F1 Fanatic round-up: 10/9/2010

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After two days of politics, let’s hope we get three good days of racing, starting with the first two practice sessions today. Don’t forget to join us during each session for the live blogs.

Here’s today’s round-up:


Not enough evidence to punish Ferrari – Jean Todt (BBC)

“Before you say [they] are guilty you have to be able to prove that [they] are guilty.” Contrary to what Todt said the WMSC did find Ferrari guilty. Even so, they avoided punishing them in any meaningful way.

WMSC ignored own investigator?s advice to give win to Massa (Adam Cooper)

“Osterlind?s report also covered the question of sports ethics, saying, ‘Motor racing ought to be unpredictable, as it has been to date. Part of that competitive element is to take equal interest in all competitors. Irrespective of their fitness, talent or position in the race, competitors should be able to rely on themselves for purposes of winning the race without any form of external aid influencing their sporting performance.'” Lars Osterlind is also one of the stewards for this weekend’s race.

Horner: Team orders precedent now set (Autosport)

Horner: “The penalty for what happened at Hockenheim was $100,000. Does that therefore mean that you could do that in the remaining five or six races this year? As we have seen, based on what happened with Ferrari in Hockenheim, then there was ?ǣ other than the financial penalty at the event ?ǣ no effect on their performance. So theoretically if any team was in that situation and wished to move their cars around, or needed to, then a precedent has been set.”

Comment of the day

SkinBinTin sums up the contradiction at the heart of the Ferrari team orders ruling:

They either did the crime, in which they should have lost the points gained at the very least. Or they didn?t, in which case the $100,000 fine should have been reversed.

Ferrari broke the rules, and have pretty much been let off with nothing more than a slap on the wrist, and a license to do it again.

From the forum

I’ve kick-started the debate on comments on the site again to see how happy people are with it at the moment and what could be done to make it better.

Site updates

As you can imagine we?ve had a large volume of comments in the last 48 hours. We?ve also got some kind of problem with the comment filter which is preventing some legitimate comments from being posted which is being looked into.

Happy birthday!

No F1 Fanatic birthdays today. If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

The 2000 Italian Grand Prix was marred by the death of marshal Paolo Ghislimberti following a huge crash at the start of the race.

Before the start there had been concern over the possibility of an accident at the re-profiled and now much tighter Rettifilio chicane. In the event that corner was passed with little incident but several cars collided at the della Roggia chicane. Poor Ghislimberti was struck by debris and killed.

After the race was restarted, Michael Schumacher won and broke down in tears in the press conference afterwards:

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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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  • 40 comments on “F1 Fanatic round-up: 10/9/2010”

    1. Keith. Do you know anymore about the issue with the mobile versions missing link To the desktop version???

      1. Oh I had the problem as well the other day and forgot all about it until just now.

        1. I have the same problem.

      2. I’ve also had that problem on and off, thought it was related to that caching problem Keith was talking about.

    2. Anyody knows what schumy is saying in german? I wanna give him a big hug

      1. “I can’t think of anything to say except thank you to those who made today possible… I can’t think of anything to say.”

      2. Does make you feel different about Schumi, doesn’t it.

        I suppose winning in Monza with a Ferrari, after not winning for quite some races and equalling Sennas record wins at the same time. Al the more because it was another race in Italy, where Senna died years before made him really show the emotions.

        Who knows, maybe he was aware of that acident with the marshal and it added to all of that.

        I would certainly hope we see him on the top step of the podium several times before he calls it quits.

    3. As I mentioned in yesterday’s round up I’ve just had a trip to Monaco… twas as excellent as I expected. Here are a few of my observations:

      o The straight from St Devote to Massenet is damn steep!

      o From seeing how tight the track is I don’t know how drivers can carry so much spped through and Massenet and Casino Square

      o The Mirabeau- Loews- Portier section looks narrowe and twisty enough to be on the San Remo rally!

      o An awful lot of work must go into preparing the streets for the race each year… pretty much all of the harbour front section was covered, there was a cafe on the Nouvelle chicane, and a roundabout and a statue at the inside of St Devote!

      o The curve through the tunnel is really long… and the concrete wall around the outside is ominous…

      o The run down from the tunnel to the chicane is steeper than it looks on TV… if I could watch the GP from anywhere I think I’d choose there

      o The pit buildings aren’t permanent! I thought they would be

      o Where are the steps they use as a makeshift podium?? Me and my friends were planning to do a daft fake podium on them but we couldn’t find them!

      o Prices aren’t quite as extortionate as you’d expect… pints were only €3 at La Rascasse!

      o I never really believed all the talk of Monaco having its own microclimate… it variated from sunny to cloudy, windy, pouring with rain, all within the time it took us to walk the track! Had the GP of been on yesterday it would’ve been some race!

