BBC SPORT Arabic Spanish Russian Chinese
BBCi NEWS   SPORT   WEATHER   WORLD SERVICE   A-Z INDEX    SEARCH 

BBC Sport
 You are in: Sports Talk  

BBC Sport Academy
BBC News
BBC Weather
SERVICES
-------------
LANGUAGES
EDITIONS

Thursday, 16 May, 2002, 10:09 GMT 11:09 UK
Did Ferrari get it wrong in Austria?
Barrichello was ordered to pull over and let Schumacher win
Ferrari drivers and team officials are summoned to appear before the FIA after Michael Schumacher's controversial victory in the Austrian Grand Prix.

Should team orders be allowed?

Have your say

The move follows the Italian team's decision to make race leader Rubens Barichello pull over and hand Schumacher victory at the A1 Ring.

It sparked uproar amongst the spectators, who booed and whistled as the German entered the winner's paddock.

Schumacher leads the Drivers' Championship by 27 points - but his team must now explain their actions to the sport's authorities.

Are Ferrari a destructive force in F1?

Have your say


Does anybody ever complain that when Beckham lays a ball on for Owen to score that it is wrong? F1 is a team sport and there are two drivers representing the team. Schumacher doesn't need the help of his team mate as the previous 57 wins have shown.

Barichello is a support driver, he has no chance of winning F1

Michael Paul, UK

It's because he is the best that people don't like this situation. If Trulli was asked to move for Button to win what would be the British public's response then?
Greg Cross, England

It worries me that because of public opinion Ferrari will be punished. It's a team sport, if this causes people problems, all teams should only run one car.

Going by what I read so far, I guess football results will not stand unless every player on the team scores a goal. Barichello is a support driver, he has no chance of winning F1 even at the start of a season and he accepts this and is paid for his support role to the number one driver.
Michael Paul, UK

Ferrari are making a mockery of the FIA. Unless the FIA decide to act upon the hideous scene in Austria, they must acknowledge that Ferrari are a more dominating body than the FIA itself.

In reality the only person in a position to challenge Schumacher is Barichello and we are being robbed of the opportunity to witness racing and overtaking other than that witnessed during pit stops. This sport is in serious decline.
Ian Minchella, England

One is so ruthless that he controls everything to win, the other is prepared to settle for second best

Michael Hughes, Germany
Sorry but David Coulthard has missed the point. Pacemakers, whether running or cycling are there for a highly specific purpose. Even Roger Bannister's 4-minute mile was constructed on the back of pacemakers.

But Rubens' position is NOT that of a pacemaker. He is a racing driver in his own right. If it had been Barrichello, Button, Schumacher at the start of the final lap, would Ferrari have asked Rubens to drop down to 3rd so that Michael could pick up 2nd and 2 extra points? No way!

The fact that Ferrari still say they did nothing wrong is to snub their fans and particularly their ex-fans.
Peter Morris, UK

There are two bottom lines in GP racing. One is that the car must be great - the manufacturers championship. The second is the drivers championship and the reputation of GP racing is built on the basis that every single driver wants to win more badly than anything else. That is the mystique, that is where you see the very best and that is what we want to see - it is the precondition. Combine the two and you have a heady mixture leave one side out and you cannot be sure that what you are watching is genuine.

That is also why the reputation of Schumacher and Barrichello have been besmirched in different ways; one is so ruthless that he controls everything to win, the other is prepared to settle for second best. Yuck!
Michael Hughes, Germany

It is mad to say that Reubens was 'winning fair and square'. Both drivers were under team orders not to race each other from very early on in the race. Reubens wasn't giving up _his_ first place, he was giving up the place that the Ferrari team was allowing him to have by instructing Michael not to race. The race would have been just a much a fix if Reubens had been allowed to win it.
Mick, UK

If you don't like F1 the way it is, blame the rules, not the teams

Alex Mackay, Singapore
I think the Ferrari fiasco is being blown out of proportion. While I hate the idea that Reubens had his victory taken away, F1 is a business that cost hundreds of millions of dollars. Drivers make millions and the teams must win to be successful. This is no longer a gentlemen's sport. It's a business. In a perfect world Rubens wins, especially with the point lead Michael already had. The FIA should not take away any points and realise the reality of F1 racing created by Bernie.
Bob Goodwin, USA

I find it difficult to comprehend that the majority of your readers want to "punish" Ferrari for what happened at the Austrian GP. For what? They didn't break any rules.

