so hard, thats motorsport. The reason for the new points structure was to encourage 1st and 2nd to RACE each other for the win, not increase the gains to be reaped from team orders.

    The FIA must surely see this is not good for the sport, manufacturing a closer drivers championship at the expense of a decent racing spectacle.

    Its a tough sport to regulate, but the decision was made to include the team orders rule, so either get rid of it, or enforce it.

    I hope no one had cash on Massa to win.....

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  • 212. At 7:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, SwiftRyu wrote:

    Best result for the Championship is for Massa to win a race so we have another driver out for the win. Now this has just demoralised one driver, destroying his competitive chances and brought shame on another.

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  • 213. At 7:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, ssmith12 wrote:

    It would be nice for the world champion to have earned his title rather than handed it, so let's hope today has no influence on the final results. What frustrates me more is how the whole team denied team orders took place. Do they have no respect for the F1 authorities, the fans or even some self respect. The order itself was bad enough, pretending it didn't happen was embarrassing for the sport. I spent Saturday defending the sport to friends that can't understand why I am interested in F1. I am beginning to wonder myself.

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  • 214. At 7:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, Magik wrote:

    Not that I genuinely think that this comment will be read, as indeed I have by no means read all of the other comments, but surely comparing it Massa giving up a win in Brazil 07, or Kimi giving up second place in China 08, don't make any sense, at these points the the leading driver was mathematically out of the championship battle.

    I personally can live with that kind of team play in a situation, in the same way that Kovalienen was prepared to be used as a block to help Hamilton win in 08 or Fisichella desperately trying to defend for Alonso in China 06, that is team play.

    Today's events were not and to me has effectively ended Massa's career at Ferrari, as they have now clearly favoured one driver over another.

    I also think that Ferrari have shot themselves in the foot in two crucial ways, they will have alienated a team member who was coming back into form, and they have ruined all of the good work they have done in the past year and a half to prove that the new regime are not the same as the old and not prepared to cheat in the same way.

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  • 215. At 7:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, sensationaljohn wrote:

    Many people is afraid of alonso that´s why they can´t stand this result. Alonso has had all the bad luck of the world in the last couple of races . Why isnt anyone complaining about the stupid move by vettel? Doesnt that deserve a mention? Was that clean? I think it was stupid , and he deserved a puinishment too. And as for Mc Laren...... they always use team orders , it´s just that they do it in a subtile way " Jenson you must save fuel". Mc Laren can´t complain because they have been favoured in the last two races with stupid fia decisions against alonso.
    First of all in valencia the safety car is deployed exactly in front of alonso to ruin his race ( I dont think on purpose), hamilton surpasses it ilegally in one of the most shameful days in the history of f1 sport. A blantant illegal move is not found guilty by the stewards they dont analize it until 20 laps after..... favouring hamilton and directly disrespecting all the spanish crowd of valencia . IN silverstone KUBICA was out of the race and they still punished alonso again and again theyu deployed the safety car to spoil his race ...... How can anyone here say that alonso does not deserve this win? He was the fastest man on the grid all weekend, he could have overtaken massa but he didnt want to , he didnt want to end up like webber and vettel because he knew he would end up surpassing Massa..........

    All my posts are banned in BBC , this shows how democratic this anti alonso and anit ferrari forum is.............If you say something againgst hamilton your post will be banned... it´s how things work aroung here.......

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  • 216. At 7:16pm on 25 Jul 2010, F1supporter wrote:

    Once cars are on the track it must and should be the best man (or woman?) wins - there is absolutely no reason why any driver should be asked or give away their postion.

    I recognise that teams want to win the ultimate prize (money sponsours etc) and in some cases this may mean that they will want to have their drivers work as a team. This should never be at the expense of the drive on the day.

    In my view it is simply cheating - what driver can really look at the trophy and feel proud of it when they know someone else let them win and perhaps it should rightly belong to someone else??

    Have we forgotten the simple rule of fair play? Is money really getting in the way of common sense?

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  • 217. At 7:17pm on 25 Jul 2010, PIP wrote:

    Now can any one shed any light on how I am going to get my 1 Grand back that I bet on Massa t6o win? This is outrageous. Farrari get a 65K fine and I can not be the only one to bet on Massa this race anyone else out there???

    I want my money back if this was a horse race the world would be up in arms.

    I am out of motor racing for good

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  • 218. At 7:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, VillaThrilla wrote:

    Completely agree with those people who have lost faith in F1. This is the first season i have followed for some years but I wont be watching anymore. I dont want them to just con me out of "Racing" otherwise they might as well tell me the results before starting. Disgusting.
    Just like in football the big names are only thinking of themselves and not the paying public and fans who are the ones who keep the sports going.

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  • 219. At 7:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, pups wrote:

    FIA need to change rules so every one has to race each other and letting some one past should result in a drop in points.

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  • 220. At 7:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, rob199 wrote:

    Events like today's really do tarnish the reputation of F1 with all the fans who tune in or pay to go the circuit to watch a genuine sporting competeion with a worthy winner. How can you ever really completely prevent team orders though? The teams and drivers have endless meetings where they discuss what's best for the themselves and the team any driver will know when it's in the teams interest for him to allow his teammate past without any communication needed over the radio. A driver can also very easily back off his pace slighlty and brake a bit a late for a corner to allow his team mate past in what looks like a normal overtaking manvouver.

    Today, Smedley and Massa where not wanting to play ball and had to be told to allow Alonso through which they did but made it absolutely obvious that they were doing it.

    All teams will bend the rules in every area to get the most out of them and that's one of the great things about F1 but when they obviuosly break them they should face the full rath of the FIA.

    If Ferrari weren't 100% confident that Smedley and Massa were going to make the switch propely they should've left the drivers as they were. Alonso would've had 8 points less for the championship but I suspect he'll now suffer a much larger penlty at the hands of the FIA not to mention how badly it makes Ferrari look when ultimately they're only in the sport to make people want to buy Ferrari road cars.

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  • 221. At 7:21pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    PIP i can smell somthing sounds like hull spit

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  • 222. At 7:21pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    I don't say I have superior knowledge, but I do say that I take everything into consideration and make a judgement then. I do understand what F1 is about, just that many people on here don't.

    But I don't care anymore. I still will enjoy F1 for the RACING and the POLITICS. Controversy and all of that makes F1 more exciting. Same as football. If a referee didn't give that penalty that he thought was not a dive, or if he didn't send someone off for hardly nothing then it would be uniform and boring.

    And I now know that I am being contradictory - I said I wouldn't post anymore on here but I clearly have!

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  • 223. At 7:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, formulafix wrote:

    BBC coverage was great, really enjoyed the race until Massa was told to move over for Alonso. Turned TV off in disgust as this was a waste of everyone's time - the great thing about formula 1 recently is that there has been racing, only need to look at red bull and mclaren. This was back to the bad old days and I will not watch if F1 tolerates this sort of fix. A fine is not the answer, only disallowing the ferrari points can resolve it and restore credibility. Who cares if Alonso is faster - the whole point is that he needs to be able to pass Massa by way of driving ability rather than fix.

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  • 224. At 7:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, Fed_Borg wrote:

    A few points here, if Alonso was so much faster than Massa, why could he not pass him on merit? I thought Alonso was a fighter, after this he is just a cry baby, getting the team to secure a win for him. As for the authorities, if Ferrari are guilty of giving team orders surely a fine cannot do.

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  • 225. At 7:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ferrari_Cheaters wrote:

    I can see how upset some people are about this but bear in mind the FIA will do nothing, Ex-Ferrari boss (and now the FIA president) Jean Todt will wash it under the carpet.

    There are times in life when you just have to realise there are people in life who are far better connected than you or I - we all regret what happened today but nothing will change the result now.

    Sadly, fair play doesn't come into it.

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  • 226. At 7:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, TheRBman wrote:

    This is an extremely poor article. In case anyone had not noticed, the stewards found Ferrari guilty and applied the maximum penalty. Even referring the matter to the WMSC to see if they can load more upon Ferrari. There are no grey areas here, Ferrari were found guilty. So you believe it's acceptable to have one team breaking this rule as they please and others following it, can't you see the disparity that can come from this? Really poor journalism.

    The question about whether this rule is fair and best for F1 is another matter. Cheating is not an acceptable method for dealing with rules you do not believe are correct, whilst others have to follow.

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  • 227. At 7:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    oh and im muchas gracias to alonso i bet 1 million on him winning ( if you can live in a dream world i might as-well )

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  • 228. At 7:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    So are you not all disgusted at Red Bull's attempt to get Vettel to pass Webber at Turkey and the swapping of the front wing 2 weeks ago? Because that is also team orders. That is also the team management interfering directly to get a direct result or to improve the chances of a result.

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  • 229. At 7:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, JP93 wrote:

    A fine is pathetic - if Alonso was so much faster, he could have overtaken on his own. Even my six year old (with Aspergers) turned around and said "Isn't his meant to be a race?" "Why has Massa let him past?"
    Out of the mouths of babes.....

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  • 230. At 7:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, sdug80 wrote:

    I really don't see what all the fuss is about. As much as I dislike Ferrari and Alonso, I think Ferrari made the right descision as Alonso is their best bet for the championship and he is playing catch up.
    It's not like Melbourne 1998 or Austria 2002 where the order was completely unnecessary.
    If team orders are banned then I would like to dispute the result of the 2007 championship which Lewis Hamilton won as Ferrari obviously told Massa to let Kimi by, therefore breaking the rules.

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  • 231. At 7:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ceekayz wrote:

    In my opinion there is only one way to get rid of team orders - only permit one driver per team. This seems a quite radical change as I have always known F1 with multi-driver teams since the 80s - I'm not sure if it has always had multi-driver teams?

    With one driver per team at least all the racing would be real - and if one driver did help another out then their team would be unhappy and feel let down so the racing would be truer.

    Another alternative under the current rule is to do what happens in horse racing - if one horse "interferes" with another and is deemed to have improved it's place at the expense of the other horse then it is placed behind the horse it "interfered" with. In this case, ignore the first past the post, disqualify Alonso and place him behind Massa. Still a Ferrari 1-2 but in the correct order for the race, for the fans of the sport and for the FIA to gain back some credibility that they are running the sport "for the good of F1".

    Otherwise, allow team orders but be prepared to lose a lot of spectators and not really be regarded as a sport. I cannot think of another sport where someone can give their all and still be ordered to "lose".

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  • 232. At 7:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, Hangman wrote:

    186. At 7:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, tabman wrote:

    To say that Massa isn't in the championship chase is a strange thing to say when there are still 200 points left to play for and only 38 separating the two drivers. I'm not a Massa fan but after today a little bit of me will be cheering him on to beat Alonso in each of the remaining races.

    But if Massa is in front of Alonso then he has to pull over to let him pass, if that happens then why should Massa race?
    Your argument is correct, their are a load of points still left to play for, so why should Ferrari act in the way they did now?

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  • 233. At 7:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, George of Farnham wrote:

    FIA = Ferrari International Assistance

    Simple fix. 1 car per team.

    Shocking rule breaking today. Shocking punishment. End of F1 as a 'sport'.

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  • 234. At 7:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

    203. At 7:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    Bye hutch you wont be missed

    -------------------------------------------------------------

    I don't think he got your message, he'd already left. Probably gone to the bookies to put another 20 quid on Massa for the next race. Smart chap.

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  • 235. At 7:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    RBMAN >>>> FERRARI HAVE NOT CHEATED

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  • 236. At 7:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, alan_addison wrote:

    Oh dear, by the tone of this article, I take it that the BBC now endorses cheating.

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  • 237. At 7:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, lukaszan wrote:

    I seriously don't see what the whole fuss is about. I've been a fan of F1 for almost 20 years, and I've always accepted it's the team sport. Be it big manufacturer teams, or small private teams, they employ a number of people who together work for the ultimate target: World Championship. Engineers, designers, mechanics and drivers are employed by the team, paid by sponsors to do their best to achieve this result. Ultimately, having 2 cars, 2 drivers, the team will come to a situation where, it will not be in it's interest to let the drivers battle it out, and will have to make a decision. As DC said, all drivers are aware of it, all teams do it, and have been doing it since the very beginning of F1. You either accept it or not.
    The other thing is, if you want to ban team orders, where do you draw a line? Is ordering one driver let other through a team order? What about ordering a driver not to race the one in front? What about slowing down one car to create a gap for the pit stops?
    If you want to see racing where the best driver wins, go see karting. F1 has always been about the best driver in the best team, and the team having 2 great drivers, has all the right in the world to choose 1 of them, they believe has the better chance of winning WC. That's the reality of F1.

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  • 238. At 7:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, rfoj35 wrote:

    F1 as a sport is a joke! It is a rip off for fans in the stands and the people watching on tv who want to see racing not results contrived by geeks in matching jumpsuits who understand fluid dynamics! At least the Olympics, Fifa ect try to hide their corruption F1 does it in front of everybody what else can you say about a sport that run by the teams competing in it.

    And after writing this i realise F1 is such a joke i am not even angry about it!

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  • 239. At 7:28pm on 25 Jul 2010, 9darter wrote:

    Absolutely disgusted with the way the race finished. Just as I was commenting to somebody about how exciting the race was we suddenly get Rob Smedley giving a coded message, which was about as subtle as a sledgehammer, and now F1 racing has gone back to the dark ages of 2007.

    Once again the sport has been tarnished and will put off the millions of viewers who want to see a fair tustle between the drivers, and what is the punishment? A slap on the wrist of about £60000. Probably the same cost of the Ferrari presidents jet fuel for his journey home.

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  • 240. At 7:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

    Actually, who's to say people at the top of Ferrari didn't have 100k on Alonso to win the race and Massa to come second? Stranger things have happened. Being in the sport could just be a smokescreen.. and a way to race fix.

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  • 241. At 7:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, Barnabas wrote:

    All teams make mistakes or break rules occasionally, but today the race was ruined for all the watching fans. I was looking forward to Massa winning a year after his accident, but the victory was taken from him by a management decision.

    I've not much time for Alonso but he struggled to raise a smile at the "win", so its not really fair to criticise him too much for today's events. He knew it wasn't a good win.

    The funny thing is, if they'd left the driving order alone, it would have been a fantastic day for Ferrari and the race would really have been back on for the rest of the season. Now its a moment of shame that will be dragged up time and time again.

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  • 242. At 7:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, Fairfax43 wrote:

    When Hamilton was in doubt as to whether it was correct to overtake a very slow Trulli under the safety car, the investigation forgot why it was convened, but went after Hamilton for lying about his team's instructions. As a result he was heavily penalised. Now, for cheating Ferrari have been fined fourpence ha'penny (or the equivalent), but nobody appears to be concerned about the corporate lying by just about everybody connected with the team. I excuse Massa because he couldn't bring himself to lie and so we got "no comment." What I really like is the total consistency that is being applied. Some hope!

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  • 243. At 7:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, dannypp1 wrote:

    They made a decision which went directly against the rules. They should be punished harshly for it, because formula one would not exist without the fans, and the fans want to see racing... Had massa continued to hold alonso up, who knows what could have happened with vettel and the outcome of the race. Also Alonso's attitude was a disgrace to the sport.

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  • 244. At 7:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, 4mulaone wrote:

    Congratulations to Ferrari today and good luck with the rest of the season.
    It's sad to hear from all the enraged fans whose teams are apparently whiter than white and never issued team orders or done anything remotely dodgy. Hmmmm, let's see...industial espionage, hidden fuel tanks, deliberate crashes, 'fuel saving mode', front wing taken from one driver and given to another.
    Please just stop all the bleating. Ferrari won fair and square today. So what if Massa let Alonso through? It's a silly rule which no-one adheres to and don't think for a moment that your team wouldn't do the same in a similar situation. David Coulthard said it all today. Listen again to what he said.

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  • 245. At 7:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, tifosi2k9 wrote:

    What is this britains got talent now people with complaints are using a sob story fancey using the fact your six year old has aspergers to emphasize your point i mean really. my two year old says Hamilton twit crash now thats quality

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  • 246. At 7:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, Jon wrote:

    You can debate whether its correct or not all day long - but that rule is in place here and now. Therefore, Ferrari and Alonso should pay the price.

    Alonso is so quick to complain about others but keeps quiet when rules have been broken to help him.

    This will be interesting. This will be a test of the new FIA head. Will Ferrari get punished as they should?

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  • 247. At 7:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, jgr6whc wrote:

    I feel sorry for the thousands of spectators who spent a lot of money and were denied a race because of mercedes decision.I think that both mercedes should have been disqualified to deter future rule breaking as a fine means nothing to the large teams.

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  • 248. At 7:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, McFerrari wrote:

    No one complained about Brazil 2007 because everyone understood the decision and the reason why it happened. Alonso's got 8 more opportunities to get in the title hunt yet Raikonnen had only one and he had to win that one. It's pretty obvious isn't it.

    Yet another blog by Benson sticking up for Alonso.

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  • 249. At 7:31pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    OH DEAR people really dont understand the word cheat??

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  • 250. At 7:31pm on 25 Jul 2010, mikeo45 wrote:

    What a disgrace! The BBC should not cover this 'so called' sport until it becomes a real sport. The UK government should withold the F1 license for operating in this country until F1 put their house in order.

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  • 251. At 7:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Number 237 has it spot on.

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  • 252. At 7:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, Need4Speed wrote:

    I will just admit it, I highly value Alonso as a F1 driver and he is one of the best drivers I have seen, also because of his Spanish character, which might lead to somewhat stronger outings from time to time. People and press tend to stress and look for things that aren't there. And sometimes you should stick to the facts as they have happened.

    Now I don't have access to all the facts, and I have been watching the race mainly on ORF1... First of all, it is not Alonso's fault the way the teamorders have played in his favour... Some refer to his outlet of Alonso's "that is ridiculous", but on ORF this was explained as being a response to what the team said to him, while he was chasing and attacking Massa, where the latter has come to close the door (after Alonso almost got past him). Fact is that we saw him afterwards drop 3 seconds and we saw him and massa exchange fastest laptimes...

    I am going on tin ice here, when I try to explain these events. I assume Ferrari got scared seeing their two drivers race and taking eachother out, while they are clearly on top of the game. So they invented a game within the race to determine the race-winner (minimizing the risks for losing their one-two result). They have asked Alonso to back-off and may the one who sets the best laptimes win this race... Hence Alonso's ... that is ridiculous (they might have told hime to "save fuel"... ;-) That also explains why they informed Massa that Alonso was quicker (after closing the 3 sec gap)...

    Believe me, neither of their drivers is happy with the outcome, Alonso prefers a fair fight, I am sure, but it is a very rational explanation maximising the result for Ferrari... And also for Massa it is definitely a pitty, because he was really on top of his game as well (and finally had some luck [which has been letting him down for quite some races] at the start that Vettel chose to block Fernando...

    If you ask me, I also feel that the outcome has been manipulated (but only who won the race within the same team)... and prefer to have a battle on the circuit. Yet I do understand that they wanted to compensate latest unfortunate outcomes of the previous races, with an overrationale behaviour... so Ferrari secures the maximum of points... Regarding Red Bull's (and eventual McLaren) comments, don't get carried away, because one could easily explain changing wings befoe qualifying as team orders, or what tos say about "saving fuel"... Ferrari may have to keep their points today (I think these points are well deserved) , but will have to deal with the bitter taste too!