      1. I think it’s right on the Start/Finish. Usually the cars park at the finishing line instead of in the pit-lane and the ceremony is held there, as you can see in this video of Button getting it all wrong last year!


        1. Hmmm… I don’t think that glass box thingy was there actually, maybe it’s another one of the temporary structures they put up for the race. Unless I was just being really blind and missed it

      2. Nice!… i wanna go to Monaco too!!!!!

      3. where did you eat, la rascasse or somewhere else?

        1. I went to the actual La Rascasse bar, just for the novelty of saying I’d been there for a drink! No way I could afford to eat there though, I took a pack lunch!

      4. o The straight from St Devote to Massenet is damn steep!

        Try going up it with a pushchair…

        The run down to Mirabeau is also much steeper (downhill) than it looks on television.

        And quite how so much speed is carried through the swimming pool section defies belief.

        1. Yeh I went to Monaco as well, and I think the podium is a temporary structure, errected prior to each race. There’s a cool bridge that the camera never picks up at the exit of st. devote, casino square actually goes through a car park.

    4. RIP Paolo Ghislimberti. I remember the press conference afterwards and feeling very shocked at Schumacher breaking down.

      1. Although it seems that his breaking down had little to do with Ghislimberti’s death. He broke down after it was pointed out to him that he’d matched Senna’s record. I’m guessing that combined with the marshall’s death probably brought back a lot of emotions from Imola ’94 for him.

        1. Agree. Was Senna’s record more than the marshall’s death.

        2. That’s what I always thought too, but I’ve just found this (by chance on Wikipedia, as it happens!):

          Michael Schumacher has revealed he contemplated retiring from Formula One after the death of a fire marshal during the Italian Grand Prix nine days ago.

          “I really thought about quitting but I think you always do in extreme moments,” he confirmed.


          1. I remember watching that race, and I’m sure Schumachers (surprising) show of emotion was from a combination of the marshals death and Senna’s record.

      2. Magnificent Geoffrey
        10th September 2010, 2:32

        That was the first time I’d ever watched a racing fatality live. I was ten years old and I remember thinking ‘wow, that was a spectacular crash!’. A few minutes later, they cut to a shot of someone performing CPR on a marshall – that sudden, unexpected feeling of dread I felt at that moment will stay with me for a very long time.

        What confused me back then was that everything just restarted, like nothing had happened. I had imagined that something so terrible would warrant the entire event being cancelled or at least some form of recognition of what had just happened, but no. They all just got on with the restart as normal.

        After Graham Beveridge was killed the following year in Melbourne, I was again surprised about how little a deal it seemed to be. I also never quite got over how easily Villeneuve and Ralf managed to cope with the fact that their stupid accident had resulted in someone being killed. When drivers perish while racing, everyone reacts in an appropriate and understandable manner. When a marshall is killed, I don’t see that same sense of grief and mourning. The Formula 1 paddock is full of very bizarre people indeed.

        1. Well, I don’t think drivers should feel guilty about something like this. It is terrible, but it’s not like they go out trying to crash their cars. And in the event they do crash, they can’t do anything about what comes off their cars and where it goes.

          1. ” but it’s not like they go out trying to crash their cars”
            Unless your Nelson Piquet

    5. I just listned to that video of Todt telling us there was not enough evidence. Then i reread the official statement by the FIA WMSC from yesterday. They do not really fit.
      Now, having also read the blog post by Adam Cooper, i think it fair to say, that
      1. Todt failed the test, he seems to be too glad to bend to the Ferrari view of this.
      2. the WMSC made a complete mess of this by not handing any further punishment.
      I think the suspended threath of taking points away and having Alonso finish behind Massa might have been OK to show FIA means it with its rules, it takes away the gained advantage, while on the other hand not influencing the WDC battle any further at this point of time.

      Verdict for Todt: More subtle yes, more consistant and impartial, NO.

      1. Pretty much spot on the same as I feel about it.

    6. I want to say something slightly different on the whole Ferrari row and this was apparently from the WMSC. I think it may have been taken off but it can still be found in full in some places…

      “The Reporter considers that Ferrari’s argument relating to the fact that Mr Fernando Alonso was faster than Mr Felipe Massa appears not to hold up. Indeed, a few laps prior to the contentious overtaking, Ferrari’s drivers reduced their engine speed at the request of their respective race engineers. Then Mr Fernando Alonso increased his engine speed without Mr Felipe Massa being informed. Mr Fernando Alonso was therefore benefiting from a definite performance advantage over Mr Felipe Massa in the moments preceding the contentious overtaking”

      I just wanted to say “Ha!”. If that is true and I mean “if” because nothing is said for definitie in there then Massa was quick, he still has the speed to win and put himself in a position and I do like Alonso but I just wanted to say that.