People obviously find it difficult to accept that F1 is a team sport, presumably because there is also an individual driver's championship. The only practical way to stop drivers helping their teammates would be to restrict teams to one car and driver, and that would no doubt be uneconomical.

At least Ferrari were honest about their 'switch'. They could just as easily have faked some sort of overtaking manouevre a few laps earlier. This would be almost impossible to legislate against satisfactorily.

The fact remains that no matter crossed the line first on Sunday, Ferrari took first and second place by a distance. Sure it would have been nice if Michael had let Rubens win, but if this had been the last race of the season and Schuey had needed all ten points to win the Championship and Rubens was nowhere, would there have been the same outcry? I think not. That this was not the last race is irrelevant, and it is naive to think otherwise.

If you don't like F1 the way it is, blame the rules, not the teams. Or go watch cricket. Or something.
Alex Mackay, Singapore

What has happened underlines that Ferrari aren't Gods

Hans Mueller, South Africa
Very wrong. Sport has become less "sporty" because of the money involved. You don't need to win a championship - you just buy it. Rubens was more than entitled to his win. To drive such a race only to have to follow team orders & give up his personal success is a disgrace. It takes away all credibility from the team. Where has the real competition gone?
Paul Ross, Australia (UK ex-pat)

People are blaming Michael Schumacher for the incident on Sunday. It wasn't Michael's fault, although I'm sure he didn't mind winning. All I can say is that if Rubens had a fair chance he'd probably be able to become a world champion too. Michael might be the best driver around, but racing must be able to go ahead.
Beverley Wilson, Wales

What has happened underlines that Ferrari aren't Gods - they are human, and like the rest of us they make mistakes. Similarly, they can learn from such mistakes and thus deserve another chance. 50 years of history and the great achievements by the drivers and team don't deserve to be kicked while down.
Hans Mueller, South Africa

F1 is about racing and the fans. If Ferrari or any other manufacturer manipulates results then the spirit of "the race" disappears. Dock both Ferrari and Schumacher the points and impose a three-race ban on Schumacher. Perhaps then the lesson will be understood.
Roger Barefoot, UK

What has happened to morals, the gentleman's sport and good old fashioned racing?

Aidan D, England

The comparison to the team structure in the Tour de France is valid, but it would certainly make the F1 season more interesting if Ferrari were stripped of their points from the Austrian GP...
Tom Millar, Canada

I am directly involved in F1 as a supplier to one of the main sponsors (sorry I can not divulge who).

Every single person I have spoken to over the last two days is revolted by Ferrari's arrogance and total lack of respect for the fans and other team members, and the overwhelming comment made to me has been, and I quote:

"Michael Schumacher is the highest paid driver and possibly, bar Bernie, the most powerful man - what would Ferrari do if he ignored their orders, sack him? He was more than happy to pass Rubens, and when it backfired he tried to show some remorse".

What has happened to morals, the gentleman's sport and good old fashioned racing? Unless Ferrari are punished with a points deduction and/or race bans then I will be leaving F1 for British Touring cars, Superbikes and any other quality motorsport the BBC will be showing.
Aidan D, England

F1 is in grave danger of destroying its popularity

David Fulton, Isle of Man

If Rubens thinks he will ever win another race whilst with Ferrari he is mistaken. The whole of F1 has taken a massive knock over this debacle. I will never watch another F1 race again.
Jane Ashton, England

I blame Barichello as much as Schumacher and the Ferrari team. He has signed a contract recently, and clearly it has been written into it that he must pull over. Therefore, he is being paid purely to throw races.

He isn't a particularly good driver compared to some of the others, and I doubt whether he would be driving for Ferrari if he had not agreed to this ridiculous charade.
Richard Croft, England

F1 is a sport watched and supported by millions worldwide. It is in grave danger of destroying its popularity if manufacturers are allowed to cynically control the results of the race from the Boardroom.