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  • 253. At 7:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, sportmadgav wrote:

    The point that most people miss about F1 is that it is a team sport not an individual sport. The fact that the fans focus more on the Driver's standings than the Constructor's standings does not change that. This rule is a stupid rule, impossible to enforce credibly and causes more problems than it solves.

    If we just accept that F1 (like cycling) is a team sport with individual winners then this rule would not be necessary. I agree with DC and Schumi on this one, they all do it. How much did the Vettel / Webber crash cost Red Bull, surely they would have been better taking Ferrari's approach. It was exciting but stupid. The subsequent duel between Button and Hamilton was equally stupid and had most British fans screaming at the TV saying "what are you 2 doing? Didn't you see what just happened to Red Bull?".......they were just following F1 guidelines I'm afraid.

    If you allow team orders I think the strategic possibilities would make F1 a more interesting spectacle.

    If you don't want team orders, have teams of 1 car and 1 driver.

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  • 254. At 7:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, Gooner Maestro Drives A McLaren Mercedes wrote:

    Come on Andrew, you write good stuff but your undying love for Alonso is a bit irritating. There is no defending what he and the team did today - he was heard over the radio demanding to be let through (not the first time we've heard it from him - very unsporting man he is).

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  • 255. At 7:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, Surreybloke123 wrote:

    What is the point in watching Motor RACING when the result is artificially manipulated like this? I want to see the best man win, not a petulant Spaniard who can't tolerate anyone being better than him and so stamps his foot until he gets his own way. Nothing short of a disgrace, and no less of a disgrace than has happened in the past with Ferrari and McClaren et al. The continuation of the lie afterwards by all involved at Ferrari makes it even worse, although of course being that they were breaking the rules they'd hardly admit it. For Smedley to pretend the meaning of what he said was completely different to how and what he said is complete nonsense.
    They might just as well give the World Championship to whoever can whinge the most in a short competition and finish it - Alonso would probably win. His arrogance is so tiresome that because he believes he is the best, that therefore he should automatically win. I can't believe you can get the same satisfaction from being given your win, to actually going out there and doing it through your own endeavours. Its the same kind of arrogance you see in football teams like Manchester United and Chelsea who are also well practised in throwing hissy fits when another "lower" team has the temerity to try and beat them.

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  • 256. At 7:35pm on 25 Jul 2010, George of Farnham wrote:

    Fairfax43 - Spot on!
    I guarantee there will be no mention of the wholesale lie upon lie of the entire Ferrari team, sadly, with his statement Massa is involved in the lie too now.

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  • 257. At 7:35pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

    236. At 7:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, alan_addison wrote:

    Oh dear, by the tone of this article, I take it that the BBC now endorses cheating.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    Well they did delete my post for daring to say that Alonso and Ferrari had breached... apparently that 'defames' them in some way, eventhough the stewards have already fined them for this. So proof that they do in fact.

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  • 258. At 7:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, joamell wrote:

    I am amazed That anyone at the BBC can try to justify Ferraris actions. We are entitled to the best spectacle possible for our licence money. We might have seen an unforgettable battle for 1st place which could well have involved Vettel. Instead we had the usual procession home. In 2002 Ferrari were fined £1000000 BEFORE the team orders rule existed But today they are fined 100000(90% less).If they are guilty they should have been fined heavily and Alonso stripped of his win. In the end their is a rule and they broke it!!

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  • 259. At 7:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Deano68 wrote:

    Alonso should not be allowed to keep first place. He should be disqualified

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  • 260. At 7:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    if you don't want team orders, don't watch F1. Simple answer.

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  • 261. At 7:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ivan Velasquez wrote:

    Good points, Andrew, well done and balanced.
    I think people should realize we're only watching/attending one race in a championship.
    I know it's a bit anti-climactic, but it's also a sport of strategy. As long as constructors are allowed two cars in the championship, then it becomes a team sport, and, as Ferrari and Massa himself have said, the team comes first.
    You have a point in that it was so obvious when Massa let Kimi pass in 2007, yet, nobody said a thing.
    Besides, it's the constructors who hire the drivers, not the other way around. Lastly, what would be the point in having Alonso and Massa fight it out, with good chances of wrecking their cars, just now that they are getting back into the championship?

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  • 262. At 7:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    It's been said that almost all the teams have a team order at sometimes and the drivers like DC, MS confirmed it.
    So why bother making the rules against that?

    This time it was only too obvious and then Ferrari got fined.
    If it was done in a better way, then no one would have known.

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  • 263. At 7:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, xth wrote:

    I am sure if the driver involved was Hamilton or Button all the people crying foul would be quiet.

    Grow up, F1 is a team pursuit (I wouldn't call it a sport), there is nothing wrong with team orders, they are part of it. I wish it was all allowed and out of the open.

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  • 264. At 7:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, FergusonFootball wrote:

    The answer to this saga seems simple:
    Ban Communication with drivers and teams during the race - except numerically through pitboards.
    It sometimes embarrising listening to engineers telling the drivers how to drive.
    Maybe F1 has become to technological?

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  • 265. At 7:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, Simon Clayton wrote:

    How long before Fernando Alonso becomes the most hated driver in Formula 1?

    He lacks the professionalism and respect to be a 'gentleman' driver of old. Granted, this was a team decision but come on... REALLY?

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  • 266. At 7:40pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    Don't you all know that stewards are always right?

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  • 267. At 7:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, Duncan Gafney wrote:

    My Personal observation would be this.

    Andrew, why is it that cheating, is condoned, even sanctioned in F1, when if there was eve a suggestion of race/match fixing in any other sport, it would be stamped on, the parties found guilty would be summarily ejected from the sport and there would no comments supporting their decision?

    In response to comments about Haliton being let past by Heiki, or Kimi by Massa in the past, the big difference here, is that there were no team orders over the radio. Was there a discussion beforehand? possibly, or maybe we are doing people a disservice and both the other drivers in those circumstances were acting for the good of the team at their own behest?

    The short answer is we will never know for sure, but the rules are the rules, whether they are right or wrong in a personal opinion, but in my case, I believe that any sort of fixing of the result is totally un-acceptable.

    In this case, Ferrari can deny all they like that they issued orders, but clearly the Stewards believe as do everyone else on the planet, that they did fix it.

    I love Ferrari, and I am truly sad that over the Schumacher years and apparently continuing now, it appears that there is one set of rules for Ferrari and their main driver and one set of rules for everyone else.

    Does anyone here honestly believe that had it been Hamilton and Button, being given team orders over the radio that Mclaren wouldn;t have been diqualified and handed a massive fine?

    $100,000 dollars is peanuts to Ferrari and no dis-isentive to stop future cheating.

    I must admit that I used to quite like Fenando Alonso, and i certainly had no problem with him, but all he seems to do these days is whine and complain.

    Yet, now he is being the benefiary of rule breaking, he's strangely silent, he graciously accepted the swap and clearly knew it was going to happen.

    The simple point is that Ferrari blatantly broke the rules, Ferrari themselves gained no benefit from the swap, the only beneficiary was Fernando Alonso, maybe Ferrari did it to stop him whining liek a spoily child...

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  • 268. At 7:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dodge wrote:

    Distgusting!! Alonso throws his toys out of his pram again and Ferrari jump. I think Alonso should have been dropped 5 places. It's what they deserve and it would stop future incidents. Ferrari get away with too much as always.

    If ferrari want to have a strop again and leave F1 then let me hold the door open for them. They are supposed to be a manufacturer with a solid reputation built on a long racing history. There is no glory in people letting you win! Ferrari gained nothing today but lost a lot of respect!

    I thought I was watching a race, not a script!

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  • 269. At 7:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, willowfan wrote:

    If F1 wants to be treated as a TEAM sport, then get rid of the Drivers championship altogether as it is effectively meaningless.

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  • 270. At 7:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

    266. At 7:40pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    Don't you all know that stewards are always right?

    -------------------------------------------------------------------------

    Like referees, we have to accept their decisions no matter how stupid, 'unfair' or crazy they may seem. Alonso v Hamilton earlier in the season, well that now appears to be just what Alonso deserved. What goes around, comes around.

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  • 271. At 7:43pm on 25 Jul 2010, Chris_Page wrote:

    "First of all, technically, Ferrari did not order Massa to let Alonso win, not in so many words."

    The intention was as clear as day! Did you hear another version of the team radio? Ferrari put Rob Smedley and Fil Massa in an untenable position. Domenicali's brazen act of dishonesty on camera when interviewed was as bad as Alonso's snide look in his post-race interview. I nearly threw up in my mouth. Of course, if Ferrari had been thrown out of the race, Massa would've lost any points in a race that was rightly his to win - which wouldn't have been fair on him. The FIA (Ferrari International Assistance, in case anyone had forgotten) have done as much as they can, but it still leaves the stench of Ferrari being the de facto owners of F1.

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  • 272. At 7:43pm on 25 Jul 2010, James Autar wrote:

    Motor racing is the most over-rated sport I've come across. A procession of cars going round in circles and then at the end someone decides who will win. Why a Grand Prix attracts crowds of 100,000 is beyond comprehension. Most people that I have spoke with tell me that they only go to watch as they hope to see a crash! What about the bets that were places on the guy who was forced to finish second? The bookmakers should pay out on him as well as the 'winner'.

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  • 273. At 7:43pm on 25 Jul 2010, Cornish Dave wrote:

    I thought this was clear - team orders are illegal. This was clearly a team directive - Robe Smedley apologised to Massa on air! If it is illegal then both Ferraris should be disqualified and not fined a paltry sum. I don't know why we continue to watch - it completely ruins a wonderful sport!

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  • 274. At 7:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ricardo wrote:

    everyone keeps saying alonso cheated he didn't! the team made that dicission, alot of people keey saying if i had bet on massa to win the race. can i sue ferrari because they commeted fraud. Rubbish i don't believe no one would have betted on massa winning this race with alonso and vettle in front of him. I certainly wouldn't have betted on him looking back at his previous race results this season alonso has clearly been the more consistent and quicker driver.

    every alonso/ferrari haters who commented on here are just worried we might come and steal this championship away from Mclaren.
    people shouldn't lay into MB and DC i though they speak alot of sense. every team need some element of control or management its good to see drivers in the same team racing their one another but taking points of their one another is not gonna help beacuse there is only one championship Red bull good example if red bull adopted the same mentallity as ferrari they would have been miles ahead in the both championship by now this is why ferrari are the most successful team in F1 because they know how to win championship.

    personaly i don't think i was robbed of a grand stand finish lets be honest it would have been a very boring finish to the grand prix because i doubt both ferrari drivers would be as stupid as both red bull drivers at what happen in turkey. people should stop have on alonso you are making other british people look pitty and bitter. maybe you are all right in thinking ferrari though that the viewers are stupid to not notice what they were doing. But then agin maybe you are all stupid for thinking these sort of things don't happen

    NO SPORTS IS HONEST AND THE WORLD IS NOT PERFECT WE ALL WOULD DO ANYTHING AT SOME POINT IF WE OFF TO EVEN IF IT HURTS SOMEONE ELSE THAT'S LIFE

    good result for ferrari 1 2 come on reds!

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  • 275. At 7:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, Mattikake wrote:

    I wonder if Christian Horner would've paid a poxy £64,000 for a 1-2 in Turkey?

    £64K for a breach of the regulations is a joke. It's either wrong or not, not sort of a little bit naughty...

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  • 276. At 7:46pm on 25 Jul 2010, Our_Nige33 wrote:

    Great result.

    I placed a tenner on Alonso today.

    Seriously, I wonder if the crash that took out Webber and Vettel in Turkey cost the RB team more than $100,000.

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  • 277. At 7:46pm on 25 Jul 2010, rob199 wrote:

    What's the point in Philipe Massa turning up to the remaining 8 races of the season when the best he can hope for is to finish 1 place behind Fernando Alonso!?!

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  • 278. At 7:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, Mattikake wrote:

    btw, F1 is never a team sport while it remains that one driver is out to beat another. The only true team motorsports are endurance racing with 2 or more drivers per car...

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  • 279. At 7:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    COME ON FERRARI KEEP UP UR GOOD WORK :)

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  • 280. At 7:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, geomians wrote:

    I find the FIA utterly shameful over this. Ferrari are cheats and have been proved to be such by this measly fine. How much do they get for winning a Grand prix? So they still have a big pay day and a minor percentage taken away. When McLaren stole information from Ferrari they got totally hammered for it. When ferrari break rules they are treated with kid gloves. Millions of people around the world watch this sport, and millions of pounds are sunk into it. For what? Cheats to prosper? I've had enough of F1 and I hope many more have to. FIA and Ferrari, hang your heads in utter disgrace.

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  • 281. At 7:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, McFerrari wrote:

    I never see an article from Benson which talks about Alonso's dark days like being involved in Spygate, Singapore 2008. You may portray him as perfect but he is anything but Andrew.

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  • 282. At 7:49pm on 25 Jul 2010, PeterSal wrote:

    Massa should have just driven on and ignored the radio.
    The stewards were slow again on this one, when Massa gave up his place, Alonso should have been told to give it back.
    To see so many people telling so many direct, bare-faced lies is very demoralising - how do they expect anyone to believe a word they say in future?
    This incident ruined the race and will lose fans of this sport in their thousands. Did a single person look happy afterwards? No! A very bad day for F1.

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  • 283. At 7:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, the3douches wrote:

    I think we should remember that Alonso's and Ferrari's Championship hopes were really on the ropes (to use a boxing analogy) prior to this weekend. So I can totally understand why Ferrari took the decision that they did, it was in the best interests of the team to give the leading driver in the Championship maximum points to haul him back into contention.

    However it didn't make for easy viewing because we tuned into see a race. And I as I'm sure everyone else was, were enjoying a great race where Alonso and Massa were fighting for the lead and then just for Massa to surrender that lead to the car he had been fighting off at the hairpin shortly before just left me feeling cheated and empty.

    So yes I can totally understand why it had to happen, it is after all a team sport, but that's not what the world wide TV audience tunes into see! So you see there's conflicting interests there between what the fans want and what the teams want. And you just can't keep everyone happy, unfortunately.

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  • 284. At 7:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, downforce wrote:

    Andrew, liked the piece but like the other BBC commentators you seem to want to justify that which cannot be justified.

    The rule exists, Ferrari broke it and the resultant penalty rather did nothing to redress Ferrari and Alonso's gain within both championships.

    No doubt debates will rage on about team v driver championships but the net effect of this and previous breaches of the regulations is to demean the integrity of the sport as a whole and most importantly the fans that keep the sport a vibrant and growing business in which it can attract global audiences and high profile sponsors.

    As far as DC and MB's post race comments, sorry but Alonso and Massa along with all the other F1 drivers have on their CV - RACING DRIVER, so let them race!!

    If you want team rules as opposed to regulations governing the sport then scrap the main interest of most fans, the driver's championship and let the constructor's battle it out. If the rules are there to be broken then why not go the whole hog with fixed passes, deliberate shunts and hidden extra's on the cars, great spectacle but certainly not sport or sporting.

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  • 285. At 7:52pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sibbwolf wrote:

    260. At 7:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    if you don't want team orders, don't watch F1. Simple answer.

    ---

    Oddly, I agree.

    As painful as it is to see/hear team orders, this is a team sport.

    The rule is a joke. To enforce it, they would have to remove the "team" part of the sport. That is, reduce teams to single cars, or remove the Constructor's championship. Neither of which would be good for the sport.

    ---

    265. At 7:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, Simon Clayton wrote:

    How long before Fernando Alonso becomes the most hated driver in Formula 1?

    ---

    Never, I'd hope.

    ---
    265. At 7:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, Simon Clayton wrote:

    He lacks the professionalism and respect to be a 'gentleman' driver of old. Granted, this was a team decision but come on... REALLY?

    ---

    The past few seasons have not been kind to him. In 2007 he joins a new team, alongside a rookie driver. He is the reigning double world champion and the best driver on the grid - until the first race, when he finds that his team-mate, the rookie, is not going to have the usual back-of-the-pack first year. In fact, this rookie was just as skilled and aggressive as he was, and adding this to the fact the Ferrari car seemed superior and had a good pair of drivers, made what was meant to be an easy championship year hard. Mid-way through the season, he had already lost control to the extent he was no longer happy at this team.

    2008 he's back where he was happiest. However, the car is not up to scratch, the Ferrari and Mclaren are well out in front.

    2009, is filled with controversy, with two drivers in a great cars going on to dominate the first half of the season, and while that team lacked the development power to remain at the front, it went on to win the championship - without Alonso.

    2010 and Alonso is in the dream team, but not the dream championship.

    I've said he needs to put his head down and get on with racing, and I stand by that. The past few seasons have shaken him (and made the English/British media hate him to an extent), he needs to get past that.

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  • 286. At 7:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Madgick wrote:

    190. At 7:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ryan Reader wrote:

    Okay, I'm not posting anymore on here...

    ---

    I'm counting at least 5 posts since then

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  • 287. At 7:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Roger Allott wrote:

    F1 is, and always has been, a team sport. Each team has two drivers, a multitude of mechanics, technicians, designers and administration staff. If we wanted F1 to have no team orders, the only solution is to make teams enter no more than one car each.

    What bugs me about today's fiasco is that if the $100,000 fine is appropriate, the stewards are saying that Ferrari, Alonso, Massa and Rob Smedley lied to them. The penalty for lying to stewards in 2010 should be exactly the same as that meted out to McLaren/Hamilton in Australia 2009.

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  • 288. At 7:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Espana_bonita wrote:

    I think most of you have issues with Alonso coz he's not English.....pathetic As for Ferrari you all are scared we are gonna win the championship!!!!! ha ha ha venga alonso!!

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  • 289. At 7:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, Colin Thomas wrote:

    What sticks in the gut is the whinging of Alonso over recent years, with recents comments such as " It`s not fair ". I find it hard to believe that he was not complicit in the Piquet/crashgate affair. We never were told who gave anonymous evidence to the FIA in return for immunity, or why Alonso at the time did not question such a strange short fuelling strategy.

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  • 290. At 7:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, philhalliwell wrote:

    So Alonso likes to claim his wins, without winning? Seen that before, he really thinks he is a winner. Dream on.
    What about all the people that placed a bet on Massa to win? I'm a big Ferrari fan, but not like this. I wanted to see a race.

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  • 291. At 7:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, ClaireB97 wrote:

    I would like to ask why these types of team decision to allow one driver to win over another are not looked at more closely by the Gaming Commission. I mean I understand the comments of DC and MS following the GP that the team has to consider the bigger picture, but surely this is a form of 'match fixing' which has implications on bets that people may have placed. After all anyone placing a bet on Massa would have got pretty good odds and they have potentially been robbed of a win. This cannot sit right and I wonder whether the FIA need to consider this aspect more closely, especially in light of the snooker scandal earlier this year.

