Ferrari technician in criminal investigation

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Ferrari technical manager Nigel Stepney is under investigation in Italy following a complaint by the Italian team, according to Autosport.

Ferrari’s only comment on the matter was: “Ferrari have taken action against Nigel Stepney, and there is now an investigation.”

The Briton has been with the team since 1992 and was part of the team that helped turn around Ferrari’s flagging fortune of the early 1990s and turn it into the dominant force of this decade.

Stepney remains an employee of Ferrari, although he is currently on vacation and has not responded to the news. However there were strong rumours of Stepney’s discontent at the team last year following the departure of Ross Brawn.

In April former Ferrari employees Mauro Iacconi and Angelo Santini were found guilty of industrial espionage. A Modena court claimed they had obtained unauthorised access to Ferrari’s computer system.

Update @ 22:21, 21/6/07: Reuters has a quote from a Ferrari spokesperson that says: “It is not related to any event, it is related to his behaviour.” Those who can speak Italian can read more here.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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10 comments on “Ferrari technician in criminal investigation”

  1. I knew he’d be in trouble when he said openly that he wanted to leave Ferrari earlier this year. There are some things one just shouldn’t do…

  2. so…anyone willing to speculate what it might be about?

  3. There’s very little detail and tons of questions at the moment. Did he know Ferrari were about to make a move and go on holiday because of it? Or did they wait until he went off on leave to spring it so that he couldn’t defend himself? If he’s done something seriously wrong, why hasn’t he been sacked? It’s all very strange.

  4. ever heard anything like this happening before? it’s a new one on me.

  5. Well, there’s the two that got in trouble in April (see above). Prosecutions are rare. Famously in the 1970s many team members left the Shadow team to form a new outfit, Arrows, and the first Arrows bore more than a passing resemblance to the previous Shadow…

  6. Perhaps something he wrote or put on the Net?

    Either way, it’s sad it’s come to this. He was a key part of the Schumi dream team. Anyone remember what Ferrari pitstops were like before he came in?

    Perhaps it’s the Italianization boiling up again. Should be interesting to see what fellow Englishman Ross Brawn’s next move will be.

  7. I really do not like this. Not so much that it is Nigel Stepney being investigated – though I struggle to find the suggestion that he intentionally sabotaged the team he’s been working for for 15 years credible – but that Ferrari needed to investigate anything. This is going to take a lot of effort in order to uncover the truth, and it’s effort that Ferrari would be happier putting into beating McLaren. Clearly, illicit substances should not be put anywhere near an F1 car, and the culprit must be discovered (whoever that may be), but the fact that it occurred means that Ferrari could well be in trouble in the future. Particularly if Nigel Stepney proves to be innocent…

  8. Ahhh. Is Nigel the one selling Kimmi elephant tranquilisers?

  9. Zened, he doesn’t need those. He’s so quiet, he always seems to be tranquilized. It’s like it’s built into him or something. :p

  10. Well, Kimmi must be asleep: As he sleep walked away from his old team at the worst possible time. What M.S. and Alonso knew last season was kept from Kimmi. And none of them showed the loyalty of Lewis, a ten yearold kid who chooses his F1 team before he is even in GP2 – imba. Soon all will be whining about Lewis winning the way M.S. used to, all the time You guys in Italy need to prepare for a long hard fight back I think. Gief us a shorter wheel based car pls.

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