Leave it to the cars, designers, mechanics and drivers to battle it out on the track fairly. F1 is already in danger of becoming boring to watch because of the gap in performance and scarce overtaking moves. Controlling the result will help reduce its popularity even further.
David Fulton, Isle of Man

It was a lose-lose situation for Michael - what could he have done?

Neil White, South Africa

Sunday's display of 'Ferrari's Philosophy' was disgusting. Rubens proved his worth throughout that entire race, and then to be robbed by his own kind was stomach turning.

For a man that has raced so long and only won one Grand Prix thus far, it must have been a nightmare to receive that call to move over. In retrospect however, it was a lose-lose situation for Michael - what could he have done?
Neil White, South Africa

Michael Schumacher had, until Sunday, never won a race in Austria. Maybe that was the thinking behind the decision. However, he will know that in later years the record books will show him as the winner and nobody will be any the wiser.

I have always admired his racing talent, but after this fiasco his sportsmanship leaves much to be desired.
Malcolm Richardson, Germany

I'd had a bet that Rubens would be on pole and go on to win the race - I would have won £1800. I hope I see Ross Brawn in the street some time soon!
Annoyed, London

Those who bet money on Barichello to win the race should consider legal action against Ferrari for match fixing

Joe Bowen-Thomas, UK

F1 is a joke, Michael Schumacher is a joke. I don't believe that he is embarrassed - the most influential driver in the sport and he felt he could not reject team orders to pass Barichello!

I think that those who bet money on Barichello to win the race should consider legal action against Ferrari for match fixing! Also, Barichello should feel ashamed.

He has just signed a contract accepting that he will take second place to Schumacher, which shows that earning money in this sport is more important to him than winning races. So finally, he too is a joke!
Joe Bowen-Thomas, UK

The Ferrari team, Scumacher and Barichello should all be stripped of their points from this Grand Prix, and the points should be awarded to the lower placed drivers accordingly.

Furthermore, they should be disqualified from driving for at least one Grand Prix, as their behaviour is nothing less than cheating and makes a complete mockery of the sport.
Phil Grossman, UK

People don't realise Formula One is all about the team. They provide the car, which ultimately wins the race. It's a team sport, and the drivers are simply pawns. In the interest of securing both championships, a team should be able to decide how to win their race.
Stuart, N Ireland

I totally support Ferrari's decision

Salim Moledina, Tanzania

I was appalled and saddened that the 'race' could be manipulated so blatantly and with absolutely no good reason. I had a tear in my eye, both in sympathy for Rubens, and in complete shock that this could be allowed to happen.
Elke, UK

The decision by Ferrari was governed by corporate greed, with no respect for the fee-paying spectators. If I had been one of those spectators I'd be writing to Luca di Montezemolo asking for a refund!

The 'sport' needs to get its act together now, as it's turned into a procession. Thankfully, Superbikes on BBC2 was, and continues to be, a lot more exciting!
John B, UK

I totally support Ferrari's decision. I too feel for Barichello, but he is a great driver and he ought to win some races to come. I see a very good team spirit in the Ferrari camp.
Salim Moledina, Tanzania

Team orders were given, and whether they were right or wrong, they were followed. If the boss of a company you worked for told you do something, would you do it? Of course you would - otherwise you would be looking for a new job.

Ferrari have made F1 look like the WWF - orchestrated and fixed

Jenny, England

As for the team being punished, I can't see anything happening, how can you punish a team for playing within the rules? I agree that this type of action is very bad for the sport, and team orders such as these should be banned in the future.

However, F1 didn't loose any of its 'spectacle' on Sunday - it lost that a long time ago.
Brian Taylor, England

They should be ashamed; this once great and exciting sport is turning into a farce. They are forgetting who they are racing for - the fans. Formula One should take action against Ferrari to stop this happening again.
Rob, England

Ferrari have shown what a farce F1 has become. No more exciting, down to the wire championship races, just Schumacher winning with half the season to go.

I used to enjoy sitting down and watching the races but Ferrari have made F1 look like the WWF, orchestrated and fixed. They should be ashamed of themselves.
Jenny, England

Schumacher's lack of courage is breathtaking

Andy, UK

Old Enzo must be turning in his grave. Montzemolo, Todt and Braun have brought lasting discredit to the great prancing horse. Their cynicism and lack of sportsmanship was matched only by their lack of long-term commercial judgement - as reaction of the crowd proved showed.