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  • 292. At 7:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, Rob Greenhalgh wrote:

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

  • 293. At 7:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, brian costin wrote:

    fixing a horse race is illegal the same should apply to F1 after all bets have been taken on the outcome of this race and the championship

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  • 294. At 7:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, EdddieJo wrote:

    Ferrari continues to demonstrate that they have no commitment to the sport only to themselves. Fernando and Ferrari suit each other perfectly and I find them both distasteful in their assumed superiority and self serving egocentric displays......pathetic!

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  • 295. At 7:55pm on 25 Jul 2010, Brian_from_Rhyl wrote:

    DC and others were stressing the point that F1 is a TEAM sport and the drivers need to act in the interest of the team. However, there was no mention of the fact that there are TWO championships in F1, a drivers championship to decide the best driver and a constructors championship to decide the best team. From a constructors point of view the order of the Ferrari's today was irrelevant - the points for the TEAM are the same. Today the best driver did not win, Alonso may have been quicker in the second part of the race but he could not overtake Massa on the track. I was sickened to see a great driver like Massa humiliated like this, having to watch Alonso celebrate his victory and watch the Spanish flag being raised - you could see how it was hurting him.

    This farce was then compounded by the decision of the FIA to fine Ferrari. Ferrari broke the rules to gain an advantage i.e. more points for Alonso in the drivers championship. The punishment of the FIA does not address the advantage gained by breaking the rules - in my view the FIA should have placed Massa first and Alonso second, to undo the advantage gained, and fine the TEAM for breaking the rules. The FIA decision is a slap in the face for those teams who have abided by the rules and allowed their drivers to race e.g. Redbull

    I am proud to be a Brit and see the way Lewis and Jenson race each other to the best of their abilities but have the up most respect for their team mate - well done boys, it may not win you the championship but I am sure has won you lots of friends in F1.

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  • 296. At 7:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, 31bowler wrote:

    Too many naive people here. My opinion has always been that FIA is not a competition it is a business. Who is going to be the champion of the year was decided even before the 1st race was raced. The saga on the track is just to give you guys something to talk about.

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  • 297. At 7:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    Some points after reading through all the previous comments.

    In most forms of motor racing the teams have two drivers/riders yet you only hear of F1 favouring one driver/team orders. It proves that it is only, as a poster originally said, 200mph billboards in a procession for nearly 2 hours.

    As for Alonso being faster all weekend why didn't he use his alleged greater racing skills to pass fairly. Because he just isn't that good. As for one poster saying that if Hamilton had been behind Massa he would have shunted him out of the way. Somebody correct me if I'm wrong but has Hamilton ever done that to any other driver (Blatantly).
    Also I remember at Seguna Leca a couple of years back that Casy Stoner had been faster than Rossi all weekend yet Rossi won the race by using greater racing tactics. Now this was done on a motorbike where passing is a lot easier. It just shows what class can do.

    Also why is Massa out of the drivers championship. With 25points for a win he could make a run for 1st place as well as Alonso, especially regarding his "bad luck" in the previous races. I genuinely feel sorry for Massa for the race, but he also made his own bed by poorly allowing the pass to happen. If there are team orders make it less obvious on the track!!

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  • 298. At 7:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, Romabuk wrote:

    OK – I can understand many of the comments about the rules and team orders but the thing that I can’t get my head around is, having been found guilty of cheating, the result was allowed to stand. A relatively small fine for such a rich team does not compensate the fans that pay good money to support the (sport). Shame on the stewards and shame on Ferrari. Funny how Alonso seems to be at the centre all the time!

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  • 299. At 7:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, Adam_994 wrote:

    All I can say is; what an absolute shame. There's no need to even argue about it, it was the most obvious illegal team order ever made. If Rob Smedley was merely informing Massa that Alonso was quicker (only by a small fraction), then why did he put so much force into saying it? It was clear that he didn't want to convey that message, and it's also clear that Alonso and Ferrari may be the most harmonious driver-team relationship of recent years. They go perfectly together; they're both dishonest and unsporting. The whole of Formula 1, including Massa deserves better than that.

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  • 300. At 7:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, bekspop wrote:

    I wish people would stop blaming Fernando Alonso it is not his fault the team bosses decided to brake the rules, its absolutely obvious he had no idea on what was happening.
    People should put the blame on domincalli as he it was his decision to tell massa's engineer to let fernando pass as he was simply quicker.
    The FIA need to make the rule clearer and inforce it more to stop it happening again as many teams might decide that the best way to get thier number one driver on top is to do this.

    BRING ON HUNGARY :)

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  • 301. At 7:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, tony6562 wrote:

    Has anyone noticed that where ever Alonso goes he always leaves a trail of contraversy. At Mclaren there was the spying problem which ferrari complained about know alonso is at ferrari, problems at renult with yet another race win contraversy and now another win with contraversy.

    What is the sport coming too to allow this sort of action and not to see or investigate these actions.

    I am a fan of the sport but find it difficult to watch when the result is decided in the garage.

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  • 302. At 7:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    One final point for all the posters saying Ferrari didn't cheat.
    News for you they did or they wouldn't have been fined by the stewards.

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  • 303. At 7:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, Captain_Sabih wrote:

    My solution is easy.

    No onboard radio or pitboards allowed. AND DO AWAY WITH BLUE FLAGS. Make your own way through traffic.

    It should be up to the driver himself to actually win the race. If Alonso had the pace to win the race why didn't he show us? That shows either he isn't a proper a racer or that Ferrari are the biggest joke in motor 'racing'.

    In the present day we have alot of very fast drivers but very few proper 'racers' in the F1 paddock.

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  • 304. At 8:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, oxted1 wrote:

    How about this as poetic justice?
    Massa has handed in his notice with Ferrari, last GP of the season, down to the wire, Alonso, Vettel, Hamilton all within a point of each other.
    Massa leading, Alonso second, Alonso dives up the inside of the last corner................................ and Massa takes him out!
    I'd pay good money to see that, wonder if Prost could give Massa a few pointers.

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  • 305. At 8:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, intrepid wrote:

    The look on Philipe Massa's face said it all for me,he was gutted.The atmosphere before,during and after the trophy presentation, again was a huge let down.Had Alonso known nothing about what went on,why was he not jumping for joy.
    Both drivers like McClaren should fight it out until it's clear only one can win,then and only then can team orders be issued.I love F1,but I have to say if I see that sort of thing again,I may have to stop watching F1

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  • 306. At 8:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, den2 wrote:

    Amazing how Ferrari can get just a $100,000 fine after bare faced lies, I suggest Mr Todt maybe still on their payroll.

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  • 307. At 8:00pm on 25 Jul 2010, rob199 wrote:

    A lot of poeple here are saying that Ferrari have got away with only a £65k fine but this isnlt over yet, they still have to deal with the WMSC hearing. Personally I think things have improved since Jean Todt's taken over at the FIA and if anything he'll be more likely to give Ferrari a harsh penalty to help demonstrate that he's not biased towards them.

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  • 308. At 8:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    If Ferrari are punished furthermore, then I just wonder how many races back they can go and point out a breach of the regulations committed, like Renault in Singapore...

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  • 309. At 8:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, dazmancumbria wrote:

    Hope the FIA ban them for 2 races to show, they shouldnt of been so silly !!!

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  • 310. At 8:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, deano wrote:

    I still hold out that lewis won the drivers title in his 1st year. anyone with half a brain knows that is the fair result.

    the only team order that should be allowed is to not crash into each other.

    i am looking forwad to then next time alonso or massa get a radio message stating that some driver currently behind him is going faster than either of them as clearly in their understanding this means you must let that driver pass.

    i hope massa now outpaces alonso in all the remining races and that becuse of this result today Farrari alonso and massa end up winning nothing.

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  • 311. At 8:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, stepearce wrote:

    As much as I'm not a fan of Alonso (I think he has too much attitude to demand any sort of respect but that's another argument), it just goes to show that you can change the driver under the cap, but its still got Ferrari on the cap - Schumacher/Barrichello, Schumacher/Irvine... I'm all for a little controversy and raised eyebrows, but I also want to see fair play, just like every other team has managed throughout this year. Strip them of the constructors points for the race result, it's the only fair recompense without affecting the drivers who, are after all, under contract.

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  • 312. At 8:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, HackneyRed wrote:

    If the BBC had any cojones it would complain to the FIA. If it says nothing it is complicit in a fraud. The fans have been cheated, an already tarnished sport/business is deeper in the mire. If Alonso was a true champion he would hang his head in shame tonight.

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  • 313. At 8:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, shaftedfan wrote:

    The team didn't give a direct order over the radio it's true, but does anyone believe that Massa would have let Alonso through out of an act of kindness. Anyone who thinks that is deluded. Massa must have been given team orders before the race and the coded message just instigated them. It's diabolical, Eddy Jordan got it right, it was theft as well as illegal, all the F1 fans had a race stolen from them and I believe Massa should be given the win, Alonso excluded and all the points from the race deducted from the team.

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  • 314. At 8:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, David wrote:

    Let's get this straight.

    If McClaren had done this they would have had the book thrown at them. Deducted points, massive fine, suspended from the championship, etc, etc!

    Ferrari on the hand blatantly break the rules and get a slap on the wrist. I've been fed up with way the rules have been bent and changed, always to Ferrari's advantage, for many, many years now. It makes me sick, and I long for the day there is a level playing field in F1.

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  • 315. At 8:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    Bit off track (Pardon the pun) but why haven't the stewards had a word about Vettel and his starts. Yet again he has swerved right across the track to drive across the 2nd place driver. One of these days he is going to cause an accident.
    You would think his team boss would say something as it keeps losing him places!!!

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  • 316. At 8:07pm on 25 Jul 2010, deanl wrote:

    Andrew's piece is a perfectly balanced comment to which there has been the predictable outpouring of outrage. Ferarri are the worst cheaters in the history of the sport (ahem, Mclaren 2007 & 2008 - proven liars), the sport is biased towards ferarri (explaining why the FIA leapt at the chance of giving Lewis a stop/go in Valencia and not-in-any-way taking far too long to do so) and Alonso has no honour and only wins dishonourably.
    I mean, seriously, people, get a grip and some perspective. There are people on here complaining that ferarri was too obvious. Mike Gascgoyne said the same on the forum. Come on, are you really saying you don't mind rules being broken just so long as a team is sneaky enough about doing it. You don't mind being lied to as long as you don't know you are being - now that is rediculous. And for those of you talking about Singapore and Piquet crashing - did I miss the evidence to show Alonso knew about it?!
    What Ferarri did was clumsy. They've been fined and the so-called 'sport' fans (who've never heard of rule bending in F1 before) are up in arms. Sorry to disappoint, but this will be nothing more than a small footnote in the story of the season, and neither Ferarri or Alonso will give a damn if they walk off with the championship.
    And Rob Smedley should be getting a very big pat on the back from Massa. What are the chances of Ferarri ever asking him to move over ever again thanks to Mr Smedley's extremely well-chosen words laying bare what was happening.

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  • 317. At 8:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, Hot-Lap wrote:

    Only one way to stop this happening. The driver needs to explain to the FIA the reasons why he slowed down and all data regarding the two cars needs to be handed over to the FIA, if a team is then found to have infringed the rules then the FIA needs to deduct points from the offending team construction title points, No team will put a drivers title points in front of the construction title. Millions are bet on the outcome of F1 races and the title fight so this could be regarded as race fixing.

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  • 318. At 8:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ceedeer wrote:

    How does Alonso always get away with his regular cheating - MacLaren/Ferrari, Singapore/Renault and now blatant rule bending. The stewards have made a big mistake and the FIA needs to grab this by the horns and disqualify both Ferraris.

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  • 319. At 8:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, Simon wrote:

    Last time I watch an F1 race until Ferrari is disqualified. This was a blatant disregard for the rules. When teams like Mclaren and Red Bull are letting their drivers race each other Ferrari are still fixing races.

    F1 has lost all credibility today and as long as Ferrari is still a part of it, it can never be a true sport.

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  • 320. At 8:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, groundhog44 wrote:

    Alonso's ego and Ferrari's blatant disregard for the rules are both out of control. A $100,000 fine which they can pay out of petty cash is a disgrace, there ought to be at least two more 0's on the end.

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  • 321. At 8:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, Muser wrote:

    I think I may have come up with a revolutionary new solution to this sort of problem - design the cars so that faster ones can (gasp!) overtake the slower ones. Alonso seemed to be faster for most of the race, if 'dirty air' wasn't a problem for the cars, this never would have happened.

    You may say I'm a dreamer, but I'm not the only one...

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  • 322. At 8:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, sandeep bhatia wrote:

    Seems like the only people defending today are spaniards and ferrari fans, which i guess i can understand, but the vast majority find today slightly offensive.

    Lots of rules in F1, teams will often brush up against them sometime knowingly, sometimes innocently. Today was blatant, disrespectful, and didn't brush up against a rule - no, ferrari looked at the rule, said sod it, we're breaking it anyway, and shown they have not learnt anything.

    Sure, they're not the only sinners in F1, but others get punished appropriately, and so should Ferrari. Those equating today with, for example, Hamilton and the safety car are deluded beyond measure.

    A bad day for the "sport"

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  • 323. At 8:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, Pat Shed wrote:

    //Just because Ferrari effectively asked Massa to let Alonso win, was that necessarily the wrong thing to do?//

    That depends on whether you view F1 as a sport or as a bit lf light entertainment for a Sunday afternoon.

    If it's light entertainment (which it seems it is), then it's not wrong: it gave the race an unexpected but scripted twist right at the end.

    If you want it to be a sport, then of course it's wrong: if it were a sport, then the very posing of the question would make you realise that it's wrong.

    It's as simple as that. If it's a sport, the competitors decide who wins, through their performance, and the result is not decided by a deus ex machina operating through a radio link.

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  • 324. At 8:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, sandeep bhatia wrote:

    @ClaireB97....very interesting point. not sure what precedent there is.

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  • 325. At 8:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dave C wrote:

    $100,000 Is Nothing to Ferrari, It is shamefull that they can blatantly disregard the rules. However one fact that can not be overlooked, they PROBABLY would still have come 1st & 2nd, but now we will never know if Sebastian could have gotten into the mix. After todays disgrace and obvious to all command, will the teams change tactic so it is not so easy to spot, I.e turn to fuel mix ?? as the order to let the team mate through?

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  • 326. At 8:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, saf312 wrote:

    Whatever people say about Schumacher's antics back in the days at least he consistently dominated his team mates in practice, qualifying and races with very few exceptions. Alonso is clearly failing to dominate his team mates at Ferrarri and McLaren, and all he ends up doing is moaning and crying like a little baby seeking attention the guy should be embarrassed.

    I guess the reason Ferrari asked Massa to let him pass was not to help his championship but because they could not bare the thought of having to listen to the little baby crying all week. We all do things to shut the kids up and this is what they did so in that case I guess it was good for the whole team even Massa

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  • 327. At 8:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, sbl21 wrote:

    Ferrai being fined is an admission by the stewards that Ferrai broke the rules, how come they only fined them a stupitdly low sum of money, they should be banned for 3 races, the same treatment that would have been dished out upon a different manufacturer for doing the same thing!! I say again, this 'RACE FIXING' this is something that is not allowed in any sport other than F1

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  • 328. At 8:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    I wish some people would get over this notion that Alonso is not liked because he isn't British.It started when he went to Mclaren and got upstaged by a rookie driver.He then claimed he was unfairly treated which was nonsense and ever since has acted like a spoilt child. Even in today's race he was whinging "this is ridiculous" because his team mate wouldn't give him his place(how about overtaking Fernando?). He has moaned all year round about bad luck, I haven't heard as much moaning from the rest of the entire grid. He should grow up and act like a professional,take some ownership for his performances and stop being so obsessed with Hamilton, who despite having an inferior car is leading the Championship.
    Alonso es patetico.

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  • 329. At 8:14pm on 25 Jul 2010, keith-w wrote:

    Ferrari have brought formula 1 to about the same level as professional wrestling - ok to watch but everyone knows it a FIX!

    @ espana_bonita
    if you break a rule, it's called CHEATING. no ifs or buts. Your beloved Ferrari have done motor racing a massive dis-service today. Time they were thrown out.

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  • 330. At 8:16pm on 25 Jul 2010, willowfan wrote:

    "And Rob Smedley should be getting a very big pat on the back from Massa. What are the chances of Ferarri ever asking him to move over ever again thanks to Mr Smedley's extremely well-chosen words laying bare what was happening."

    Rob was put in an awful position having to relay that "message" to his driver. His tone in conveying the team order was perfect in showing what he thought of the whole thing.

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  • 331. At 8:17pm on 25 Jul 2010, sandeep bhatia wrote:

    @Roger Allott...you wrote

    "What bugs me about today's fiasco is that if the $100,000 fine is appropriate, the stewards are saying that Ferrari, Alonso, Massa and Rob Smedley lied to them. The penalty for lying to stewards in 2010 should be exactly the same as that meted out to McLaren/Hamilton in Australia 2009"

    Excellent point, though i'm not sure what the ferrari folk said to the stewards, but your point about lenient treatment of Ferrari is correct.

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  • 332. At 8:17pm on 25 Jul 2010, luqa1906 wrote:

    Well we all now now what the cost of ignoring rule 39.1 is : $100,000.00. The precedent has been set. I'm sure in future when Mclaren or Red Bull want to drivers to change positions for whatever reason, they'll gladly pay the $100k with a smirk on their face.
    F1 the FIA and the fans have once again made to look like a total fool by the Red team.
    As for Schumi- I'm waiting for the day when Norbert or Ross ask him to let Nico through "for the team".
    The utter hypocrisy is mind boggling Austria $1.0mm fine for breaking a rule that didn't exist, and now $100k for breaking an existing rule.

    As for coded messages or not, Smedley could just as easily have said: "Stefano has left the building" and Massa would have know what he was contractually expected to do. This was a team order no question about it- the wording doesn't even come into it.

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  • 333. At 8:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, Enda wrote:

    I believe what happened is totally unfair and Ferrari shouldn't be aloud to control the outcome of the race. Unless this issued is dealed with, it is going to continue to happen in the future. I actually placed 10euro on Massa at 20/1 to win the race and it is totally unfair that anyone/team can decide on the outcome of the race. For example, it's like telling a soccor team to let in a gaol, so the don't top a group, it may benefit the team for some reason, but it's not right and isn't aloud happen!!! But it's aloud in F1.

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  • 334. At 8:18pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    Just one other observation, you know it's a total shambles of a sport when Todt can become President of the FIA when he has such recent links to Ferrari amid allegations of corrupt voting.

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  • 335. At 8:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, sbl21 wrote:

    Does anyone think that Jean Todt being head of the FIA now has any bearing on the stewards decision today? He was a Ferrai man though and through for a very long time, no????

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  • 336. At 8:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, piconico wrote:

    Holier than thou British commentators' hypocrisy aside, I fully agree with Michael Schumacher on all scores. That (1) the only target the driver must have in sight is the championship and the interests of the team; and (2) you must do what you need to do, but in a nice way - not with that awful attitude of Barrichello in Austria, meters from the checkered flag, or even like Filipe this Sunday.