      1. Well, since it is based on the Ferrari telemetry, I see little reason to doubt it – apparently that was from the report of the investigator of the facts. I wonder how Massa feels about the team now, and if he will feel that maybe he should have looked at Webber in Turkey.

        His team seems to have taken that Turkey incident as inspiration, doing much the same but deciding not to risk Alonso being as incapable as Vettel or Massa being unpredictable like Webber by leaning on Massa to let him past, something Red Bull couldn’t do successfully with Webber.

        But it does show that Massa indeed had the speed of Alonso in that race – does he do better at high downforce races? Sad for Ferrari, and Massa – now it seems very unlikely he will be back to ’08 form again.

        1. He won’t have the same trust in the team which can be very damamging if Ferrari don’t handled it properly.

          I’ve no doubt that Massa can come back stronger again though. He hasn’t been on it this year but that doesn’t mean he can’t come back stronger especially if he likes the Pirelli tyres better than the current Bridgestone’s he’s struggled with. To beat Alonso across a full season though will take something very special

    7. “Horner: “The penalty for what happened at Hockenheim was $100,000. Does that therefore mean that you could do that in the remaining five or six races this year?”

      That’s the thing though, we already know that the Team Orders rule is so arbitrary that it can be ignored at will (and with no repurcussions) as soon as one driver is mathematically out of the running for the championship. A couple more races and we’ll probably see Vettel helping Webber (or the other way around) and it won’t matter to anyone.

      We’ve already seen team orders from other teams this year (Jensen being told not to pass Lewis in Turkey after their initial scuffle; Vettel getting the only new wing at Silverstone), but arbitrarily everyone seems fine with that, even though it clearly could potentially interfere with a race result and therefore is against the letter of the rules.

      For me, that’s what makes it a totally stupid rule as written, and it either needs to be clearly worded or dropped completely.

      1. The rule is there to stop abuses like Austria 2002. It was never intended to punish occasions like China 2008. But you can’t write the rules to reflect every different situation. So you make a blanket rule to apply to the absurdities like Hockenheim with the understanding that when China-like switching occurs a blind eye is turned. Or are you seriously claiming, after all the decisions in 2008, that they just didn’t want to punish McLaren for telling Kovalainen not impede Hamilton’s progress in the Hockenheim race?

        It’s only “stupid” because no-one really sees to understand why it’s not literally applied in every situation. You never heard a single Hamilton fan claim that the “you must only use the track” rule should be abolished because it’s only punished in the context of cutting corners.

        PS: After Monaco 2007 the precedent was established that it’s also okay to tell your drivers to hold station,. Furthermore, after the 2010 Turkish Grand Prix it was found Button had only marginally more fuel than Hamilton, so he did indeed have to cut back severely.

        1. Regardless of prior precedents, it’s just too open to interpretation IMHO. In a couple of races, when Massa is out of contention, it will be totally fine for Ferrari to do exactly the same thing and no one will bate an eyelid, and there lies the absurdity.

          And it is “stupid” because it’s not applied cohesively in every situation. It’s applied arbitrarily by the stewards, by the WMSC and by the fans watching. Leaving the rule as it is written would leave us open to controversy in the future, and that’s not good.

          It is “stupid”, because we have the current farce of thinly veiled messages (“he is faster”, “the cat is out of the bag”, whatever) and predetermined tactics deciding races. Just have it out in the open, jeez. If a team wants to treat a decent driver like dirt, that’s their prerogative; but don’t expect much team harmony and don’t expect much interest in joining from the world class drivers.

          We all know what joining Ferrari means, go someplace else for team equality (although Mclaren, Red Bull, Mercedes, even HRT are all probably not the best bets).

          1. No, it won’t be fine, because if things go like they seem to be going, regardless of the switch, Alonso is now unlikely to get the WDC, thus making it just a way to demotivate Massa further for this season, leading to less WCC points for the team.

            1. Well, that’s Ferrari’s problem really then isn’t it! *shrugs*

          2. You’ve totally missed my point for the convenience of your own argument.

            It isn’t applied inconsistently. It’s just not applied literally. There is an understanding and precedents that dictate when the stewards get involved and when they don’t. Funnily enough, most of the time the stewards don’t get involved, the vast majority of fans aren’t outraged either.

            Let’s have it out in the open – does it need to be more open? Ferrari were caught when trying to use code words; people aren’t idiots, they can see what goes on. It’s not how blatant the order is given but the circumstances surrounding the event.

            So Ferrari should be allowed to rig things because they’re Ferrari? Codswallop.