Schumacher's lack of courage is breathtaking. He is said to be the best driver, but he can't seem to find the brake pedal. His crocodile tears were discredited as long ago as Australia 1994, when Damon won his first championship. After 40 years as a fan of F1, this is the last straw.
Andy, UK

The admission that the Ferrari team control the performance of their drivers is absolutely disgraceful. They are undermining the sport and ruining a tradition.
Alius Parchami, UK

What an absolute disgrace. I have been a long-time fan of F1 racing, but I have to admit that I shall no longer be setting the alarm for 7am on Sundays. Ferrari are ruining the sport.
Paul, USA

What a disgustingly cynical move by Ferrari

Alan Brand, Canada

Ross Brawn had the nerve to say that this was no race, and that the pits were in control all the time - well thanks a bunch pal, you've made us all feel pretty stupid for watching. Remember, no spectators, no sponsors, no money, no motor racing.
Louise, UK

Whilst team orders are a part of F1, there was essentially nothing wrong with what Ferrari did in Austria - even if I don't agree with it. We must remember however, that two years ago at the same race, McLaren pulled the same trick to allow Mika Hakkinen to win.

If team orders were to be outlawed, you would see a rise of Long Brake pedals towards the end of each race in order to achieve the results that the teams want.

In terms of Ferrari ruining F1, it is up to the other teams to catch up, not for Ferrari to slow down.
Simon, UK

What a disgustingly cynical move by Ferrari. I think that, at the very least, they should be docked the team points for this "race". I probably won't notice whatever happens, as I shan't be wasting any more of my time with the fiasco that is F1.
Alan Brand, Canada

It's a sad day for racing when contrived victories are celebrated - it cheapens the overall championship competition

Jerry Ceglio, United States

I am livid at the way that Ferrari told Rubens to move aside and let Schumacher win - it is outrageous that this should be allowed to happen as it is not in the spirit of the race. If the FIA do not ban this type of team order then it will ruin any competition between team mates in formula one racing, and the teams might as well only have one car each!
Rie, UK

I have no problem with team orders, as long as they are applied at the right time and place, but not at the 6th race of the year when one driver already has a massive points advantage over the opposition. I suppose it's beyond hope that the FIA will actually do anything about it. If you want to watch real racing, get a satellite dish or cable and watch CART - not the pre-arranged sham that is F1 in 2002. Shame on you Ferrari.
Derek Parkinson, UK

It's a sad day for racing when contrived victories are celebrated - it cheapens the overall championship competition.
Jerry Ceglio, United States

This result, manufactured by Ferrari, has now totally removed the word "sport" from Formula One. I would urge the boycott of all sponsorship products endorsed by this car and its team. Both cars should now be disqualified
Brian Matthews, England

F1 has developed into the most boring form of motor racing

Ian Crawford, England

What a complete disgrace! Ferrari's team management and Michael Schumacher have destroyed Formula One motor racing as a sport. If you take away the competitive element it ceases to be a sport. Rubens, by his own effort, skill and determination, deserved to win. F1 needs to do something about this or it becomes totally pointless!
Anthony, UK

I agree that Sunday's events are ruining Formula One, and I hope that all major broadcasters, including the BBC, will forward these comments to Bernie Ecclestone.
Polly Fletcher, Canada

Just when people were starting to respect Michael Schumacher, this comes along and proves that the leopard won't change its spots. Sure, Ferrari gave the order, but no-one forced Schumacher to keep his toe down to pass Rubens.
Robert Dodson, UK

F1 has developed into the most boring form of motor racing. Technical aids have taken over from driver's skill, and it's the car, not the driver that wins. F1 has developed into an ego trip for one vertically challenged little man.
Ian Crawford, England

I don't care much for the reputation of Ferrari or F1 at this moment - my feelings are for poor Rubens. He has qualified brilliantly twice in a row; had the first opportunity to win taken away due to technical failure and now his second opportunity taken away by heavy-handed management.
Rohin Hattiangadi, USA

It's an insult to all the people that paid good money to watch this fiasco

Dave Whitbod, UK

This just reminds me why, after attending nearly every British GP from 1968-1992, I can now hardly be bothered to switch on the TV to watch F1. Ferrari beware - fans and sponsors alike will not put up with this sort of rubbish forever.
Brian Eady, UK

What Ferrari did is an insult to all F1 supporters. F1 has ceased to be a competitive sport - a short-term gain for Ferrari and a long-term PR disaster for F1.
Anthony, Netherlands

I am commenting as an "outsider," having stopped watching F1 many years ago. However, I have noted the furore and have to say that the comments by Ferrari are somewhat disingenuous.