    I personally dislike the little Spaniard from the land of bull-killers. He is a surly, self-centered prima donna, but if his win is what will secure the championship for Ferrari, then win he must - whatever it takes.

    GO MICHAEL ! The 3-legged donkey you are driving will grow its 4th leg at some stage or another.

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  • 337. At 8:20pm on 25 Jul 2010, fgburnaby wrote:

    There are only two ways F1 can avoid hidden team orders

    1. Allow them, and take the advertising hit from disgruntled sponsors pulling advertsiing rights to placate disgruntled fans.

    or

    2. Only allow each team one driver.

    The second won't happen, the first might but the likelyhood is nothing substantial will change.

    I've been interseted this year but I think I'll stop watching the rest of the season.

    License fee wasted again BBC.

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  • 338. At 8:21pm on 25 Jul 2010, aitchin wrote:

    The defence that f1 is a team sport is unacceptable. A team with two good drivers loses out in this scenario. Alonso gains points advantage because his team mate is not in the race for the driver's championship, that's plainly an individual gaining an advantage, not a team, the team did not get any more points. If the drivers championship is to have any credibility, then the best driver has to win, not the one with the uncompetitive team mate who donates points. I thought the point you made about raikkonen winning in 2008 was interesting, because in my eyes that devalues the achievement. Hamilton lost because alonso was competing fairly (in that example)

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  • 339. At 8:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stargazer wrote:

    It's curious that the same people who were spitting bile and suggesting that Lewis Hamilton be black-flagged for cheating a couple of races ago and went purple with rage at Webber's complaints, are now full of recrimination that anyone could acuse their own hero of doing anything underhand! Even the Spanish media are treating today's win with as close to embarassment as they get.

    Today has not been a good day for the people who see Alonso as a great but flawed driver. First he moaned that Vettel shut him out at the start and then suggested that an official complaint be made. Then he complained when his teammate overtook him on the road, having thought somehow that he had a divine right to first place. And finally tried to suggest that he had had a great win. When you are much faster, as he supposedly was, you wait for your chance and then overtake. I prefer to see him in an inferior car where he has to show his racing skills rather than when he is in the best car and seems to feel that racing is somehow beneath his dignity. Being a great driver is also about out-thinking your rivals and getting a superior result in inferior conditions.

    Sadly, controversy follows Fernando Alonso like flies follow a manure truck.

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  • 340. At 8:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, hendrixjoplin wrote:

    What happens to all the money that was bet on Massa.World wide Massa fans have lost lots of money,will the bookmakers give them their stake back.Match fixing in all other sports is banned.What about F1?

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  • 341. At 8:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, Skittzzy wrote:

    This is the first time ever, I have watched both the qualifying and the actual race of F1 and was left feeling absolutley gutted. I can understand that a team would want one driver to win more than the other especially if they need the points to win the championship. But surely not to the detriment of the alleged sport. The point of a sport is about competition, if you are going to favor one driver over the other then maybe they should rule that you only have 1 driver in a team. Overall it was just disappointing and I certainly won't waste anymore of my life watching a mafia style TV show dressed up as a sport. As I'm not hung up on any particular driver or team all I can say is that watching a driver roll over on orders from his team contradicts this being a team sport and as I mention before should perhaps just be a 1 driver team.

    I had to get this in here somewhere, there is no 'I' in 'Team' but I can definately make out a 'ME'.

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  • 342. At 8:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, ianani wrote:

    Dooh, I am so dumb. I thought the finish line was there to decide who was the fastest. It turns out the man coming second, two thirds through the race, was the fastest guy.
    Today, team orders robbed us of any chance of an exciting finish, a great fight between the first three drivers.
    Any decent sport gets more exciting the nearer you get to the finish. F1 team orders have the opposite effect.
    I wonder who would have won today's race. I wonder if I'll bother to watch F1 again.

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  • 343. At 8:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, William wrote:

    I felt sick about F1 after watching that disgraceful piece of cheating by the Ferrari team bosses, this is not a sport when the race is fixed. A total Sham, I hope they don't get away with this, Button thought there must have been a great passing move, no Jenson, Filipi who just slowed down and waved Alonso past..Hammer Ferrari !!

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  • 344. At 8:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, lewishamiltonforever wrote:

    A sad day for motor racing i hoped Austria 2002 would never happen again but it did and this shows why Lewis hamilton, Jenson button and co are better drivers as they do not have to get the team to interfere with the result into the hairpin on lap 20 or 21 Alonso had the chance to get through and past Massa but he went round the outside of the hairpin which a move you are never going to pull off For me Alonso is not the current best driver on the grid its either one of the two mclarens or one of the Red bull pair.

    Meanwhile Massa drove the One of the races of his life and his inlap when Alonso and Vettel had pitted was Brilliant.

    Also 2 other things Everyone was lapped except for the ferraris(of course)red bulls and the mclarens i think it shows how quick the three teams are.

    Mclaren got a good result today a valuable 22 points in The constructures championship and also for both Jenson and Lewis to get a fourth and fifth was as good as they could get.

    My race tip for next weekend in Hungary where he had the horrific accident on this day will definitely Be Felipe Massa for one reason as Rob Smedley said Felipe Massa is back as he proved me wrong.Ferrari are lucky they got only a peanuts fine of 65 grand. Remember in Valencia where everyone Ferrari was criticizing Mclaren and lewis hamilton for the SC issue now this a lot bigger i feel so sorry for Felipe massa and i will finish of with a bombshell FERRARI ARE CHEATERS!

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  • 345. At 8:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, MCCARTB wrote:

    Today's race was 'fixed'! But it is the rule that is at fault! This 'team orders' rule is garbage! Alphonso is being paid a LOT of money to drive! Massa is strictly a 'second' driver! So Ferarri WANT Alphonso to win, he is this years 'poster-boy'! Massa is the 'no threat backup'! Just scrap the rule and go back to having team orders, and if the other guy doesn't like it-he is free to go somewhere else!
    Graham Hill ALWAYS backed up Jim Clark!
    Francois Cevert ALWAYS backed up Jackie Stewart!
    Ruben Barrichello ALWAYS backed Michael Schumacher!
    There ALLWAYS has been, and ALWAYS will be a #1 and #2 driver!
    The only time there is a problem is when you have two #1 drivers on the same team-Senna and Prost!

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  • 346. At 8:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, bluechicane wrote:

    I've not read all the posts so don't know if it's already been mentioned but if as was quoted to Massa "Alonso is quicker than you" why didn't he just pass him anyway then???

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  • 347. At 8:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, 4mula1rulesok wrote:

    Hmm... what if Ferrari had placed a bet on Alonso winning?

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  • 348. At 8:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, sbl21 wrote:

    WELL SAID 340 hendrixjoplin

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  • 349. At 8:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dave Ryan wrote:

    I must confess I could not disagree more with DC and MB's assessment of the situation. Formula One is not a team sport in the same way as football - football for one doesn't have a "players' championship", which F1 clearly does, and while the drivers are racing for a team ultimately they are also racing for themselves. The drivers' championship predates the constructors' by about eight seasons (1950 versus 1958), so claiming that team orders have always been part of F1 is just completely inaccurate. I also dispute the comparison with the "gentlemen's agreements" in the 1950s and 1960s - for one those were agreed by drivers without any influence from the team, for another sharing cars was actually permitted by the rules (unlike today's ban on team orders), and finally it was motivated by self-interest for both drivers rather than putting one above the other. They both got half the points in those circumstances. The comparison with today's incident is like chalk and cheese.

    Brazil 2007 was also, contrary to the assertion in the article, not as blatant a case of team orders - I have no doubt that Felipe was asked to assist Kimi, but Kimi had to set some very quick laps before his pit stop to get out ahead. That is completely different to being handed the win on a plate. The fact that Kimi actually had to dig deep and set a string of fastest laps to get the victory is why it did not attract such furore.

    As has been said above, the £100,000 fine sets a dangerous precedent as that is frankly pocket change for most F1 teams. I can only hope the WMSC takes a harder line on this and spares F1 another embarrassment like what happened today. I can honestly say I have not felt this disgusted since Indy 2005 and Austria 2002.

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  • 350. At 8:28pm on 25 Jul 2010, Pogarooney wrote:

    The final race classification makes fools of F1 fans and a total mockery of the sporting regulations.
    I find it hard to accept that a mere $100,000 / £65,000 fine is an appropriate amount to prevent a repeat occurrence. Come on – that fine is significantly less than the cheapest Ferrari road car! That’s like fining Rooney the cost of a Big Mac...
    However, despite my anger about the blatant manipulation of the race, I am most upset for Felipe – and the realisation that he will never be allowed to finish in front of Alonso.


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  • 351. At 8:28pm on 25 Jul 2010, imanol wrote:

    I am sure that Maclaren and Red Bull would prefer Massa to win and collect the points, so Domenicalli did well. It is so simple. they are competing against Red Bull and Mc.
    Of course you would have enjoyed Massa,Alonso and Vettel being penalized with a drive through as usual, allowing a new fair and deserved victory of Hamilton. You are a joke.

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  • 352. At 8:29pm on 25 Jul 2010, The_Gunslinger wrote:

    The drivers championship is becoming a farce, if it is not already one, the only penalty that seems fitting now is that Ferrari have this weekends constructors points stripped, simple as that

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  • 353. At 8:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, Zombie666 wrote:

    In reply to #82, who was on pole? alonso wasn't "way ahead" of massa, he was on second spot, one in front of massa, and behind him after the first corner. the only person to benefit from this example of race fixing is alonso, ferrari would have had the same amount of points if massa had won ahead of alonso. also massa was still mathematically in contention for the drivers title.

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  • 354. At 8:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, Technospeak wrote:

    moan, moan, moan! Most British F1 fans are so quick to have a go at Ferrari and FA in particular at every occasion but develop memory and sensory loss if its Button or Hamilton. I adore Massa and was sad to see him give up his win but he is employed by Ferrari to further their aims not for his own aggrandizement. Its the same as in any other organization. If your bosses thought the best thing for the organization was for you to be shoved aside so some other bloke can take your position for the good of the organization, you probably wouldn't have a lot of recourse other than leaving to go elsewhere. Same thing my friends... Ferrari are putting a lot of money into the Championship and have thousands of people working so they can win both the constructors and WDC. All their decisions must be in aid of furthering both aims and all their employees must understand that as well. All this jive about racing and fans being disgusted is just so much prattle.

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  • 355. At 8:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, hendrixjoplin wrote:

    Alonso was allowed to pass Massa so the "team" could get a 1,2 in the race.Sorry but if Massa had won and Alonso came second,would that have not been a 1,2.If Alonso was so much quicker all he had to do was "overtake" nasty word for the red team.

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  • 356. At 8:31pm on 25 Jul 2010, Daerg Doom wrote:

    Ferrari broke the rule, there is no doubt about that, hence the fine. The fine of course is a joke. There is nothing to debate about whether the rule was broken or not. Unlike 2002, there is a rule in place forbidding teams to directly affect the race order, in 2002 no such rule existed. The Red Bull situation at Silverstone was not in the race, therefore there was no rule breach. Do I agree with the rule? Probably not, F1 is a team sport, and while it is contested by teams of more than 2 drivers then that will be the case, it was not needed until a particular team flagrantly broke the etiquette of the sport that such a rule was deemed necessary.

    What I find ridiculous is the shambolic way Ferrari went about things, the Team Principle does not even have the guts to do the dirty work but instead gets his paid employees to do it for him.

    What I find completely distasteful is the lies, the deceit, the Ferrari chiefs were trying to deny anything had happened, when the whole world had watched events unravel on screen. Alonso, tried to tell us he thought Massa missed a gear. People are not stupid. If you are trying to fix the result at least try to be honest, respectful, humble even, don't lie.

    It has been refreshing for a couple of seasons with people being a bit more open and honest, the post Schumacher/Ferrari days, the post Flavio days and the post Ron Dennis days, sadly today's events returned F1 to the bad old days of flagrant cheating and lies. Lets just hope that out of all this we get a worthy champion, and as long as that is a driver in a Red Bull or a McLaren that will be fine by me.

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  • 357. At 8:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stargazer wrote:

    Comment on Spanish National Radio (i.e. Spanish equivalent of the BBC) a few moments ago:

    "Ferrari are a disaster. Even when they win the can't manage to do it right. All they have managed today is to open a gaping wound in the team."

    Says it all, really.

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  • 358. At 8:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, pau_dc wrote:

    I did not like what I saw today but, at the end of the day, this was an issue between Ferrari drivers and noone else. When Lewis passed the SC in Valencia he did seriously change the result of the race, for himself and for others. Same thing when he ran out of fuel after qualifying in Canada (running with less weight than competitors). The penalties he was given were laughable. I did not see any demotions or 10 position penalties in the grid (or a black flag in Valencia would have been appropiate).

    But if we need to investigate team orders, then let's investigate the "saving fuel" orders by McLaren in Turkey and today as well "you don't have enough fuel, yes you do have enough fuel" ....

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  • 359. At 8:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, RocketToeRonaldo wrote:

    I agree with you Andrew.

    Also, what about in China 2008 when Raikkonen let Massa past to finish second. That was a clear team order when Raikkonen was by far the quicker driver.

    No one complained about that!

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  • 360. At 8:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, lewishamiltonforever wrote:

    Remember www.twitter.com/f12010bbc

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  • 361. At 8:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, CarolynJ wrote:

    DC and MB said that team orders have always been applied and so felt that this made what Ferrari did, understandable, if not excusable. What they both chose to overlook was the fact that whether it's a good or bad rule is totally irrelevant to this case: today was a blatant flagrance of the current rules and hence should be punished; end of story. (DC's allusion to past 'gentlemen racers' was simply ludicrous.)
    As F1 fans, we're getting very tired of Alonso's petulance. We're also very tired of being prevented from seeing wheel to wheel passing -er...RACING..! Drivers racing one another should not be stopped or prevented on anything other than safety grounds: we all pay a great deal of money to see drivers race one another, not to see one driver gifted places or getting his way by throwing a tantrum and flouting rules, as, let's not forget, he did at the last race by not relinquishing his place to Kubica.
    Once again, Ferrari has got off very lightly and Alonso has benefitted unfairly (reminds you of the old Ferrari/Schumacher days doesn't it..?) How Alonso can feel good about winning through cheating, beats me. Also, what message does this send out, generally - it's OK to cheat/break rules? it's OK to cheat your way to the top - 'because I'm not a good enough driver to do it for myself'..?!

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  • 362. At 8:35pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ferrari640fan wrote:

    Although I am a Ferrari fan I am disgusted how the result was handle by the team.

    However, I just don't see anyway around this problem. It is very obvious to most people that there were team orders but having watched the F1 Forum every member of the Ferrari team had an answer to every question so how can the FIA prove that there were team orders?

    Personally, I think there should be team orders and that each team should have no. 1 and no. 2 driver so that things are kept out in the open. Since the introduction of the rule banning team orders in 2003 everything is now done in an underhanded way, which puts the sport in a negative light.

    I agree with David Coulthard the rule is 'unworkable'. Team orders cannot be policed, proven or punished and so there is no point having it.

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  • 363. At 8:36pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stargazer wrote:

    "or a black flag in Valencia would have been appropiate"

    How about a ritual flogging instead? Or perhaps the death penalty?

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  • 364. At 8:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, William wrote:

    317 Agree, this is a clear case, FIA should have little trouble in spotting this clear rule bender when Massa slowed down, which in effect FIXED the race result, but for Ferrari to LIE about it is worse than anthing, the cheats should be punished, but not Massa he was following team orders..

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  • 365. At 8:40pm on 25 Jul 2010, lewishamiltonforever wrote:

    359. At 8:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, RocketToeRonaldo wrote:
    I agree with you Andrew.

    Also, what about in China 2008 when Raikkonen let Massa past to finish second. That was a clear team order when Raikkonen was by far the quicker driver.

    No one complained about that!


    ----------------------------------------------------------------------

    If you didn`t know that was to help Massa win the championship and to take it to the wire in Brazil who knows if Massa was third then Hamilton in Brazil would have just needed a 7th i believe even if Massa won in Brazil and that would not have made a dramatic finish which got everyone wondering who was world champion

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  • 366. At 8:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, Joe G wrote:

    Seeing as many are so upset about this and the rest don't see the issue, I have a solution that will keep both parties happy.

    First you have the following facts...

    1/ Ferrari (in code) ordered Massa to let Alonso win

    2/ Point 1 cannot be catagorically proven unless one of the Ferrari team admits this

    3/ If point 1 COULD be catagorically proven then Ferrari would be liable for punishment that would make their actions today not worth the consequence. I.e a points deduction, truly massive fine or ban of some kind. But as it stands, it can't.


    If you agree on the above then the simple solution is as follows.

    Get Massa, Alonso and Domenicali to answer formally on the record to the FIA a variation of the simple question "Did you order Massa to let Alonso win". Presumably all three say no and deny this.

    You then simply wait for the inevitbale point when one driver or team member either leaves the team or does an interview at some point where it's admitted and then you have the effective purjury on file and dish out you nice, hefty retrospective punishment.

    So Ferrari half way through the 2012 season or such like suddenly find themselves docked 20, 30 or 40 points, or £Xmillion or are banned for a race etc.

    Justice done

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  • 367. At 8:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, dazmancumbria wrote:

    I ve been reading some of the post and i think the race result should stand i thinnk, BUT they should take action against the team and ban them for 2 races hence, to teach them and otherS, cheaters never win !!

    Plus it would be great to see Alonso sitting watching the race from the pit lane !!!! :)

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  • 368. At 8:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, super_hype wrote:

    The quotes Massa and Alonso are coming out with now are absolutely classic. Gearbox problem? Surprised to see him let you through? As long as the rules stand they have to be obeyed, otherwise why not just ignore them altogether and start nobbling the other teams' drivers too. All this tit-for-tat gibberish between McLaren and Ferrari fanboys is pathetic too, grow up. The sport is boring enough as it is without fixed results.

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  • 369. At 8:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

    seems like today we found out that Todt is still on the Ferrari payroll to the tune of 100k a race. He must be as disgusted as anyone. He's worth more than 100k, surely? Don't be surprised if the stewards face the sack for this.

    The only difference is that this figure has become public, something Todt probably won't be happy about. Unless this is some sort of bonus? And in which case, he should have taken up banking.

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  • 370. At 8:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, thef1pumphouse wrote:

    No real point in referring the Ferrari team orders to the FIA. They will probably do nothing, after all it has been said, in the past, that the F, in FIA, stands for Ferrari. Felipe deserves better than this.

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  • 371. At 8:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, chris_77 wrote:

    Joe G- you obviously didn't see the interview with Stefano Domenicali after the race did you! He actually admitted it (as if he needed to after the radio instructions by Smedley)

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  • 372. At 8:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, Simon G Gibson wrote:

    Yet again we have the arrogance of Ferrari thinking that they are above the regulations... which were specifically set by the FIA to show respect to the sport of motor RACING... and it's fans worldwide....the clue is in the name. The passing manoeuvre that Alonso pulled off required absolutely no driving skill whatsoever, and this is the key point from the fans standpoint... we want to see skilled driving determining the result of the race and not rigged outcomes.