            1. If it’s not applied literally, then why was it applied here? It wasn’t technically a team order, no one ordered Massa to move aside, but the stewards deemed it as such and so did the fans, probably because it looked pretty awful. But I’m sure it happens all the time, but only when it’s plainly obvious is it applied; so instead we’ll just have teams using even more subtle coded messages or “rigging” the result before the race.

              And to me, only applying it when the ontrack result looks bad is too arbitrary and even more farcical than what we saw in Germany.

              And it’s hardly rigging things, it’s a team making a decision based on what they think will benefit them in the long run. Chances are it won’t benefit them, but they will have to deal with the consequences in terms of team morale and future loyalty issues from Massa or whoever is the next 2nd driver. Like I said, Ferrari’s problem.

              And I’m saying Ferrari should be given any special dispensation because of their history or their nature, I’m saying that Ferrari should be able to ask their drivers to do whatever they like because they are a *team* taking part in what should be a *team* sport, just like everyone else should!

              Why treat these entities as teams at all times, except at the very specific moment when the two come together on the track?

            2. Oops :S

              “And I’m saying Ferrari should be given any special dispensation ”

              Of course, I meant to say that they shouldn’t be given any special treatment!!!

            3. If it’s not applied literally, then why was it applied here?

              Because it’s the very situation the rule was designed for.

              And it’s hardly rigging things

              We get a lot of non-English speakers on this site so pardon me, but do you know the definition of “rigged”?

              It’s a team sport

              The logical conclusion of that is to award the WDC to whichever of the Constructors’ Championship winner’s drivers scored more points. The team provides a platform for the driver to win; it has no right to tell other drivers what to do. If a team-mate wants to help, let him, but it’s very clear Massa didn’t want to in this situation.

              Why treat these entities as teams at all times, except at the very specific moment when the two come together on the track?

              So if one driver earns a drive-through, both cars should have to do it? If a driver wins the race, surely his team-mate should get the trophy and points too? Should all drivers on the grid line up side-by-side with their team-mates, according to which one qualified higher? You only have to take one step before the logical absurdities present themselves; all in the justification of a form of team orders that has no place in the sport.

            4. Because it’s the very situation the rule was designed for.

              Then why not write it as such? “Team orders, or suggestions that seem to most people as good as orders, that affect a race result are not permitted, especially if they are made during a race and looks particularly bad.” It’s probably not written like that because it sounds dumb and arbitrary, and having this as an unwritten rule is surely even more absurd.

              We get a lot of non-English speakers on this site so pardon me, but do you know the definition of “rigged”?

              =D Yes, I do understand the definition of “rigged”.

              And I presume you are aware of the concept of “context”? In my objective opinion, which forms the basis of my argument, the drivers are effectively tools that a team uses; therefore swapping them around on the track or disadvantaging one driver to the advantage of another is fairgame in my, personal, opinion, and this happens all the time I’m sure.

              Now rigging a race á la Singapore 2008, now that’s a different kettle of fish entirely, although I can tell you’d probably throw that at me as a counterargument at some point!!!

              If a team-mate wants to help, let him, but it’s very clear Massa didn’t want to in this situation.

              Perhaps, but don’t forget this is a driver that joined Ferrari to play second fiddle to Michael Schumacher. And was also able to wear the boot on the other foot during 2008. I’m sure he’s well aware of how things work at Ferrari.

              So if one driver earns a drive-through, both cars should have to do it? If a driver wins the race, surely his team-mate should get the trophy and points too?

              You appear to have taken me a little too literally there :) The singular aspect of the sport is the interesting thing about an otherwise team sport, and distinguishes motorsport from football, rugby et al. The *team* has the goal of getting a driver to the top of the championship, they have two drivers they can get there but only one can actually do it; it should be up to them how they use their two drivers to get there. Do they follow this year’s Mclaren model and let them both go for it 100%, albeit reasonably carefully controlled (arguably the better if results this year keep coming in), do they follow the Red Bull “we’ve got a favourite, but we can change our mind” model, or the Ferrari “we’re pretty sure we know who’s best, prove us wrong” model. Team orders are already part of all three strategies this year, and all three have caused some controversy. Only one has been punished, but c’est la vie.

    8. I only find team orders offensive if it alters the race winner.

      Doesn’t seem to bother me if a team wants to swap positions between 2nd and 3rd onwards (unless I’m a fan of 2).. it’s kinda like they’ve lost the day and they’re just minimising their losses. I accept that.

      But a grand prix victory? It just cheapens it. It leaves me feeling cheated.

    9. Am I supposed to be banned from F1F? Because when I use my normal email I haven’t been able to comment, but if I use another email of mine, I can comment ;/

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