Manufacturers are, on the whole, interested mainly in the Constructors' Championship and not the Drivers' Championship, which is something of a side event to them.

From the Constructors' Championship point of view it mattered not who actually won the race, as there would have been a Ferrari one two whatever the result. For Ferrari to claim it was in the interests of the Constructors' Championship is stretching the truth to say the least.

With the money they pay Schumacher, perhaps the tail is actually wagging the dog.
Geoffrey Cummins, UK

Team orders have, and always will be a part of Formula One

Andrew Belton, UK

Ferrari have destroyed this great sport in one cynical move. The so called 'races' have been shown to be a fix and a farce. Who cares now what happens in any other race? I for one won't be watching.
Mike Lloyd, UK

Unfortunately team orders are part of the sport, but I wish they were not. I remember when Ricardo Patresi reluctantly gave way to allow his Williams team mate, and my all time F1 hero, Nigel Mansell to pass - I still thought that team orders were wrong. Maybe now there will be a movement to have them banned, and restore some credibility to F1.
Paul Moss, United Kingdom

Team orders are team orders, like it or not. It is the Ferrari team, rather than the drivers, who should, if necessary, be questioned. Team orders have, and always will be a part of Formula One. At the moment, Ferrari are the best team, and therefore can choose who finishes first.

The onus is on the likes of McLaren and Williams to catch Ferrari, not on the FIA to punish them for doing what every team before them has done.
Andrew Belton, UK

I am shocked, angry, insulted, and in complete and utter disbelief that Ferrari have taken this decision

Jose, UK/Brazil

Schumacher knew exactly what was happening - he only reacted the way he did when he saw the crowd were unhappy. It's an insult to all the people that paid good money to watch this fiasco.
Dave Whitbod, UK

What a farce! F1 More like WWF? At least the wrestling is entertaining! I wonder if Ferrari would like to contact me about reimbursing the £30 bet I place on a Reubens win? Probably not, they'll need all the extra cash for the dry cleaning needed to wash the "rotten" smell out of the laundry.
Steve, UK

I am appalled that this has been allowed to happen again. It goes against the whole ethos of the sport, and I believe that Ferrari should be very heavily penalised for this outrageous act. Fines don't deter the big players in motor racing as money is nothing to them. They should be docked points instead, or even banned from taking part in the next race.
Neil Young, UK

I am shocked, angry, insulted, and in complete and utter disbelief that Ferrari have taken this decision. As a Formula One fan I feel betrayed and saddened that the best driver on the day - Rubens - was not allowed to be the winner of this race. Shame on Ferrari, F1 and Schumacher!
Jose, UK/Brazil

Unfortunately, Formula One is becoming a joke

Richard, UK

After Sunday's appalling display of un-sportsmanlike conduct by Ferrari, I believe the FIA should step in and at very least reverse the result in favour of Rubens Barichello - it is the only fair and moral thing to do. To take no action at all would seriously damage the credibility of the sport.
Bob Partridge, Brazil

Ferrari have made a mockery of the sport. I hope they realise that it is the fans that make the sport what it is, and pay good money to watch. I hope the FIA do something for future races, or they might find a reduction in viewing figures!
Chris Beebe, UK

The best drivers and the best teams win races. Ferrari are the best at present, and it is up to the other teams to adapt and improve, so that they can match them, and not allow them to be able to do what they did on Sunday.
Jon Smith, UK

Unfortunately, Formula One is becoming a joke. It was a good sport to watch a couple of years back, but this kind of behaviour just laughs in the face of the FIA. Rules need to be introduced to prevent this happening in the future.
Richard, UK