    It may well be in the interests of the teams to want team orders, but it is not in the interest of the sport or the fans. Without the fans support and the subsequent television money, F1 would not exist, and all of the teams and the FIA would do well to remember that. As EJ put it, we are all paying to see a RACE, and to celebrate the incredible skills of the worlds best drivers... WE DO NOT WANT TO SEE A RIGGED RESULT.

    Without wishing to sound cynical I would also venture to suggest that Ferrari knew full well that they would get what is to them a paltry fine and that the result would stand. We could also confidently predict that if the situation is reversed later on in the season and one of the other teams does this to Ferrari's disadvantage they will be the first to complain about it!

    Yet again the image of F1 loses. The FIA are weak in only issuing a fine, the result should have stood but all driver and team points should have been declared null and void.

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  • 373. At 8:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, Davidhal wrote:

    It is simple. We watch F1 because it is a race. It is about drivers trying to win. Supposing Chubby Chandler sent a text to one of his players at the Open last week to say drop a few shots so Westwood could win. I turned off after Massa let Alonso through. It all became pointless. And if this is allowed then F1 will become pointless.

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  • 374. At 8:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Daviddaiant wrote:

    Absolutely discusting. Im not surprised that Ferrari have cheated, Im also not surprised that Alonso cheated either (which he did with the radio comment).

    Anybody get the feeling that Alonso can win races by himself, remember his hatred of Hamilton (for winning races), the Singapore Incident (where a team mate crashed to hand him the win) and now this.

    How do Ferrari get away with a fine of only $100,000 for race fixing, when Juventus and other Italian teams get fined, points docked and releation from their championship. I know F1 isn't football, but maybe something can be learned.

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  • 375. At 8:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Hot-Lap wrote:

    Lewis Hamilton would never have let Alonso pass regardless of team orders, that is why Alonso hated his time at McLaren, he thinks he is the number one driver and the team should be built around him, it is plain for everybody to see now.

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  • 376. At 8:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Awusi40 wrote:

    Vergogna! Vergogna! Vergogna! Shame! Shame! Shame!
    We have had team orders over the years which we were all appalled by and complained about. You would think the teams, the FIA and all involved would show some respect to the spectators by now and not make it so blatantly obvious if they feel they need to give team orders. It was interesting to see that the crowd were not jubilating either. That says it all!!!
    And what about the sponsors? If I were Massa's sponsor, I would ask for my money back from Ferrari.

    And as for Alonso as a worthy champion... I have lost all respect for him. I commend McClaren for not giving in to his childish rants during his time with Hamilton. He will feel at home at Ferrari obviously.
    Massa may not be performing this season, but taking his victory from him this way, when the team's results would not have changed says it all.

    $100.000 fine doesn't cut it. If it's too harsh to take the points away from them, then the positions should be reversed, Massa 1, Alonso 2. That should teach the teams and also show that the FIA will protect the drivers too, if their own teams let them down.

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  • 377. At 8:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, nunes1986 wrote:

    Although I'm a staunch supporter of nearly everything that Eddie Jordan utters, I find myself partly agreeing with David Coulthard on this occassion. While many outside of Ferrari agree that Ferrari exhibited team orders in a thinly-veiled manner, should there, in reality, be an investigation into rhe purpose, effect and position of Article 39.1 of the Sporting Regulations?

    After Austria-gate (which hurt for Barrichello fans like myself and all other types of F1 fan alike), the FIA had to be seen to clamp down on a blatant manipulation of the race result as well as the debacle on the podium where Schumacher coerced Rubens into taking the top stop when he had won the race. What followed was a $1,000,000 fine for Ferrari and the eventual addition of Article 39.1 to the Sporting Regulations; an addition that had critics arguing that teams would simple code messages to drivers and then argue about the semantics of their messages in future circumstances. I'm surprised it has taken 8 years for this situation to arise again and the cynical F1 supporter in me is unsurprised that it is Ferrari who have instigated this issue to rise.

    What good does it do in dragging up previous evidence of team orders either before or after the introduction of Article 39.1? I know Martin brought up the Brazil 2007 incident, but we could argue constantly about the similarities and differences between that instance where Massa had explicitly expressed his desire to assist Kimi's efforts to win the championship and this instance where he was barely willing to even speak to his team-mate, but does this any other incident of blatant or latant team orders detract from the nature of Article 39.1?

    The Article attempts to ban team orders which manipulate a race result. However, to paraphrase Coulthard, any team that does not say they use team orders is lying. And what do Ferrari do except improvise their claims of innocence as the post-race interviews carry on?

    It is not hard to pick apart the Italian team's spin on events. For a start, why would Massa be so begrudging at the end of the race and in interview if he had accepted before the start of the race that he would let Alonso through for the sake of his team-mate's championship campaign? Secondly, if Rob was constantly letting him know about events behind him, isn't it Rob's position to encourage his driver to push on? I mean, rather than ask for clarification that Felipe understood the statement "Fernando is quicker than you"? I imagine Felipe's English is of a standard where he understands the basic meaning of having an F1 car in hot pursuit of your position.

    Ferrari just do not have a leg to stand on in their efforts to maintain their innocence. If they were whither than white, would they not appeal against their fine? The matter now lies with the FIA and I hope what will be discussed is not only Ferrari's pitiful attempts to masquerade their innocence, but, most importantly, the nature of the Article,

    If we're going to have this rule in the sport, then, as shambolic as it is, the FIA cannot be surprised at the half-hearted attempts of Ferrari and their employees to cover up any evidence that they may have broken the rules. As I've already mentioned, critics from the start of the Article's introduction knew that this situation would arise. I can't blame Ferrari for putting their team first, but I cannot condone their pale, luke-warm efforts to play the innocent party.

    Instead, we should have clarity on the rule; the circumstances which it covers must be clear for teams and fans in order to enjoy every race on the calendar. Teams have sought clarification from the FIA on all manners of rules this season; be it the safety car procedure at the end of the race or the legality of adjustable ride height devices. On behalf of the angry F1 fans, I implore the FIA to give us clarification on Article 39.1. Does today's incident not confirm the obvious fact that the teams, the fans and, ultimately, the sport need it?

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  • 378. At 8:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ads_21 wrote:

    Andrew, Thank you so much. Its great to see when so many journalists are losing their head and going apoplectic about the situation you have been able to give us such a clearly thought through and reasonable analysis. Excellent article

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  • 379. At 8:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, moore148 wrote:

    want a travesty.just watch f1,as usual ferrari get away with flouting the rules,then get away with a £65000 fine.bet they were rubbing there hands after the stewards enquiry.what should have happened was the fine, and alonso stripped of his win.if is a race then race don,t be letting your team mate pass even if it is a team order.if you do then at least the team and the driver should have the balls to admit it

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  • 380. At 8:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, john hall wrote:

    I think Alonso joining Ferrari is the worst thing that could have happened to F1. The guy just can't contain himself. He's like a spoiled kid.

    Ferrari have just gone and bought him a win to keep him happy (not that they didn't have their own agenda to give their "leading driver" help). The guy is always going to put the FIA in uncomfortable situations and we all know that the FIA have a soft spot for Ferrari. This makes F1 one big joke, where the rules shift and change around Alonso.

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  • 381. At 8:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, dennisp99 wrote:

    The logic in the blog is flawed in arguing that today's cheating improves competition. As others have pointed out, if Massa had led a Ferrari 1,2, he would have been less than a win behind Alonso. No-one would have argued that 9 points difference at halfway last season was enough to say definitively who was the better bet for the title. So instead of our blogger's elation at a 5 way race, without today's cheating, he could have had a 6 way race.
    To me, the comparison with two horses from the same stable is striking. Imagine the furore if one horse, leading by a distance, eased up in the final furlong to let his stablemate pass.
    The logical conclusion of the argument that F1 is a team game is that the rules should be changed so that each team nominates its number one driver at the start of the season and he gets the points from whichever of the two drivers scores more. No more nonsense of letting a teammate pass. Let Massa win but give his points to Alonso. Because that's effectively what happened today. But as that's pretty much the same as the constructors' championship, then let's just ditch the drivers' championship altogether. What nonsense.
    What irritates me about the attitude of the blog writer and the tv commentators is the superior attitude that this is some sort of private club to which spectators are invited. No-one seems to care that what the public want to see is genuine racing even between team mates.

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  • 382. At 8:58pm on 25 Jul 2010, Carlonso wrote:

    Hear hear for another spot on observation of events Andrew!
    How would Massa winning the race actually aid Ferrari in its fight for the championship?
    The rule banning team orders is a farce and should be scrapped immediately, for it does nothing but make fools out of F1 and its fans.
    Nice to see the ignorant lot here banging on the Alonso wagon yet again...

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  • 383. At 8:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, nunes1986 wrote:

    Besides the the implications of Article 39.1, does it not damage Alonso's reputation within future teams? With Briatore gone, the fractured relationship with Hamilton and McLaren in 2007, Eddie Jordan's comments about a "petulant Spaniard" and his protests to Ferrari during the race about the situation being "ridiculous" does this finally dent Alonso's future in other successful teams in F1. Surely all this situation does is add to his growing reputation as a fiery character who is wholly difficult for teams to manage/handle? Will his F1 career, similar to Raikkonen's short-lived career, end with Ferrari?

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  • 384. At 8:59pm on 25 Jul 2010, petergrimsdale wrote:

    There's always an issue of with Alonso. A clean win eludes him time and again. Massa moving over and then some flannel pr to cover the truth is such an insult to those of us who bother to watch and follow their frequently boring contests. Thank god for Mark Webber who always cuts through the crap with his own brand of tell-it-like-it-is. He's what keeps me watching - albeit through the brilliant online BBC service. My F1 TV- watching days are so over.

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  • 385. At 9:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, Bigwhitedog wrote:

    Alonso

    I saw it I wanted it
    Threw a Tantrum
    Got It

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  • 386. At 9:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, A1GP wrote:

    For me this just shows how the aims of the sport have become blurred. schumi said that we need to remember that F1 is a team sport, where the goals of the team are above those of the drivers, which may be right, to an extent, but since the sport relies to a large extent on viewer revenue, the teams must realise that they are, like it or not being watched by, as Eddie J pointed out, an increasingly knowledgeable audience. therefore if they wish to control race results, either hold the races in a closed door scenario(and lose huge revenues) or accept that to manufacture a result is not what, im sure the majority of people want, and let their drivers battle for position.

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  • 387. At 9:01pm on 25 Jul 2010, TDaygo wrote:

    Is F1 being run by the rules or not? Ferrari, renowned for bending the rules get a measly 1 thousand dollar fine for putting an end to what could have been a great battle of skills. We the fans suffer as a result.
    Is F1 drawing closer and closer to an expensive WWF wrestling match when you know who will eventually win. FIA and in particular ex Ferrari John Todt please take on board you made the rules. BAN FERRARI FROM THE RESULT. No one else will then do the same otherwise it's a free for all.

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  • 388. At 9:02pm on 25 Jul 2010, ljhgvoutdytd wrote:

    Actually, the stewards ruled that Ferrari did order Massa to let Alonso win.

    But its not the initial rule breach that's the problem any more.

    Andrew Benson ought to asking a more searching question: What's the punishment for misleading stewards? (ask mclaren).

    The stewards decision tells us that they think massa and ferrari were trying to mislead the stewards.

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  • 389. At 9:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, piconico wrote:

    fgburnaby wrote:

    There are only two ways F1 can avoid hidden team orders

    1. Allow them, and take the advertising hit from disgruntled sponsors pulling advertsiing rights to placate disgruntled fans.

    or

    2. Only allow each team one driver.

    There is a No. 3 - Keep team orders but, employ a top #1 driver and a good but less talented #2.

    Avoid a full-house of super-stars who will be more focused on destroying each other than winning championships for their employer. MS/Barrichello team is a good example. Rubens was a good second choice before he joined MS, whilst he was with MS and after MS.

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  • 390. At 9:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, platinumtone wrote:

    The most relevant point made hours ago by Eddie Jordan was that the fans had been cheated of a proper race. Full marks to the BBC team for not backing off the honest comment. No marks to Ferrari & Alonso for forgetting once more that this is supposed to be Motor RACING.

    I was just starting to feel that F1 had got back to being exciting and engaging - no surprise that Ferrari have set that back again. Why do we need them?

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  • 391. At 9:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ferrari_Cheaters wrote:

    I dont think Massa shoud be slated too much for this, it is all Ferraris fault. OK, Team orders are outlawed, but Massa is not daft - the telemetry from his car will clearly show he eased off to allow Alonso past (simply following orders).

    He would never bite the hand that feeds him (nor would I). Doesn't mean it's right though!

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  • 392. At 9:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, marbbc wrote:

    Hey guys, Vettel said it; Would it be better if they had crached into eachother? Alonso was faster (nobody doubts that) and Massa was right to let him overtake. This would have happened one way or another. There was no need to risk their positions. Ferrari was the best team this weekend and it will be the best next weekend as well. The rest of the teams can work hard to reach Ferrari's performance. Hamilton was wrong when he overtook the SC and he only got a slap on the wrist. No need to be so strict with Ferrari now. Alonso is many points ahead of Massa and any one team would have done the same thing. If they were neck and neck in terms of points there would probably be no interference but in this case this was the right thing to do. This is F1 and that's why everyone loves it!

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  • 393. At 9:05pm on 25 Jul 2010, pingpong1804 wrote:

    I disagree with you saying massa let raikkonen through to win the championship. At the time, Kimi ran a longer fuel stint which allowed him to push and overtake massa once he completed his pitstop...

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  • 394. At 9:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, brillo wrote:

    People at the racetrack pay good money to watch a race , not a fixed event , What Happened today after many years watching this sport and loving it has made me think whats the point now ? ... If Alonso was faster then he should have raced for the win , a fine is no good , what if at the end of the season Alonso now wins the championship by a point or two ? .. is that fair on the drivers that race? Both cars and drivers should have lost there points for that race at the very least and the team its constructor points , Fia needs to clean F1 up or have teams racing with only one driver !

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  • 395. At 9:08pm on 25 Jul 2010, Angus wrote:

    I was pleased that FIA made a clear rule after 2002. This makes watching F1 no different to watching WWW wrestling. It leaves be with the same feeling as watching Tour de France a few years ago - I give up my time to watch what I think is a sport only to find the result is artifical. Why should I continue watching?

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  • 396. At 9:09pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    If F1 is such a team sport why don't we remember fondly who wins the constructor's championship!
    In all the websites it's regarded as the 2nd tier result.
    Everybody wants to know who's winning the driver's championship!!
    If Massa had got his deserved win today we would have had a possile six drive fight for the title, since when has F1 had that much excitement.
    But today Ferrari made it a 5 driver shootout with their driver having a great advantage as his temamate will always pull over for him to get ahead.
    Shame on the Prancing Horse for treating everbody like asses!!

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  • 397. At 9:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, don dada wrote:

    what do you expect with the biggest bank in Spain banco santander spending money on Ferrari, on a circuit sposored by the bank, combine with a European driver Alonso and the chairman of the bank present there sum all this up and you have a recipe for cheating. if only petrobras was behind Masa the result would have been different. It was a business decision it makes economic sense for Alonso to win and for massa to be second.

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  • 398. At 9:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, romanchariot wrote:

    Simple solution to the problem, "only one car and driver per team", it might force them to be more reliable also, my brother raced F1 in the sixties as a privateer, did his on mechanic-ing also!

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  • 399. At 9:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, El_Barbero wrote:

    Well Andrew your question really is did Ferrari do anything wrong. Sadly if you don't know the answer to that you have no love affair with F1, as you claim to do, you are just another hack making a living. Get a grip man, grow a pair and ask the difficult questions of the right people.

    I have been an avid motorsport fan for 50 years now. I have been a competitor both as a paid driver and with my own outfit. I can understand the 'why' there can be the need for team orders in the grand scheme of things. But in this case there was no need, never mind being specifically against the rules (39.1).

    The rules are there, and they will always be bent as far as possible, that is the nature of competetive people. What has happened today is a clear breach of those rules... hence the fine. What you appear to miss fine or no fine is that there is no loss of points for any party. Not to mention that this is the second consecutive GP with clear violations by the same team.

    Both drivers should have lost thier points as should the team as they were, all, equally complicit in altering the race result.

    It was clear that although Alonso had the pace to catch Massa it was not sufficiently more to make the pass stick, if you remember this had already occured. The best of my recolection is that Alonso was 0.1 sec faster per lap, that is not a large enough differential.

    The bottom line, sadly for me, is that this is one 'fix' too many.

    We all have our views as to what would improve F1, so here are a few ideas for you to pass along to Bernie.

    1. Remove ALL radio communiction with the car, except four instructions
    from race control. Those being a)pace car out this lap. b)full course yellow c) red flag. d) black flag.

    2. Any and all adjustments to the car to be done in pit lane with the engine stopped.

    4. Blue flag to mean there is a faster car approaching.

    3. Any breach of the regulations, as written at the time, carries the penalty of, loss of all points for all parties ie both drivers and the team. Along with loss of qualifying position for the next GP and whatever penalty the Stewards decide at the time. This to apply to all penalties not decided during the race.

    Untill at least the first two of these ideas have beem implemented F1 has lost another viewer.


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  • 400. At 9:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfemo wrote:

    358. At 8:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, pau_dc wrote:
    I did not like what I saw today but, at the end of the day, this was an issue between Ferrari drivers and noone else. When Lewis passed the SC in Valencia he did seriously change the result of the race, for himself and for others. Same thing when he ran out of fuel after qualifying in Canada (running with less weight than competitors). The penalties he was given were laughable. I did not see any demotions or 10 position penalties in the grid (or a black flag in Valencia would have been appropiate).

    But if we need to investigate team orders, then let's investigate the "saving fuel" orders by McLaren in Turkey and today as well "you don't have enough fuel, yes you do have enough fuel" ....

    I totally agree with you. This about "fuel" was smelly.
    Here people against Alonso must be really afraid of him and with good judgement I'm afraid.
    If Massa past Alonso, then wouldn't be a big issue.
    It's the same like in the days of MS. He was a best driver and he didn't need to prove anything to the team that he was a asset.

    Don't forget that 9 out of 20 current drivers think Alonso is the best active driver out there now, and Domenicalli gave Alonso much better marks than Massa.
    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator](http://www.planet-f1.com/news/3213/6269395/-Senna-s-the-best-Nico-s-the-prettiest-http://www.planet-f1.com/news/3213/6269395/-Senna-s-the-best-Nico-s-the-prettiest-)

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  • 401. At 9:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, shepperton_blue wrote:

    Rob Smedley was clearly at odds with the team's decision today. I hope he will tender his resignation from Ferrari tomorrow morning. He wouldn't be unemployed for long.

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  • 402. At 9:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tim Hawkins wrote:

    is not a team taking off an update from one driver and giving it to another not a case of team orders? In this case it didn't effect the outcome of the race but if vettel had beat webber what would the fia do - fine them £100k I don't think so!

