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Page last updated at 12:44 GMT, Monday, 26 July 2010 13:44 UK

Jordan wants team orders rule ditched after Ferrari row

Formula 1 highlights - German Grand Prix

Highlights - German Grand Prix


Former team owner Eddie Jordan says the rule banning teams from giving orders to their drivers that affect the outcome of a race should be dropped.

Ferrari were fined $100,000 for appearing to give Felipe Massa a coded order to allow Fernando Alonso through to win Sunday's German Grand Prix.

The rule was introduced in 2002 after Rubens Barrichello gifted a win to then Ferrari team-mate Michael Schumacher.

"It's a nonsense," said Jordan. "It needs to be repealed."

Ferrari's actions at Hockenheim have divided opinion in Formula 1 circles, with the Italian team coming in for heavy criticism from the likes of Red Bull chief Christian Horner.

Seven-time world champion Schumacher, who infamously benefited from Ferrari team orders when he overtook Barrichello metres before the finish line in Austria in 2002, supported his former team's behaviour.

PAST TEAM ORDERS INCIDENTS
Jerez 1997: McLaren order David Coulthard to let Mika Hakkinen past to win
Australia 1998: McLaren order Coulthard to let Hakkinen past to win
Belgium 1998: Jordan order Ralf Schumacher not to race Damon Hill for the lead
Austria 2002: Ferrari order Rubens Barrichello to let Michael Schumacher past to win; he does so on the run to the flag
Monaco 2007: McLaren order Lewis Hamilton not to challenge Fernando Alonso for the race win
Brazil 2007: Ferrari manipulate Felipe Massa's pit stop toput Kimi Raikkonen into the lead so he can win the world title
Germany 2008: Heikki Kovalainen lets McLaren team-mate Hamilton through so he can win the race following an error in team tactics
Singapore 2008: Renault order Nelson Piquet to crash to cause a safety car period that helps Alonso win
China 2008: Raikkonen hands Massa second place behind Hamilton so he is in a better championship position heading into the final race

On top of the fine - which was the maximum the stewards were allowed to impose - the team has also been referred to the sport's governing body, the FIA, which has the power to impose further sanctions, such as a points deduction or a racing ban.

Ferrari insisted the incident at Hockenheim was "a driver decision" but opted not to appeal against the fine.

Jordan, who had regularly given team orders during his time at the helm of his Jordan Grand Prix outfit between 1991 and 2005, was furious that Ferrari had breached the 2002 rule regarding team orders and suggested they had done so by seeking to disguise their instructions to Brazilian Massa.

"Every team has to have team orders and now they are just cloaked over as a guise," he told BBC Radio 5 live. "But fundamentally the regulators have to sort that out.

"It has to go the world council and it has to be signed off. Ferrari probably thought they were above that and yesterday they found out that they weren't."

Massa was leading with 18 laps to go when race engineer Rob Smedley told him: "Fernando is faster than you. Can you confirm you understand?" - to which the driver responded by letting Alonso through on Turn Six moments later.

ANDREW BENSON'S BLOG

"Ferrari believe the best way to win the championship is for Alonso to be the main driver, but it was the way it happened," added Jordan. "It was a nonsense and the way they handled this was appalling."

Spaniard Alonso's win took him to within 34 points of championship Lewis Hamilton, who has 157 points. Defending champion Jenson Button, Hamilton's McLaren team-mate, is second with 143 points, while Red Bull duo Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel are equal third with 136 points.

Ferrari's tactics were criticized by other teams, who were quick to flag up perceived foul play.

Horner told BBC Sport: "That was the clearest team order I've ever seen, especially when we've got a team apologizing to a driver."

Horner said the furore surrounding the incident was damaging for the sport.

"It's a great shame for Formula 1 that the race was manipulated to give one driver a victory over the other," he told Autosport. "The only losers today are Formula 1."

McLaren boss Martin Whitmarsh plans to hold private talks with Ferrari to give his views on the incident.

Eddie Jordan tracks down Ferrari team principal Stefano Domenicali

Jordan goes in hot pursuit of Ferrari boss

Declining to comment directly on the rival team's actions, Whitmarsh stated Hamilton and Button would remain free to race against each other.

"Ferrari were quick and we did what we could - and they raced how they raced. That was not a new approach from Ferrari, was it?" said Whitmarsh.

Button added that it was alarming to see Ferrari resort to such methods so early in the season.

"Personally I think team orders in Formula One are wrong, in any motor sport category, although sometimes they are inevitable," the McLaren driver commented.

"We all want to win, and I know that every team wants to win, both the constructors' and drivers' championships.

"But they have to give both their drivers the same opportunity to do so. This was very early in the season. How early is it going to start in the future?"

Lotus Racing chief technical officer Mike Gascoyne said Ferrari should have made more effort to disguise the instructions to Massa.

"The bottom line is if you are going to do it then do so far more cleverly than they did," said Gascoyne.

"Obviously it is a team sport and you have to get the best result for the team, in particular when you are at the front and racing for a championship.

"But it is clear the fans feel cheated by it when you do it like they did, which was just ridiculous."

My decision to let Alonso pass - Massa

My decision to let Alonso pass - Massa



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see also
Clumsy Ferrari expose flawed rule
26 Jul 10 |  Formula 1
Piquet's crash in Singapore
16 Sep 09 |  Formula 1
Classic F1 - German Grand Prix 2008
07 Jul 09 |  Formula 1
Classic F1 - Chinese Grand Prix 2008
14 Apr 09 |  Formula 1
Ferrari fined but result stands
25 Jul 10 |  Formula 1
Alonso secures controversial win
26 Jul 10 |  Formula 1
German Grand Prix race results
24 Feb 10 |  Results
McLaren need more pace - Hamilton
25 Jul 10 |  Formula 1


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