It seems that Ferrari's races are now stage-managed by some faceless grey-suited entity sitting in a remote office

Chris B, England

What happened in Austria was a disgrace. Ferrari should be disqualified, not just from the race but the rest of the season. Maybe the Manufacturers should start a rival competition without them! Maybe F1 should switch to all drivers having identical cars, like in Formula Ford. Then we would see who the great drivers really are, instead of which team has the biggest wallet!
Clive N, UK

It seems that Ferrari's races are now stage-managed by some faceless grey-suited entity sitting in a remote office. For years I've cheered for Ferrari, but after that disgusting exhibition my support has ended.
Chris B, England

I have been a motorsport journalist and historian for almost 40 years, and a fan for 50 years. While there will inevitably be much naive chatter about Sunday's events, I must admit that - for the first time since 1982's Belgian GP, when an entirely avoidable start line shambles injured a mechanic 'live' on prime-time TV - I feel real shame at my interest and involvement...thank God it's at arm's length.
Doug Nye, England

Unquestionably, Schumacher is a truly great driver, but he has absolutely no character or integrity. He could, and should, have disobeyed team orders - they would hardly fire him!

Schumacher's gesture on the podium was a little late

John Gardiner

What a great sport Barichello is. To have been denied his second Grand Prix win in such a manner was scandalous, and tarnishes the rapidly diminishing public image of the sport even more.
Trevor Passmore, USA

The decision taken by Ferrari shows a lack of trust in Schumacher to win more races, in the engineers and technicians to maintain their cars competitiveness and a complete lack of respect for their many fans around the world. If FIA condones such behaviour, then why should we bother to watch the races?
Vilson, Brazil

Schumacher's gesture on the podium was a little late. He obviously wanted Rubens to win, but couldn't quite get his left foot to the brake in time to stop himself winning! At least they got the reception from the crowd they deserved.
John Gardiner, UK

I have been watching F1 since 1994, often getting up at 4am (US time). I was disgusted with Ferrari's cowardly move, and I have just cancelled my satellite channel subscription in protest. I don't understand what joy Schumacher will get from winning this championship - he showed today that he does not deserve it.
Rolf Harms, USA

the team should be banned for three races by the F1 authorities

Nigel Peacock, UK

Rubens thoroughly deserved victory, but he was robbed by his own team. Ferrari are a disgrace to motor racing.
Robin Haden, UK

This race just goes to show how mature Rubens actually is. He qualified brilliantly, he raced brilliantly and after all that, he made the choice to step on those brakes at the finish line and let that other guy in. Now that takes guts - helmets off to the Brazilian.
Sam, UK

The actions of Ferrari are disgusting. After the "fix" this weekend, the team should be banned for three races by the F1 authorities. In addition, people should boycott the Ferrari sponsors as a protest.
Nigel Peacock, UK

Schumi and Rubens are paid to race by their team; fundamentally they are employees. The strings at Ferrari are tugged at the top, as they always have been. The move was in the interest of the team; like it or not, the constructors rule the roost.
PLG, UK

Michael, to his credit, recognised the disservice that Ferrari had done

John Austin, UK

If Michael was so upset about the decision, he should not have passed Rubens on the line. He has always said if his team-mate is as fast as him he would race fairly. I have always been a Schumacher fan as I admire his racing, but he has lost a lot of fans with this. It leaves a bad taste.
Nigel Pinder, UK

So all of a sudden Team orders, which have been an integral part of F1 forever, are not acceptable? Are we than going to start rewriting history and award, for instance, Mario Andretti's championship to Ronnie Peterson?
Dwayne Pipe, USA

I feel very sorry for both Reubens and Michael, as neither of them were winners in Austria today. Michael, to his credit, recognised the disservice that Ferrari had done by pushing his team mate onto the podium top spot and passing the winner's trophy. But it is hardly any consolation to the luckless Reubens to see what should have been a well-earned victory given away in a political sham.

I only hope that Reubens takes heart from the support he will undoubtedly get from the real fans of motor racing, and shows the world that he is not just an also ran, but an excellent driver in his own right.
John Austin, UK

Is there any point in watching any more?