    Tactically Ferrari did the right thing. Vettels move of the line was a bit aggressive and Alonso was unlucky to find himself stuck behind Massa. Better race by Massa but Alonso was still faster than him in the race and he's a mile ahead of him in the championship.

    Sure we'll hear lots in the coming weeks but F1 and the fia hold themselves to complete redicule by the way they right the rules so they can be interpreted differently.

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  • 403. At 9:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, Gonk wrote:

    Dirty dirty ferrari!!! They shouldn't have received a fine, that won't hurt them, they can afford fines. What should have happened was to disqualify Alonso and thus ensuring massa - the true winner - how can Alonso be classed as a champion when he gets his wins by cheating!!!

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  • 404. At 9:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, diego1982 wrote:

    Massa has been out of sorts so far this season because of the accident, tyre issues, and some genuine bad luck (such as Alonso taking him out on lap 1 at Silverstone) but found his form finally and proved beyond any doubt that he can be more than a match for Alonso.

    If that's the way Ferrari are going to play it they may well be asking Massa to let Alonso through quite a few more times. That's when there'll be the most disgust!

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  • 405. At 9:15pm on 25 Jul 2010, cheadle wrote:

    How can a team get away with this-clear breach of rules and a fine that they will just laugh at....1 more reason to call f1 a joke and im a big fan ...usually.
    2 hrs watching a fix.

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  • 406. At 9:16pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sir_Dion wrote:

    Quite astounded by the naivety of some on here. Team orders have never gone away so why wait for today to start griping when there has been plenty of evidence of team orders in the past?(Brazil 07, Hockenhiem 08 per the author) Contrary to what some of you think Brazil 07 was NOT much different in that the way I see it today, Massa was nearly 80 points behind in the championships so Ferrari have done what they needed to do to maximise their chances of winning the WDC. Whether they would've done it even if Felipe was a lot closer in the WDC is a debate for another day.
    This year I was also excited at the prospect of Jenson and Lewis going toe to toe in the same machinery but how many times have we seen one coasting behind the other after being told to "manage their tyres to the end" or "conserving their fuels" (let's ignore the mis-communication overtakes in Turkey for now)? Even though positions were not changed, these are still TEAM ORDERS and have deprived us of wheel to wheel action between the 2 most recent World Champions and funnily enough I don't hear the same moaners calling them cheats and being disgusted and so and so.. the same people who lack any in depth understanding of the fact that F1 is a season-long championship and not just a series of indepedent Grand Prix's.
    The only things I find suspect today are:
    1)The team order rule itself - Totally unenforceable so why bother having it? As the author said, Ferrari did not technically break the rules. It was clear as daylight yes but factually speaking, Massa was simply told Alonso was faster than him.
    2) Brundle was right as to why the stewards did not raise notification of an investigation earlier than they did, seemingly reacting to the media backlash rather than trying upholding the laws of the sport.
    3) Having been found guilty, the punishment was utterly inconsistent with the interpreted breach of the rules.
    To me the sanctioning body in its current form is unfit to rule F1.

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  • 407. At 9:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, emmig wrote:

    Right or wrong it doesn´t really matter. Next race people will find something else to be upset about and to have an opinion on.
    As much as many people are trying to trash talk Alonso the truth is he hasn´t done anything that is out of the ordinary or that other driver hasn´t done it before. Putting aside personal opinions the truth is his is one of the best and his Latin blood might be at some peoples dislike.
    F1 is a very expensive sport and where is a lot of money there is a lot of politics, but that doesn´t mean that the racing is not good.
    This wasn´t a bad day for Formula 1, this is just reality and reality strikes sometimes.

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  • 408. At 9:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, rob wrote:

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  • 409. At 9:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, ziokent wrote:

    This is dangerous. Next time McLaren say to Button to slow down and not attach Hailton, because of low fuel, someone may raise the hand and yell at team order. Which it, obviously, was.

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  • 410. At 9:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, ljhgvoutdytd wrote:

    now if massa had been called before the stewards in 2007 there'd be a worthwhile comparison to make ...

    did anyone hear team orders in 2007?

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  • 411. At 9:20pm on 25 Jul 2010, tintin1979 wrote:

    Once again Alonso has probably thrown his toys out of the pram. Shame he can't win a race by racing and over taking his team mate as you should do! I am glad they have been fined the max, but I'm not holding out for the FIA to do anything further, it is Ferrai after all and not certain other teams!

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  • 412. At 9:21pm on 25 Jul 2010, Altijd wrote:

    I think, like DC told after the race, that every team gives teamorders. It is a team sport so logic that one goes for the best team result. I would say that the 1 - 2 finish of McLaren in the Turkey GP was also a fixed situation. They did not let the drivers fight for the win. Look to this Youtube movie
    www.youtube.com/watch?v=a7IiR6Mgwyk
    clearly shows there was a team agreement that, even when Hamilton would lower his speed, Button would not overtake him. In my opinion this is exactly the same as what Ferrari did today. So if Ferrari is punished, McLaren should be to. I would like to hear from Eddy Jordan if he has the same opinion on this, or see if he always will rule in favour of a British team :-).

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  • 413. At 9:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, bj123 wrote:

    What generous gesture of Massa s to let Alonso pass him, if as the team said alonso was faster he would surely have caught massa and passed him.
    Philip you need to leave ferrari and go to a team that gives you the respect you deserve.alonso is a child who spits the dummy when things dont go his way.ferrari are treating you like they did Barrecello they will only allow you to win if alonso has no chance , you have proved you should have the same status as him.Fearri you should be ashamed of youselves

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  • 414. At 9:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, rob wrote:

    What a farce, its just gets worse for F1. I just think if this situation had been with any other team we would have seen a stronger response today.

    NO MORE FOR ME WOULD RATHER WATCH TRUE SPORT

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  • 415. At 9:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    Tim Hawkins wrote:

    Alonso was still faster than him in the race and he's a mile ahead of him in the championship.

    If he was so much faster why not pass fairly as the RBR and Mclaren drivers have been doing.

    Alonso is now 38points ahead of Massa. If the race had been run fairly and suppose Massa had won the gap would be less and one no show by Alonso would make it even closer.

    But on the other hand Massa may have a no show, but at only just over half way through a season this is not the time to be "fixing" races, God forbid but Alonso could have an accident which could rule him out of the championship and Massa might lose the title by just under 7 points.

    A lot of mights but notice not one pre-planned or formulised during a race by the team manager!!

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  • 416. At 9:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, William wrote:

    What Ferrari done was unsporting and cheated us the public, then they tell lies about it,, fine was nothing !! carry on like this and face the RATH of the Public ..Bent fixed races = zero interest in this so called sport.

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  • 417. At 9:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, switchflaka wrote:

    They fixed the result of the race.

    It doesn't matter who's leading what, or who's going well or not in the WDC, or whether you had profited or been punished by the stewards in previous races.

    That's like saying because I got an unwarranted parking ticket last week, I shouldn't be punished for robbing a liquor store this week.

    Or that you didn't 'crash' a car this time, like Singapore, to profit your other driver.

    Same difference.

    Hard to believe the FIA won't hand out a much bigger fine and a grid penalty next race. Oh wait, I forgot who's the president of the FIA now.

    If I was at Hockenheim I'd want my money back for my tickets.

    If you look at it from a strategic point of view - the biggest error was that Ferrari made was they were so obvious about it. If they'd actually been thinking - they should have pre-planned fixing the race, by telling Massa he had to go into a bogus "fuel-conserve" mode if they encountered that situation. Nobody would have questioned it.

    By my math, a 100k fine is the equivalent to roughly 1 days' pay for Alonso.

    So how is that a deterrent.

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  • 418. At 9:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, Fuzzy_Dunlop wrote:

    If this is a sport then the drivers should find out who is fastest by racing each other. If, as Coulthard says, it is a business, then the teams should not lose focus of what their customers want from them, ie. racing.
    If the teams will not race then they might as well introduce skid pan sections and spikes on the wheels, they could pull in a lot more viewers that way.
    Bring on KERS and the adjustable rear wing!

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  • 419. At 9:28pm on 25 Jul 2010, ljhgvoutdytd wrote:

    normally, people are innocent until proven guilty, generally, thats how society works.

    ferrari were not found guilty in 2007 as they have been here.

    massa was not seen to have been misleading stewards in 2007.

    now there's been a guilty verdict, now that ferrari and massa have been found to have been trying to mislead the stewards ...?

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  • 420. At 9:28pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tom wrote:

    @ Post number 76

    Hamilton didn't cheat in valencia, He made a mistake. He didn't overtake the SC knowing he wasn't going to get past it before the SC line. This incident however was cheating. Now team orders are in F1, no doubt about it. What really **** everyone off, especially the fans, is the way they delt with it. They did a half arsed job at "codeing" the instruction and then tried to lie their way out of the corner of the boxing ring thinking they could pull the wool over our eyes. Most of the people who watch F1 are quite interested in it (like myself). We know when teams are up to tricks, and trying to make us look like idiots is probably what upsets most people. We know what you did Ferrari, stop lying!

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  • 421. At 9:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, Madmax wrote:

    Cheaters all ways prosper, the rules were broken team disqualified no! but the stewards and Charlie Whiting are to scared to put a stop to Ferrari. Just because they are loaded with cash.

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  • 422. At 9:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, wolfwithin wrote:

    Ok.. so Alonso didn't deserve to win. Everyone knows it and i'm sure he does too. But if you think that team orders dont exist in F1, you are sadly mistaken.
    Do you think the easing off of Button towards Hamilton in Turkey was "his decision"?
    The only thing Ferrari did wrong was they did it so blatantly. If they had used, let' say some kind of "coded language" there would not be such a sensational outcry would there?
    And to compare F1 with Wresling?? There aren't meetings held between teams to decide which team is going to win, so let's stop with that shall we?
    Ferrari were the best team this weekend and personally, i think whatever any team wants to do with their cars and drivers is upto them and as long as no other teams or drivers are impacted it should be fine.

    Lets stop reacting emotionally here.

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  • 423. At 9:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, rob wrote:

    If BBC need to save money then pull the plug on this F1 farce, even Jonathon Ross is more sincere than this lot. Bring him back and get rid of the cheats.

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  • 424. At 9:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, stuart wrote:

    Team orders are a part of F1, I agree with DC,
    only a couple of races ago , red bull gave a team order to sebastian vettel to slow down and backoff webber , to which He ignored and took both of them out ,

    Backing off your team mate when you are faster is also team orders , so they should be fined $100,000 too , funny how the rules dont go for both , and christian horner just fuelling the fire,
    oh well the stewards have set a precedent now , so each time a team mate is told to back off the other team mate , 100,000 fine please

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  • 425. At 9:31pm on 25 Jul 2010, Bamz_ftw wrote:

    #53. At 6:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, Charlie Whiskey wrote:
    What disturbs me most about the post-race washup on the BBC red button, and this blog, is the obvious contempt that Martin and DC have for the fans who largely fund the TV income and hence so much of the F1 industry...

    Sorry mate must have been watching a different show to you. MB and DC simply pointed out that F1 is, and always has been a 'Team' sport, no matter what you choose to belive. They both made the point that team orders are common place, but that they are done under the radar, because the rules are simply unworkable. One team, two drivers, how can they not have team orders at some point during a season, to think otherwise is just kidding yourself.

    None of the farce made any sense to me, they had a one two anyway, why do Ferrari care two hoots about a WDC?, they only care about the constructors, so why needlesly put yourself in such a position. Bizzare.

    Was more sorry to see the gap netween McLaren and the front runners seems to have increased even with the new part.


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  • 426. At 9:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, Waspstar wrote:

    When my 7 year old son said to me "why is Massa lying when he hasn't done anything wrong?" it hit me how much damage this could do the sport unless Ferrari get stripped of their positions.

    I'm beginning to think it is irresponsible of me as a parent to subject my son to the unethical, deceitful and manipulative circus of F1. Ferrari are so wrapped up in their world of secrets and lies, they have lost their moral compass and the damage this will do to their team and the sport as a whole makes a mockery of the prize that we know as 'World Champion'.

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  • 427. At 9:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, ferdyhater wrote:

    A few points.
    Why did Smedley have to say, what appeared to be an ordinary question twice, and ask Felipe if he heard and understood him OK?
    I did not hear a response, did anyone?
    Why is Felipe being made a guilty party in this? All of us are told to do things by our bosses. What would have happened if he didn't?
    Stefano Domenicali should have admitted to Eddie that they told him to make way for Alonso. Well done Eddie, a brilliant piece of broadcasting.
    If it had been Mclaren, they would be facing bankruptcy again, like before.
    Alonso is the most petulent driver on the racing scene. Years ago, truly great drivers like Senna and Prost and Shuey were arrogant, but brilliant. They pulled off some outrageous stunts, but then defended them. We all loved them. Now Alonso wants the Championship on a plate by whinging and whining. I said after the British GP that he needs a strong boss.
    Watching Alonso squirm actually made me want to vomit. His words about the team are meaningless. I had my pen-name way before this incident, but it's even more bang on now!

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  • 428. At 9:32pm on 25 Jul 2010, marcf1 wrote:

    I think it's a joke that ferrari just get $100,000 fine. the points are worth more than that. It just proves that if the car is red it can get away with anything and if it's silver they throw the book at them. How long can we have alonso getting away with race fixing. They should be banned from the next race.

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  • 429. At 9:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, mr murray wrote:

    This sort of blatant cheating makes you question sport in general. Who's to say the English football team didn't have a wager on themselves to play so badly? National pride my ass. What about if Martin Whitmarsh said one day that he wanted Lewis to slow down and back into Button and let Vettel win the race so that Button couldn't win mathematically win the championship. I guess that'd be acceptable. It is a sport (team).

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  • 430. At 9:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    Roll on Hungary.
    I for one want this to happen.

    Massa in the lead Alonso in 2nd place FerrAri 5/6 seconds ahead of 3rd place and the immortal words by Mr. Smedley:

    ALONSO IS FASTER THAN YOU (YET GAIN) DO YOU UNDERSTAND?
    PS STOP BLOODY STARTING BETTER THAN HIM!!!


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  • 431. At 9:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, mostly_harmless wrote:

    Looking at this race I feel cheated as a member of the viewing public. I am sure that team orders go on but come on people, don't make it so blatant because from that point on people with switch off and not watch.

    This is supposed to be a sport and if the result is manufactured, it ceases to become a sport. I looked up sportsman in the dictionary and the definition is 'one who shows good spirit in sport, one who is ready to win or lose with good grace'. Now I don't know about anyone else here but, this sure doesn't sound like anyone at Ferrari and especially not Alonso.

    People are saying that Alonso is a better driver and I don't doubt that but, the bottom line is that he has to deliver in the race. The first corner move by Massa was brilliant and Alonso never looked like he would overtake him. Even with the Vettel situation, Massa covered his line so he couldn't be overtaken.

    Alonso has always been a driver I love to hate but, now he has gone down further in my estimations. If he was so good he should have got past Massa anyway without him having to throw his toys out of his pram, run to mummy, have a tantrum and shout 'Mummy... Massa wont let me past'. Oh and for Alonso to say he knew nothing about it is just so insulting for all of the people watching.

    In this situation with Ferrari saying this result was for the good of the team, their drivers were already first and second so the result was good for the team anyway. So this decision wasn't for the good of the team, it was for the good of Alonso.

    Now we find that the result stands. Well, if at the end of the season Alonso does win the championship by a couple of points we can't say that the best driver won because those couple of points were given to him, he didn't earn them. This maybe good for the team or good for Alonso but, it sure is not good for the sport.

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  • 432. At 9:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, Madmax wrote:

    how about a viewers protest. Don`t watch the next race on TV, ratings will plummit Berrnies pocket gets hit and then he might do something about the cheating, no hes a ferrari man.
    Who`s up for the boycot ?

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  • 433. At 9:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, laughingdevil wrote:

    A few interesting points I think come out of this, an I am one of those like DC who thinks that anyone who doesn't think team orders play are part are (to be polite) not watching. They play a massive part, just like team favourtism does.

    Point 1 - I can't find anyone saying that Massa is a better or faster driver than Alonso.

    Point 2 - Point 1 being the case the fact that the Superior driver in the same car couldn't overtake someone in the same spec car without "help" shows how difficult overtaking is in F1. If one of the best drivers on the grid can't overtake his teammate (not for the first time this season either) then it is obvious that somthing needs to change to encourage a better race, not just the person leading from the first corner winning the race,

    Point 3 - You see obvious team orders almost every week, such coded messages are comnmon yet no-one else has been punished this season? Why? Is this punishment and the other recent run-ins Ferrari have had with the stewards because the new FIA boss wants to cut his links with his old team?

    Point 4 - Team favouritism is far worse than team orders, and I'm not just talking about who gets the only nose cone either! I've lost count of the amount of times a team-mate of Lewis has had a "technical fault" which turned out to be rather vague, but gave him a better grid or race position. The amount of times he gets favoured with team stratagy and his team-mates get put on the "wildcard" strategy as well is a bit dubious, as is the fact he seems to get sent out for qualifiying in a better "slot", this also happens quite a bit with Vettel. Yet the FIA do nothing.

    Perhaps its time to drastically shake up F1, either the different garages have no communication what so ever (enforced by observers) or teams can only run 1 car.

    Ultimatly that's the only way to stop this happening.

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  • 434. At 9:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, raheel88 wrote:

    Watching that Massa interview, the last few seconds were heart-wrenching;

    "I would have been happy."

    Sad

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  • 435. At 9:35pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dovidw wrote:

    What a farce!! I'm willing to bet that if a fixer would have presented themselves to Ferrari BEFORE the race and said for $5M or $10M I can guarantee a Ferrari 1, 2- that would have been a wise investment; repaid many times over. In societies where the combined collective consciousnesses are addicted to sensational publicity, a $100,000 "fine" in this case is so close to an endorsement, that Ferrari must feel they've won twice. Surely the only just penalty for such action, is as elegant as it is simple; just reverse the 1, 2 positions. Everybody wins drivers, spectators and the sport. Because what people REALLY want to experience is a world run in a decent, honest, and moral way and the problem is, that it isn't.

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  • 436. At 9:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, Esscee wrote:

    When is a rule not a rule? When there is sculldugery by all the teams in F1. One new rule this season, no refuelling, simple and staight forward. If a car did stop to refuel the driver would be disqualified for breaking the rules, no questions asked. Another rule "no team orders". Team orders were "issued" by Ferrari (maybe by code) Again breaking the rules and disqualification should have followed. Instead Ferrari pick up maximum points and a token 65K fine. It wasn`t although Alonso was right up Massa`s tail for lots of laps. Massa was in total control and should have won. Sad day for F1.
    Esscee

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  • 437. At 9:38pm on 25 Jul 2010, LifesVoyager wrote:

    MB and DC keep referring to it being about the championship. I was watching a RACE not a championship and I was denied seeing Massa and Alonso RACING.

    The rule about no team orders was made for this very reason - don't mess up the race with team orders.

    Massa has his faults as a driver but he gets better every year. To make him concede his place to the conceited Alonso and then have to lie about it to us all is shameful for him and for Ferrari.

