Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Trust the reds not to fall in line


Agreed Michellin screwed up big time but come to moments before the race. We needed a race , for the sake of f1. We needed a chicane for the sake of safety.

Nine teams agree on a way forward and the one team that spoils it all is…yes, Ferrari. They’re not to blame for the debacle, but they are to blame for the compromise solution not going through. A chicane could spoil their victory? And as a result they come away from the race with 18 points. Jean Todt was grinning on the grid and you know why.

The team feel no shame at testing more than all the others so the other teams won't have been surprised.

It’s odd, too, that for the first time we get to hear Ferrari’s pit radio. Why don’t we hear it in the other races – the Championship leaders, Renault, made theirs available in Canada, a really crucial race for them.

Finally, even when there are just two cars at the front, they won’t let their cars race to the line. Rubens and Michael could have had a humdinger over the last 15 laps but it was 2002 all over again. Fall in line

So how come Michael Schumacher was allowed to challenge Rubens on the last.lap of the Monaco Grand Prix?

Hidden Agendas and double standards!


Race Director Charlie Whiting, Ross Brawn’s drinking buddy released a letter that he got from Michelin with some smart answers as to why they couldn’t use different tyres on Sunday.

But he’s changed the rules for Bridgestone prior to a race so we’ve been here before. It's surprising nobody’s questioned why Whiting changed the tyre rules at the beginning of the 2003 Brazilian GP.

Back in 2003 you were only allowed to take one wet tyre to races, so you had to make your mind up before the event. Bridgestone arrived at Interlagos with their legendary intermediate tyre that was quite good in wet and mixed conditions. Michelin had a full wet that could run in more rain.

When the heavens opened before the race, Whiting delayed the start because the Bridgestone runners wouldn’t have been able to make it round safely. It was clearly Bridgestone’s fault for not bringing a full wet tyre, but as the argument has gone this weekend – they knew the situation…

After delaying the start the field was then sent round Interlagos behind the Safety Car until enough water was taken off the circuit. Had they released the field when it was suitable for the Michelins on full wets, then Fisichella would never have won the race in his Jordan and Kimi Raikkonen may well have got the win.

Nobody complained because it was a safety issue. Fast forward two years and Whiting is not prepared to compromise in another safety situation. This interpretation of the rules when it suits them makes F1 fans deeply suspicius - it's like there was an agenda here from the FIA.

Corner 13 - Ralph crashes and so did Formula 1

The chaos , discontent and the rot that lies at the core of f1 was displayed for public view at Indianapolis as schocked fans watched a 6 car farce take place. For a sport that prides itself in its milli second accuracy and efficiency , it was a black day. Michelin were responsible for the fiasco that was dutifully propogated by everyone else. The worry frowns began as early as in friday when Ralph crashed at corner 13 - where else - prompting questions about tyre wear. When Zonta spun later , the question of safety arose. Unfortunately for Michellin , they could'nt find the reason for tyre wear - a suspicious claim.

Prompted by fears of driver safety , Michellin made unreasonable demands like putting a chicane at corner 13 or letting them use the barca spec tyres against the rules. When FIA refused , as expected , Michellin asked the teams not to race. The teams agreed. As coulthard pointed out it is a shame that the beareaucrats and the directors couldnt sit together and come to a consensus. It reveals the discontent that has been brewing for quite some time in F1 and has taken the world a step closer to the rival championship series that major teams are threatening to run.

Whatever the reasons , the truth was that irate fans had to watch a 6 car non-race that proceeded to the only climax possible , a ferrari 1-2. Amid boos and water bottle missiles Michael schumacher claimed his first victory of the season, however farcical it may be.The 2005 championship has been thrown wide open now with Alonso under more and more threat. All said and done , the fact the nine teams out of ten with the only exception of ferrari agreed for the chicane highlights the proxy war thats been going on for sometime ; the ferrari against the others. There are no losers in this except the sport itself.