Phil, UK

I hope that Ferrari management are happy; they have disgraced the reputation of an F1 team built up by Enzo Ferrari under the ethos of racing. Enzo will surely by turning in his grave today. Fans pay good money to come and see these "races" and they certainly aren't cheap to attend!
Chris Ball, Wales UK

Is there any point in watching any more? When McLaren did this a few years ago, Ferrari moaned about 'dubious' tactics - but it seems to be OK when they do it. Another viewer leaves.
Phil, UK

Alas, in the name of sport, this will be my last F1 GP. Absolutely disgusting.
David laws, England

I don't know how F1 can move forward from this. If they penalise Ferrari now, how to they justify not having done this on countless other occasions. On the other hand, if they don't do anything they betray every fan out there who has become disillusioned with this sport.

It is absolutely disgusting that Ferrari are allowed to get away with this

Chris Evans, Canada

F1 has pandered to Ferrari for years. What is the difference between a gentleman's agreement and the team orders which allow them to treat teams differently? I stopped watching four races ago, despite having been an ardent fan for years. I am fed up of predicable racing and pre-determined outcomes.
Wendy Williams, UK/USA

Schumacher claimed that he was not happy and didn't want to take the victory away from Barichello. So why didn't he just refuse to pass?
Sam Mallinson, England

If I wanted to see a fixed sport, I would have watched the WWF. I think it is absolutely disgusting that Ferrari is allowed to get away with this, and I am seriously thinking of not watching this sport again.
Chris Evans, Canada

In the press conference Schumacher went on about how he wasn't happy about the team's tactics - why then did he pass Barichello? And why was he allowed to manipulate the podium ceremony and the press conference? He was the winner, so he should have been on the top step of the podium and in the middle at the press conference.

What a fiasco by Ferrari; they clearly had no idea what the crowd's reaction would be - Schumacher booed in Austria! Ron Dennis must have been laughing at the sight of a rather large PR cock up.
Michelle Hancox, UK

The entire Ferrari team should be ashamed about what happened in Austria

Matteo, UK
This was an absolute disgrace. F1 can no longer be considered a sport if this sort of thing is allowed to go on unpunished. I believe it to be the team's fault, and not the drivers', who were both obviously upset and embarrassed. Something must be done very quickly by the FIA or F1 will not survive - people will vote with their feet!
Elizabeth da Vall, UK

In reply to Kai (below) who said Schumacher should let Barichello win in the next race - have you ever heard of the cliché "two wrongs don't make a right"? As far as I'm concerned, Ferrari should have their points disqualified for bringing the sport into disrepute. It's a disgrace.
Craig Barber, England

The entire Ferrari team should be ashamed about what happened in Austria today. I thought sport was meant to be about the best winning fair and square, this just proves that if you've got enough money then there is no such thing as fairness in sport.
Matteo, UK

Ralf Schumacher's face as he watched his brother getting out of the car said it all - he was disgusted, as is anyone who cares about F1. If there were any threat at all to Michael's title this year it might be slightly justified, but he'll have it in the bag by July anyway.

All this has done is to offend and irritate Formula One fans

Craig, UK
If Ferrari wanted someone who would always come second to Schumacher, they shouldn't have got someone as talented as Barichello.
Thom Boston, EU

Michael does not need to be handed points as he is the greatest driver of all time. It was evident from the lack of fists being thrown jubilantly in the air that the best driver of all time did not agree with Ferrari's decision.
Neville gale, Canada

It is no good Schumacher laying the blame at the team's door. He is arguably one of the greatest racing drivers of all time at the peak of his form, so surely he is strong enough to refuse to accept the orders?
Matt, UK

There was no need for this to be done - Schumacher has a commanding lead in the Drivers' Championship anyway and Ferrari will still get the same number of points. All this has done is to offend and irritate Formula One fans - I have never before heard booing like that at a Formula One race.
Craig, UK

Barichello should have been allowed to have his rightful share of glory

Hari Vidhyadharan, India

I support Ferrari, but today I felt cheated. Michael will have to work hard to recover his image after this, and Ferrari have done him no favours at all. It's not sport when the best driver of the weekend is told to hand over the victory - a sad day for F1.
Mark Bingley, UK