    F1 has, yet again, been disgraced.

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  • 438. At 9:39pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stan_Mathews_Fan wrote:

    In reply to 366 -- We all know that is not going to happen, the Fia president is Jean Todt & he will not allow it to happen, the race stewards took the correct decision & pronounced Ferrari guilty of breaking the rules the whole world knows they did, what they didn't do was to apply the correct punishment which should have been to penalise them with a hefty point loss, the fact that Ferrari has said they will not appeal the measly fine is an admittance on their part that they have have broken the rules & CHEATED to manipulate the result, any other sport this would be a serious offense, but as we all know F1 is not a sport, it's strictly a commercial venture, but I for one cannot understand why the punters do not protest in a more serious manner, there must exist legal ways to protest/sue/process Ferrari, personally I don't bet on F1 or any other sport but thousands do & they have literally cheated these guys who bet on Massa to win?
    Also must comment on Ferraris insensitivity towards Felipe Massa, it's the anniversary of that horrific accident that happened to him a year ago, I would imagine a win today would have given him a boost mentally & morally, but no, the guy in the red pram was whinging because he couldn't overtake him, if he was going so much faster why couldn't he overtake him fair & square, he still had plenty of laps left without having to fake a lapse on massa's part, also there are still plenty of races left in the season for him to win the drivers championship, it's still wide open !
    But of course there are a variety of words to describe the Prince of the Asturias, & for sure Magnamamous is not included.
    As I am writing from Brasil so I don't have the benefit of watching the postrace debate, but what I can make out is that Eddie Jordan was the only person to make any sort of strong protest, credit to him, how anyone connected with the "sport" can condone these rulebreaking tactics is beyond me, and that includes the writer of this blog, you can imagine the reaction here in Brasil to this pathetic incident, I for one hope that Massa will finish ahead of "don" alonso at the finish of the championship although that will be difficult with the support he gets from his employers.

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  • 439. At 9:41pm on 25 Jul 2010, Nolind wrote:

    This is indeed a sad day for F1. A fine is not an effective disincentive for a rich team like Ferrari. The minimum punishment should be a reversal of the positions and forfeiture of constructors points. As this was such a blatant act, the punishment should be more severe with the imposition of a 1 race ban or starting the Ferraris from the back of the grid for the next race. Either way, no team should be able to buy exemption from the rules.

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  • 440. At 9:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, f1-di1966 wrote:

    If Fernando was allowed to go into the lead because Massa had got a problem with his car and was going to drop back in the pack, then fair enough. But, as Ferrari got a 1st and 2nd in the race, then it has nothing to do with it being about the "Team", as they got the same points irrespective. Once again Alonso is causing problems within a Team by his bullying and acting like a petulant child, who needs his legs slapped to stop him from stamping his feet up and down for not getting his own way. If Fernando ends up at the end of the year as the 2010 Drivers Champion, then everyone should remember this weekend and he should then be stripped of the title . . . he is not a good sportsman, nor a great driver and most definitely NOT a team player and both he and Ferrari should not be able to tarnish a good sport with this sort of behaviour!

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  • 441. At 9:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, marcf1 wrote:

    it is not the fact of team orders but the way they did it. they could of done the save fuel lie. but the fact that it was done so open shows a lack of respect to the fans and than to be found guilty and just get a fine shows that the fia have no back bone when it comes to feeari.

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  • 442. At 9:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, jonathan Maher wrote:

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  • 443. At 9:43pm on 25 Jul 2010, hellf1nuts wrote:

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

  • 444. At 9:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, ThatDarnedDave wrote:

    Congratulations, Andrew, on raising the debate we all really needed.

    Oh, and I'm not talking about those who chose to use it as just another platform to spout their partisan drivel or even stick up for the intrusion of gambling into our revered pinnacle of technical excellence (I remember telling my brother in law, when he complained of being robbed when DC moved over for Mikka on the pit straight, that he was a fool for betting on an F1 driver, when I could have told him that team tactics were the order of the day). OK, so they have a rule now. And all the teams normally obey it, yes?

    Just how many minutes ago were these folk born? If you tell me Hispania Racing don't have team orders (apart from who drives which Sunday) I might just about believe you.

    Several contributors, however, have absolutely hit the nail on the head without even realising they had. Hands up all those who said "If Alonso was quicker on the track at the time, why didn't he just close up and pass him?" Anyone who needs to ask that question has not really been an F1 fan for that long, have they?

    That is the root of F1's problem today. If your team-mate, or anyone else with a car of similar performance, which has a slight impairment that does not disadvantage him greatly in any significant area, but does lose him time, is still impossible to pass without his full cooperation unless, 1. He's confident you're not going to try to pass him or, 2. You threaten him with an accident that may cause one, or both, of you to lose a major points haul your were starting to count on collecting.

    What we need to keep the fans happy is regular TV coverage of one of the junior formulae where all this happens on a regular basis - either that, or give our F1 stars cars with massive power, skinny, hard (indestructible) tyres and no down force (6" ground clearance, down on the bump stops, ought to do it). True skill will inevitably show as the merely brave will be stuck in the gravel-traps. I have the rest of the formula regulations, which I might amuse you with another day, in my head. Sadly, a lot of the 'technical excellence' would be ruled out at a single stroke, but we'd never get it anyway as the sponsors would have nowhere to paint their names and, much as some fans like to berate them, it would leave F1 as a rich gentleman's quiet pastime with little or no media exposure and just a handful of the faithful left scattered around the grandstands.

    Forget the rule (which, for the record, I do think ought to be scrapped - it's totally un-policeable; the really slick ones have just learned to do it without being noticed). We've really had this situation since, with just a few notable exceptions, the end of the 50's when team orders were definitely the done thing, even to the point of being called in to hand your car over to your team leader, if his broke (I wasn't old enough to attend these races, but I was old enough to read dad's copy of Motor Sport).

    If Alonso makes up enough ground to win this year's championship then I, for one, will applaud him, as I will any champion, though many of the great's have not always played fair. You could only ever hope to make that kind of gap up against the opposition the calibre of those currently ahead of him by being very, very good (or having a Ferrari with a much greater superiority over the other teams than the one he had today).


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  • 445. At 9:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, sootyf1 wrote:

    Its time the FIA grew some balls and stop pussy footing around Ferrari.If it had been any other team they would have been thrown out of the race.And as for the tenner i put on Massa to win at 30-1 who is going to give me my winnings that i have lost.Ive been robbed by Ferrari.Bad day for F1.Starting to lose faith in the people that run the sport.

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  • 446. At 9:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, GeordiePorker wrote:

    Good blog Andrew. Thanks.

    I want to start by saying I'm a McLaren fan and have never liked Ferarri. However, in my opinion, the rule should not exist. I don't agree with Ferrari's actions, but they want to win the WDC and Massa isn't cutting the mustard.

    The trick the teams need to arrange is how best to achieve all of their aims. They want both champs - Drivers and Constructors. So they want 2 competitive drivers. Then the trick is how to manage that without causing problems. Allowing team orders allows the teams to openly say 'hold position' to keep a 1-2, or reverse the order if they see fit. But if they do it openly, there's no controversy - it's simply obvious what clauses are in what contracts.

    Personally, I would like to see teams allowing both drivers compete until one is mathematically out of the running, but that is unlikely ever to happen properly. Some teams will always select a number 1 driver (and I don't mean specific teams, just in a season at least one of the teams is bound to do so - last year Hamilton was obviously no 1 at McLaren).

    But to ask the stewards to work out whether a coded message was a coded message or simply information is asking the impossible because they need to provide the proof before taking action.

    Just my opinion. Thanks again for another good blog!

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  • 447. At 9:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, Panis96 wrote:

    Apologies if anyone's made this point already (there's far too many posts to read them all)

    Formula 1 is a team sport (as a few posters have pointed out) but teams (or rather "constructors") should be trying to win the "constructors'" championship. Frank Williams always used to say that was what he cared about winning, so he just let his drivers race.

    Of course teams want their drivers to win the drivers' championship too, but this shouldn't allow them to spoil races and rob the fans. In my opinion, when something like this happens- the stewards should simply reverse the result or apply a time penalty to the winner. They need only do it once and the problem would go away for good.

    As for title showdowns, I think the same applies- to be a deserving drivers' champion you have to be the best "driver" over the season (every race) and if your team-mate does move aside that should be their choice and their choice alone.

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  • 448. At 9:46pm on 25 Jul 2010, alfonsoalonso wrote:

    Bravo, Fernando! You showed the critics what a true winner and racer you really are. All those who claimed you were just an over-rated, whinging brat have been made to eat their words. More of the same please!

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  • 449. At 9:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, jpenston wrote:

    I think 400+ comments in 3.5 hours says everything about how we the viewers feel about this. Much like Suarez's handball vs Ghana in the world cup, today made a mockery of competition.

    Sport only works if there is a level playing field for all competitors which is why cheating is so bad. It makes everything pointless. Why not break all the rules and win that way? You saw on the podium exactly what hapens when you make a mockery of competition - no one cares who wins, not even the winners.

    Unfortunately, F1 is run by insiders and the expert "analysis" comes from inside the club. I expect more from professional journalists than I saw today - condoning the actions because the result was good for the team that broke the rules or the world championship.

    Would it be ok to DC and MB and all the other ferrari apologists if Massa starts driving into Alonso's title challengers, deliberately taking them out of the race so that Alonso can get 25 points each race for the rest of the season?

    Next up we would have Rob Smedley chucking a load of drawing pins on the road in front of Vettel's car on the grid and the Ferrari pit crew "accidentally" rolling a tyre in front of Lewis as he is trying to leave the pits after a stop.

    No? Why not? What is the differece? It's a slippery slope. The moment you start to excuse someone from breaking the rules of the game on the basis that is was "understandable" you destroy the whole point of competition.

    Come on BBC. Stop employing people as experts when all they really are is apologists. What happened today was that rules were broken. This should never be acceptable and should never be excused.

    In sport, rules were not made to be broken. They exist to stop the sport from breaking. If anyone doesn't like the rules and doesn't want to play by them, they can go off an set up their own sport. Like WWF.

    And no, I did not approve of Lewis / Heikki's similar manouver a few years back and Massa letting Kimi through was also way out of order too.

    One last point which I am also getting very tired of making. Vettel's move off the line on Alonso was massively dangerous and if someone doesn't stop him moving over on cars that are already alongside, he is going to hurt someone very badly one of these days.

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  • 450. At 9:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, Gareth wrote:

    If Alonso cannot win a championship by fighting for EVERY point he earns he does not deserve to win the championship in the first place.

    You won't see Vettel or Webber or Hamilton or Button giving away points to each other wherever they end up in the title fight.

    This has done more to damage F1's reputation than the $100k "monopoly money" fine imposed on Ferrari could ever make up for.

    DC and several others certainly have a valid point when they say "it happens...deal with it" but that still doesn't make it right.

    I think he and many others in this sport are forgetting who pays the wages of EVERYONE involved and make the entire thing possible. The fans.

    99% of those fans who've commented on today's race were disgusted and outraged by what happened.

    Team orders will NEVER be accepted by fans and every time this issue rears it's ugly head it will continue to damage the reputation of F1.

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  • 451. At 9:47pm on 25 Jul 2010, jismartin wrote:

    Another "most obvious recent one" was the overtaking of Hamilton to Heikki Kovalainen in Hockenheim 2008, please do not have such a fragile memory

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  • 452. At 9:48pm on 25 Jul 2010, lhfantilidie wrote:

    What constitutes a team order? Christian Horner asking team mates to "respect" each other. A team order? Sure. Sensible? Absolutely.

    As far as the FA is concerned and if they are so against interfering with race results what about the blue flags. Sure a slightly different scenario but no less instructions that interfere with racing in every single race.

    Personally, I can't wait to see LH, JB, FA, MW and SV going at each other. This can only make it more interesting.

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  • 453. At 9:50pm on 25 Jul 2010, john hall wrote:

    I spent hours and hours watching and following the practice sessions and qualifiers only to end up watching a fix on sunday, WTF. Why is the BBC wasting my TV License money on this rubbish.

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  • 454. At 9:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, romanchariot wrote:

    Simple solution to the problem, "only one car and driver per team", it might force them to be more reliable to!

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  • 455. At 9:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, flipflopover wrote:

    I agree that what has happened at today’s race was another embarrassment to the sport. However F1s history is littered with these situations, on and off the race track - it's partly why I love it.

    A proportion of the blame has to lie with the FIA. Fighting for a victory can only be possible when technical regulations remove the aero elements that make natural overtaking nearly impossible. This is still the fundmental problem of F1, watch the MotoGP tonight at Laguna and see proper racing.

    I may be confusing two separate issues here, but if Alonso was significantly faster than Massa and was able to catch and pass him in the initial laps of the race then this situation could have been avoided. Not to mention we would see the fastest cars, with the world’s best drivers actually racing for 67 laps rather than just to the first corner (unless it rains).




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  • 456. At 9:51pm on 25 Jul 2010, Bob F wrote:

    It's easy - do away with the drivers' championship.
    Ferrari obviously have. Although their team gets the same points in either order they are still greedy and want the drivers' championship for their team and don't care who wins it as long as Ferrari do. The result didn't depend on the driver's ability.
    If you want drivers to race they should either all have identical cars or be allocated them at random to take team orders out of it. Then the drivers' championship would really mean something and the team one would be really interesting.
    Team orders makes a farce of the final result as far as winning driver is concerned. The drivers knew it and were ashamed of the result.
    Ferrari International Assistance as they got away with it again.
    How much are the BBC paying this year to watch this entertaining choreographed performance rather than sportsmen competing?

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  • 457. At 9:52pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tamburello wrote:

    First of all, great article! It covered most of the bases without the mindless pro-Brit, anti-Alonso sentiment that peppers many of the comments. At the root of this controversy is a stupid, unthought through rule which is not only so impossible to police as to be useless but also flies in the face of Formula One's tradition which has always embraced the idea of team orders (how many Championships would Fangio have won under present rules? tho admittedly that was team orders taken to an absurd extreme). The only reason for the present rule is to protect gambling interests which is a pretty poor reason for any rule.
    Today the fastest driver won and he got more points than anyone else, so where's the problem?

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  • 458. At 9:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, RAH1 wrote:

    Just watched the Grand Prix on iPlayer, lost interest after the Ferrari switch.
    Why is it that every time F1 has been brought into disrepute in the last few years that Fernando Alonso's name crops up.
    I'm sure he would do much better if he concentrated on driving the car.

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  • 459. At 9:53pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stuart wrote:

    My own personal viewpoint here...
    there is no doubt it was a coded message to make Massa let alsonso past. If it was not, then Massa's race engineer would have had NOTHING to apologise for. Yes, it was wrong to do it. Had this move been pulled by Maclaren Alonso would have been on the radio within seconds calling for his minions in the team to run crying to the stewards...

    But it was not done by Maclaren, just as cutting the corner to keep position in Silverstone was not done by Maclaren.

    How is it that the other teams can manage to win a race without cheating (Not certain on Hamilton's explanation of the safety car situation) but Alonso - with his supposed much quicker car could not manage to pull off an ovetake on track fairly?

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  • 460. At 9:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, misha11 wrote:

    All I've heard today is that this is a team sport, well the team had the maximum points it was going to get today before the swap so by changing their drivers around they just made a mockery of the WDC. It doesn't make it more exciting, it just makes it feel more manufactured.
    I am not so naive to believe that team orders do not exist but Ferrari were caught out today breaking a written rule. If I was done for speeding the fact that everyone else does it would not be a relevant argument.
    But perhaps the thing that leaves the most bitter taste in my mouth was the obvious lying and backpedalling that went on afterwards ( I have seen 4 year olds lie more convincingly)and the fact that there would have been no enquiry until it became obvious that there was some sort of media backlash happening. Regardless of what team/driver was involved, I maybe a simple race goer but if you are going to take my money , do not patronise me.

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  • 461. At 9:54pm on 25 Jul 2010, KMCC wrote:

    I've tried to look at this from all sides and every way i look at it i loose respect for everyone involved.

    The simple fact is that this is a spectator sport. We all watch and turn up to races to watch top drivers race. Ferari and the drivers took that away from us. I have such respect for the red bull team for letting both drivers race earlier this season. Yes it hurt red bull and both drivers but to do anything else is an insult and hurts f1 but for fans (the paying customers) it was great!

    At some point today I think it was Coultard that compared this to a football manager favouring certain players. I can't see the comparison in terms of favouring individual players as differnt players have such different skills, playing styles and form that a manager uses the best players for the job at hand.
    Now I think it was last season fergie fielded a united side that seemed to be a youth team with no first team regular starters in a league game in order to rest his first team players for a european game that week. This was contavercial enough but at least we still got to see a game. Today ferari and the drivers took away the opportunity to watch two great drivers battle it out. They took the race out of motor racing!

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  • 462. At 9:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, Craig Golby wrote:

    I am totally on board that the teams still make use of Team Orders, even if it is fundamentally against the rules. But they are a little more subtle about it.

    Why not tell Massa to turn his engine revs down and/or voice a concern about fuel, leaving Alonso to do his business and have to race past Massa in a higher revving car.

    No, they pass a fairly obvious message, two laps later Massa slows down, and seconds later the team say thanks good job. It is nothing short of a fix, and whilst it doesnt affect the Constructor Championship, they would have been a 1-2 anyway, it has affected the Drivers.

    To take on board DCs and MSs comments, what happens if Alonso has a rubbish final third, Massa has a stormer and falls 3 points short of the Championship. Will they all look back and go, ahhhh, shouldnt have used those non-team orders should we.

    As for the fine, I hope the FIA do something, as £65k for an F1 team, particularly Ferrari is small change, and what this now says is... if you want to engineer a result, its against the rules, however it will only cost £65k so weigh that up against the result, and hey, its worth every penny.

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  • 463. At 9:56pm on 25 Jul 2010, John Ludlow wrote:

    F1 does have this odd identity crisis where it's both an individual sport and a team sport. As long as that's the case, there will be these conflicts as it's not just about the team result - there's a Driver's Championship and in Massa's situation I'd maybe figure if the team did not have my back...

    I think it's an issue that would require major restructuring in order to solve. One way would be to drop the Driver's Championship but I think that would kill a lot of the interest of the sport. I'm rooting for Button and Hamilton because they're British, but I'm not sure I care enough about McLaren to carry on watching (and a lot of the best drivers may leave the sport in that event anyway).

    Another way would be to drop the Constructor's Championship, though how many of the big teams would be willing to invest in the sport?

    A third way is to have 1-car teams. You may have two red cars on track marked Ferrari, but they are individual teams with no influence on each other.

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  • 464. At 9:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, Jonathan wrote:

    Andrew, the morality of this is only "murky" in your distorted version of reality in which Fernando Alonso can do no wrong.

    Team orders were always repugnant and insulting to the fans. Now they are repugnant, insulting AND illegal.