Why won't Ferrari admit that they only care about one driver and that is Schumacher? Any other team would have let them go at each other provided they didn't take each other out. All I can say is that Ferrari aren't exactly going to be popular and, unless something is done, Formula One could see fans switching to other forms of motorsport.
Nick Foreman, UK

Team orders should be banned! Barichello had a wonderful race, and it is unfair that he should have to play second fiddle to Schumacher. It is ruining the competition of the sport, and I don't understand how Schumacher can accept such treatment and still claim to be number one.
Joanna, USA

Barichello should not have been instructed to slow. The move would have been right if Schumacher was in a neck and neck race with the other drivers in overall standings, but that he is well ahead of the rest, and Barichello should have been allowed to have his rightful share of glory.
Hari Vidhyadharan, India

Ferrari have brought shame to their name, their brand and their history

Peter Morris, UK

What Ferrari did was disgusting. To have such a blatant disregard for racing ethics not only suggests supreme arrogance but a total lack of judgment with regards to what the public are prepared to tolerate.

Their actions are especially damaging in the current economic climate - for how long will multinationals be prepared to sponsor a 'sport' that has become so synonymous with spin and stage management that it makes Alistair Campbell look like an amateur?
Andrew Gallie, UK

Disgusting! Ferrari have brought shame to their name, their brand and their history. Michael alone had the power to overrule the decision. He could have braked sharply at the end of the race and handed the well-deserved victory to Rubens; he did himself no favours either.

Only Rubens has come out of this with his head held high whilst the Ferrari management should hang their heads low. Today, the sport was ruined for me.
Peter Morris, UK

Yet another sickening example that sport is no longer about the best, but rather the wealthiest and the most influential

Charles Hayman-Chaffey, USA- UK National

The actions of the Ferrari team are indefensible. And by passing his team-mate is such a manner, Michael Schumacher has forever tainted his career.
Lee M. Janotta, USA

Even being Brazilian, I don't particularly support Barichello. But he has shown to the world that he is a great sportsman. Having only won a Grand Prix once previously, Barichello drove superbly the whole weekend, outperforming every other racer from start to finish.

A great driver would never act in the way that Schumacher did - he would speak up against the team and let the best man win.
Leo, Brazil

Although the result is a travesty, I think Schumacher was right to ensure that Barichello took the winner's position on the Podium and in the post-race interview. As for Ferrari being a destructive force, I think it would be wrong to dismiss a team that has contributed more to motorsport than probably all the others combined in such a way. Nevertheless, they clearly need to do something about those team orders.
Ade V, UK

In any other sport, Ferrari's actions would be considered cheating

Stephen Delany, UK

I am utterly disgusted at the outcome of the Austrian GP. What the hell is going on in F1? In any other sport, Ferrari's actions would be considered cheating, and they would be liable to heavy sanctions from the sport's governing body.

F1 clearly thinks it is above any popular action. The only language it understands is the withdrawal of advertising and money. This race was not a race - it was a fix. It's about time the fans' voices were heard.
Stephen Delany, UK

This bit of history should immediately be erased. In the next race where Ferraris are 1-2, Schumacher should allow his team-mate to win to set the record straight.
Kai, UK

This is yet another sickening example that sport is no longer about the best, but rather the wealthiest and the most influential.
Charles Hayman-Chaffey, USA- UK National

I feel sorry for Rubens. It's very sad that Michael's world championship is more important than racing.
John Armstrong-Millar, UK

 VOTE RESULTS
Was a $1m fine enough punishment for Ferrari?

Yes
 29.94% 

No
 70.06% 

10309 Votes Cast

Results are indicative and may not reflect public opinion
In-depth guide to the 2002 Formula One season

Ferrari in the dock

Race day

Qualifying session

Pre-qualifying

F1 2002
Links to more Sports Talk stories are at the foot of the page.


 E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more Sports Talk stories

© BBC ^^ Back to top

Sport Front Page | Football | Cricket | Rugby Union | Rugby League |
Tennis | Golf | Motorsport | Boxing | Athletics | Other Sports |
Special Events | Sports Talk | BBC Pundits | TV & Radio | Question of Sport |
Photo Galleries | Funny Old Game | N Ireland | Scotland | Wales