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  • 465. At 9:57pm on 25 Jul 2010, G33 wrote:

    Another Spaniard takes the "unfairplay" way to win.
    Alonso's win is no different than Tour de France winner Alberto Contador who won the yellow jersey a few stages ago when he did not wait for Andy Schleck who was wearing the yellow jersey and had mechanical problems. Traditionally Tour riders have waited for the yellow jersey owner if and when he had mechanical problems.
    Massa deserved to win, specially after all he has been through; and if Alonso wanted a win he should have won the old fashioned way: passing Massa competitively, not getting a free pass...

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  • 466. At 10:03pm on 25 Jul 2010, sal wrote:

    I strongly believe that most English language media will be outraged by this but if you read the media reports in other languages you will see a difference. There are cultural differences on the issue of 'team orders'. Some only see the here and now of one race; others see the billions of dollars spent, the years of man hours, and the championship as a whole not just one race. This outrage is very Anglocentric ... as is the race marshal and many of the stewards ... too much power from one jolly old isle.

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  • 467. At 10:04pm on 25 Jul 2010, Christophe- wrote:

    Disgusting nothing more can be said!!!!!!!!

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  • 468. At 10:06pm on 25 Jul 2010, Stargazer wrote:

    466, Sal

    Spanish radio has condemned Ferrari in the strongest terms. They have been far harsher than anything in the "english media".

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  • 469. At 10:10pm on 25 Jul 2010, Craig_D wrote:

    Andrew, great post and I agree with you points except I fail to see why you don't see the difference between today and situations like Brazil 2008 with Massa letting Raikkonen take victory and thus the title.

    The case of Brazil 08 wasn't unsporting race fixing, it was the only commonsense option available. Massa couldn't win the champoinship, only Raikkonen could. It would have been ludicrous for the team to have denied Kimi. Such a 'team order' was clearly in the interests of competition and there was no alternative.

    Today was not a case with a 'no alternative' situation. Massa was deprived of his chance of fighting for the championship at a time in the season when those decisions shouldn't be made. Through the nature of this being a sport, drivers should be allowed to battle it out freely and fairly until a driver is mathematically out of contention. Only towards the end of the season when everything has come out of the wash and a driver is out of the running is it logical and 'fair' for that driver to support the other.

    Yes Massa is behind Alonso on points and hasn't matched his pace thus far, but who's to say that Massa couldn't hit a purple patch and outperform Alonso, a la Webber. He's clearly proven before he has world championship potential. Also, though he was 31 points behind Alonso, lets not forget that under the old system that was only 12 or so - hardly enough at halfway through the season to say, 'No, it's too late for you Felipe, only Alonso has a chance now'. Sometimes I think with the new points system, people think the points gaps are more significant than they actually are - as evidenced by the many swings we've had and people suddenly leaping back into contention when folk had them down and out.

    Alonso may have been faster today but Massa had done the better job. It was up to Alonso to overtake and get the job done. If Alonso could only have finished 2nd and then lost the championship by less than 7 points, then that's the way things would be, and the actual champion would have won fairly. Instead if Alonso now wins it by less than 7 points, people will just call it a tainted championship.

    Finally, yes I understand the point that teams are like businesses and lots of money is at stake to succeed, but at the end of the day the strength and credibility of a sport relies on it being exactly that - a sport.

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  • 470. At 10:11pm on 25 Jul 2010, Tom wrote:

    @ Post 469

    You mean Brazil 2007 :P

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  • 471. At 10:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, nickydoda wrote:

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

  • 472. At 10:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, Ian_the_chopper wrote:

    I can understand the indignation over todays quite clear team orders by Ferrari.

    Now either they are banned or they aren't! A 100,000 fine is nothing to a company or organisation of Ferrari's size. Personally speaking I would have disqualified Alonso but I was most amazed at the sheer incompetence of Ferrari over it all. After Austria 2002 you really thought they could have planned it better so no one would have known or even thought anything untoward was going on rather than the patently amateur thing we saw today.

    I am not expecting the coded messages to be of the "it is snowing in Moscow today Demetri" cold war type but surely there must be something that codes as brake late and overcook the entry into the hairpin at corner six next lap.

    Enough people have locked up there in the recent past and been undertaken as they go wide particularly if they are under pressure. It could easily have been written off as I made an error and Fernando capitalised on it.

    If Massa had done that and deflected any queries with the Red Bull Istanbul incident and needing to not tak off your team mate if you make a mistake that would have been the end of it.

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  • 473. At 10:12pm on 25 Jul 2010, Martin B wrote:

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  • 474. At 10:13pm on 25 Jul 2010, VSam wrote:

    I totally agree with this article. It gave me another perspective of what happened today. Well done for Ferrari, well done for Alonso and Massa.
    I think many here are selective in their opinions, clearly showing prejudice for a team and a driver.
    What about "Jason, you need to save fuel" a few races ago, when Button was charging against Hamilton? Did you see Hamilton's long face when he 'won'? He was like, "why did you disobeyed the 'team orders'".
    Let us not be selective and hypocrites. This happens all the time, in every race, some are more subttle than others.

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  • 475. At 10:16pm on 25 Jul 2010, Doug Holman wrote:

    The latest F1 shenanigans expose its fundamental systemic flaw, the dichotomy between the Drivers and Manufacturers’ Championships. In most other sports the prize EITHER goes to a team OR to an individual. In F1 (and some other parts of motor sport) it’s BOTH.
    An F1 fan tends to have one or more favourite teams AND a one or more favourite drivers. If there was only a Manufacturers’ Championship and no racing between drivers in the same team, it would deprive the drivers and the fans of at least half of the enjoyment. The same thing would happen if there were no Manufacturers’ Championship and all the cars were identical. The question is how BOTH Championships co-exist.
    If we need both but can’t make them equal, one has to take priority. Clearly, the question is “which one” but first we must choose who decides? Not the drivers, not the stewards, not even the FIA. It’s ultimately the market, the fans, us! We have the power to stop watching, to stop attending and to boycott the goods and services of the sponsors upon whom the entire F1 circus depends.
    The vast majority of fans find “coded team orders” to be distasteful. We would find smarter, more secretive team orders EVEN MORE distasteful. We just want good competitive motor racing. By definition, when the words “sport” and “cheating” appear in the same sentence, that sport loses credibility ... and dies.
    The answer is to develop a set of rules which recognises which Championship takes precedence. Is it to be Drivers or Manufacturers?
    Suppose it were Drivers. That suggests TWO supplementary prizes for manufacturers – one for whoever produced the winning driver’s car and another for whoever produced the cars for the most successful pair of drivers.
    If Manufacturers took precedence, there would be two supplementary prizes for drivers – one for whoever scored the most points with the winning manufacturer and another for whoever scored the most points. Not necessarily the same driver!
    Either way, at a stroke, the dilemma facing the team manager is removed and there is no need for team orders. We just need to decide which takes precedence – drivers or manufacturers!

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  • 476. At 10:19pm on 25 Jul 2010, Martin B wrote:

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

  • 477. At 10:21pm on 25 Jul 2010, Littlesoldier01 wrote:

    Its disgraceful that the result stands.
    I personally had money bet on Massa to win. The fact that the ferrari team called Team orders on the result is fraudulaent. If this happened in any other sport there would be a criminal investigation. Where's the criminal investigation into this sport?? I'm sure that a few Punters Close to the Ferrari Team have made a significant amount of Money as a result of this " Race Fixing"!!!

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  • 478. At 10:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, Freester wrote:

    A long time F1 fan. For the 1st time I feel obliged to register and comment.

    As a spectator I feel cheated. There are rules. NO TEAM ORDERS.

    Anyone who says that wasn't a team order is deluded.

    It was a boring race. I was looking forward to a battle where Alonso actually had to pass Massa racing. Could he really?

    Why does this controversy always follow Alonso?

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  • 479. At 10:22pm on 25 Jul 2010, desfoudy wrote:

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  • 480. At 10:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, pickwick wrote:

    It's more the fact they tried to lie about afterwards. Give us a bit of credit guys...Blatant use of team orders for all too hear.

    I'm also at a loss as to why everyone seems to think Jenson was told not to pass Lewis in Turkey. The radio transmissions I heard were one telling Lewis to save fuel and Lewis asking if Jenson was being told the same, to which they answered yes. Jenson then closed the gap whilst pushing (clearly not saving fuel) tried to pass, was firmly rebuffed by Lewis who then scampered off into the distance. Where are the team orders there?

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  • 481. At 10:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, robbo3690 wrote:

    Bad day for F1 today. Ferrari would of still got there 1-2 today Maybe Vettel could of stolen 2nd who knows F1 fans were robbed of this by a clear as daylight team orders message which the whole world understood.

    As for the fine $100,000 This is peanuts for Ferrari. The stewards should have also changed back the 1-2 & given Massa the win instead of Teflonso. This would of been a better punishment. So now Alonso has 7 extra points at a cost of $100,000. That send out a good message to all teams. It's ok to cheat cos the gain is far better than the punishment.

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  • 482. At 10:23pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sand_Castles wrote:

    "F1 is a team sport; teams constantly manipulate races. Having a rule banning team orders doesn't mean they don't happen, it simply means teams have to find duplicitous ways of employing them." says DC.

    That's a posh way DC to say the teams are all bending over backwards to bend the rules.

    Watch out Mark Webber you might just be No 2 driver yet!!

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  • 483. At 10:24pm on 25 Jul 2010, Joe wrote:

    I didn't see the whole race - I've just watched the highlights. But I disagree with this blog.

    In my opinion, Ferrari's biggest offence is not in giving preference to one of their drivers (that's their own decision, but in the way they attempt to brazen it out afterwards - it is obvious that Massa received team orders, but it is an insult to anyone with intelligence that they claim that there were none.

    Rob Smedley says in his post race interview that he said "sorry" to Massa on the radio because he was sorry that Massa had been overtaken. Apparently he forgot that he also told Massa "well done" once Alonso had overtaken.

    And Stefano Domenicali's claim that Ferrari won't appeal the decision because they know the WMSC will take the 'right action', is the usual arrogant, bullying position that Ferrari are accuctomed to take. Of course, as Domenicali well knows, who is the president of the WMSC? Jean Todt, ex-Ferrari CEO, who gave the order to take victory out of Barrichello's hands and gift it to Schumacher at Austria in 2002. Maybe it won't be too much of a surprise if the WMSC take the 'right action' after all.

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  • 484. At 10:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, jim767 wrote:

    Sal

    watched the race in Brazil, similar culture to Spain but they went crazy when Massa was told to basically pull over.

    A population of over 200m makes our jolly little isle insignificant don't you think.

    And they didn't come out with all the long term nonsense that you spouted.

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  • 485. At 10:25pm on 25 Jul 2010, desfoudy wrote:

    IT LOOKS AS ALONSO IS CAUSING TROUBLE IN A THIRD TEAM . EVERY TEAM HE GOES TO HE SEEMS TO CAUSE TROUBLE FOR EVERY ONE.

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  • 486. At 10:26pm on 25 Jul 2010, kevin wrote:

    @474

    ...lol who's Jason... it did make me laugh reading your comment. For the record its Jenson.

    As for the incident... it's such a shame that this happens in F1... if only all drivers were as competitive as Senna & Prost then team orders would deffo not affect the race.

    I think there should be one very clear rule over the matter. Either have no team orders and enforce it to the letter of the law or bring back team orders.

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  • 487. At 10:27pm on 25 Jul 2010, pushbike wrote:

    I think Eddie Jordan and Christian Horner were right on todays main issue
    i.e. ferrari ordered one two
    My suggestion is as soon as possible 1 car and driver per team
    1st get teams up to about 15 then cut to one driver and car per team and add new teams to make up to abt 20 teams
    Then its not a team sport any more and they cant do it

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  • 488. At 10:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, Dragon76 wrote:

    What a complete waste of time this afternoon was. I want to see racing right through all the positions a fight for 14th place can be as exciting as a 1st place fight. Jean todt has a massive decision on his hands but unfortunatley any thing other than point deductions will always be seen as favouring Ferrari. Maybe a team manager should never be allowed to have his position.
    All the leave alonso alone people.....we have already seen how you back him and I for one will never forget

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  • 489. At 10:30pm on 25 Jul 2010, AvalonD wrote:

    Ferrari's actions today showed their utter contempt for the rules and fans of Formula One. I think that Team Orders should be banned and penalties handed out that properly punish the offenders and strip them of any advantage gained by cheating. Noone should be able to simply buy their way out of the penalty.
    But we must accept that team orders will continue so I would suggest to the bosses that the teams at least try to make the codes more entertaining for the viewer. Perhaps something along the lines of 'The geese are flying south, Felipe, the geese are flying south.'
    p.s. I am taking this topic seriously but let's face it, all the teams do it if or when the need arises. It's just some are more blatant about it.

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  • 490. At 10:33pm on 25 Jul 2010, 4StringHell wrote:

    I cant be the only one who thinks this is just more great drama, in a season packed with it. I'm just glad (as I'm sure the team is) that the bad press spotlight is off Red Bull for a change. I do think though that some of these big teams need to bump sporting ethics and pleasing fans, further up their priority list. I mean these recent petty decisions by RBR and Ferrari surely arent worth the bad press, fan backlash and driver angst are they!?

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  • 491. At 10:34pm on 25 Jul 2010, ahowarth007 wrote:

    This whole debate is an absolute joke. Team orders are, always have been and always will be a part of F1: it's a team sport so why that surprises people is beyond me. There's no difference between what Ferrari did and other teams telling drivers to "hold station" or "turn their engines down" when they move in to the final stage of a race. The latter two also effectively prevent racing and manipulate the outcome. No-one seems to complain about this. It is also hypocritical of people to complain about what Ferrari did today but accept what happened in 2007: it is either acceptable or unacceptable. I wonder if the outcry would be quite so big if McLaren had done something similar?

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  • 492. At 10:37pm on 25 Jul 2010, kjm61 wrote:

    The penalty for this kind of behaviour must constitute a deterrent. USD 100K is grossly inadequate. Ferrari pisses on USD 100K for starters in the morning. Ferrari (and any other team) must be banned from the next Grand Prix for this rule to have any effect whatsoever. The problem is that F1 is rotten to the core with financial interests. It has become very similar to watching pro wrestling on TV; a spectacular circus act. BUERK!!!!

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  • 493. At 10:39pm on 25 Jul 2010, Graham Briggs wrote:

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

  • 494. At 10:40pm on 25 Jul 2010, pushbike wrote:

    It was not a bad race but the msg to Massa 'Alonso is faster than you, do you understand' was loaded with alterior meaning.
    And co-incided with an easy pass by alonso . when looking at the screen it looked like massa was a tailender all of a sudden !!
    then the same guy said keep going ... sorry
    Never heard that when there was a problem with speed !!
    All this over shadowed the race. It absolutely dominated the f1 forum and everything abt the race thereafter.
    I would like to see The Ferrari team be given half points for the next two races or maybe banned from next weeks race at Budapest
    It totally marred the proccedings at Hockenheim today.
    It makes a joke of a major sporting race.
    I can honestly say I wont be so keen to watch practise and qualifying and the race at Hungary on TV next week as I did thid week
    It was ugly and ruined it as a TV spectacle.

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  • 495. At 10:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, Sports80Fan wrote:

    so I think the problem is that Alonso didn't appear to be held up a huge amount really.

    It wasn't like he was hounding Massa, so the position swop didn't seem legitimate from that point of view and it can be frustrating for the viewer.

    It may turn out that Alonso has a couple of bad races following this and Massa has some great results which then mean Ferrari end up ruing this decision - i.e. by putting their eggs all in one basket.

    As for Alonso being a child and throwing his toys out of the pram with teh "this is ridiculous" seems a little bit disrespectful imho as its not like he looked like he had a huge speed performance over Massa did he?

    But realistically Massa would need quite a fortune change over 5 other drivers to become world champion which means it is quite unlikely for this season, unfortunately.

    So from that perspective, Ferrari really did the right thing from what is best for them and it IS a team sport.

    You can bet your bottom dollar if it came down to the last race and Button had to let Hamilton through in order for him to win the World Championship (assuming Button could not) no one would blink an eye, well, no Hamilton supporters at least :P

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  • 496. At 10:42pm on 25 Jul 2010, malcF1fan wrote:

    I dont have a problem with team orders in principle but teams should be forced to name their driver order before the season starts and then everyone (fans included) knows exactly where they all stand.

    Fact is there is a rule outlawing it this season. Fact is it only costs $100,000 to breach.

    Small teams should start planning ridiculously illegal upgrades. They can then win and retain their result for $100,000 per infringement required.

    Unfortunately just as individuals such as Alonso are bigger than their team Ferrari are believed by many to be bigger than their sport and so the FIA will dare not use the latest example of law infringement to educate other teams on the consequences of deliberately undermining a sporting spectacle for commercial gain.

    By the way I am pleased I am not a Ferrari sponsor facing the court of public opinion !

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  • 497. At 10:43pm on 25 Jul 2010, Reregina wrote:

    I agree with your blog Benson. And I particularly agree the comments made by Brundle and Coulthard and Schumacher.

    In fact, you don´t need to go back to 2007, last race for example had plenty of "team order" controversy. Horner is a hypocrite. And what about Mclaren coded language to Hamilton and Button in Turkey this year? Has everyone forgotten about this..? it seems so.

    But of course, it´s only when concerns Alonso that everyone feels has a right to slagging him off. Eddie Jordan in particular has venom towards the man. That man´s bias is becoming too tiresome and the BBC should be doing something about it. F1 fans aren´t idiots and not all are Anti-Alonso, like him. Seriously, get over it man!.

    Shame the stupidity of Ferrari with Smedley´s big gob and Massa´s sulkiness (who frankly should be grateful he still has a seat at Ferrari) have tarnished an absolutely fantastic race/weekend by Fernando. Massa is CONSTANTLY (including this last race) outperformed by Alonso and his frustation could cost Ferrari dear. And Alonso doesn´t deserve this.. he just did his job - like it or not anti-Alonso people!

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  • 498. At 10:44pm on 25 Jul 2010, F1Fan wrote:

    Fernado Alonso is not a real champion nor competitor. A champion does not let another driver (Piquet) crash so he can win. A real champion does not quit a team because they will not let him win (Mclaren) and a real champion does not ask his team mate (Massa) to move over so he can win. If you cannot win honourably don’t compete.

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  • 499. At 10:45pm on 25 Jul 2010, Fabbyulous wrote:

    @ Andrew, I always thought Hamilton finished 7th in Brazil 3 years ago ;).

    And team orders happen all the time, it's only that this is Alonso that the story gets so much attention over here, because of that turbulent season Alonso and Hamilton both suffered in 2007.

    Japan 2003 and this same race exactly 2 years ago are examples where McLaren have gotten away with teams orders in the past.

    Fisichella let Alonso through at Melbourne *I think* in 2006 at Renault that was, there are other instances I'm sure further down the grid with the minor teams allowing each other through with a speed advantage.

    This is just a stupid overplayed media topic again, Ferrari shouldn't be fined although despite that I doubt they're too concerned with the consequences they were given.

    Now let's put the matter to bed shall we :)

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  • 500. At 10:46pm on 25 Jul 2010, Mr T wrote:

    Why don't Ferrari just tell all the drivers in the race that Fernando is faster than them? Job done.

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