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DATE News (chronologically)
07/30/10
f1
Latest F1 news in brief  
  • Ferrari issued Massa team order three times
  • Domenicali votes 'yes' to scrap team order ban
  • Ex-McLaren man Fry wearing Ferrari uniform in Hungary
  • Still no decision about Raikkonen's F1 future
  • Sutil says options 'open' as Force India slumps

Ferrari issued Massa team order three times
(GMM)  Felipe Massa received three team orders before he moved over for Fernando Alonso at Hockenheim, it has emerged.

Germany's Auto Motor und Sport made the claim, as the controversy about prohibited team orders continues to rage days later in the Hungaroring paddock.

The report said Alonso, who was later heard on the radio to say the situation was "ridiculous", began to complain to the Ferrari pitwall about Massa's pace shortly after his pitstop.

The team replied that it could do nothing, so Spaniard Alonso, who turned 29 on Thursday, dropped back nearly four seconds.

His engineer Andrea Stella told Alonso he was worried about the growing gap, to which Alonso reportedly replied: "No problem, I will close up".

It was this pace relative to leader Massa that moved Ferrari to issue the team order.

But some media have portrayed Alonso as a bully and complainer, suggesting that his reputation has been negatively dented by the affair, which could cost him the support of the spectators.

But he told reporters in Hungary: "Of course it doesn't affect me, not at all.  I don't think anything has changed for me or that anything will come back to me.

"Today when I arrived, the airport was full, also the hotel was full of people cheering for us, and these are the fans I saw so far," added Alonso.

He said if the shoe was on the other foot, he would also play the team game.

"If the conditions were the same, with the tires not working correcting etcetera ... I would surely do the same, the team is the most important thing," Alonso said.

Meanwhile, Massa was fending off claims that - particularly in his native Brazil - his reputation is in tatters.

"People believed in him," said Brazilian journalist Livio Oricchio.  "He was considered a winner and thousands of fans saw him as a future champion.

"This image is gone," he added.

Domenicali votes 'yes' to scrap team order ban
(GMM)  Ferrari boss Stefano Domenicali has admitted he would like to see formula one overturn its ban on team orders.

Germany's Bild newspaper said the Italian answered with a clear 'yes', adding: "F1 is a team sport."

Currently, article 39.1 of the sporting regulations explicitly prohibits team orders, but the subject is now the topic of hot debate, given Felipe Massa's reluctant move to let Fernando Alonso win the recent German grand prix.

Peter Sauber agrees with Domenicali: "Team orders should be allowed, because in formula one, ultimately the interests of the team are at the fore."

Mercedes' Ross Brawn added: "We understand that the fans are unhappy.  But the teams need to work together with the FIA for a solution that takes into account the competition as well as the interests of the team.

Christian Horner's stance against team orders is well known, and Toro Rosso's Franz Tost agrees: "To have a fair sport, team orders must be prohibited."

HRT's Colin Kolles adds: "Team orders must stay banned.  Otherwise the sport aspect is damaged."

Interestingly, McLaren declined to answer Bild's team orders survey.

The bosses and drivers of the British team have been fervently referring to the philosophy of fairness and ethics within McLaren, but others recalled Hockenheim 2008, when Heikki Kovalainen moved over for Lewis Hamilton in much the same way as Massa did for Alonso.

Kovalainen, now driving for Lotus, did not want to talk about that incident in Hungary.

"I don't remember that," said the Finn.  "For me, there's no point in going into the past, actually.  I'm just here to race with Lotus and that's all I can say."

Like McLaren, bosses for Lotus, Williams, Force India, Renault and Virgin also declined to answer Bild's survey.

F1 chief executive Bernie Ecclestone insisted he is happy with the publicity being generated by the saga.

"Everyone is talking about formula one -- what more could you want?" the 79-year-old told Blick newspaper.

Ex-McLaren man Fry wearing Ferrari uniform in Hungary
(GMM)  Pat Fry is attending his first grand prix with a Ferrari uniform this weekend in Hungary.

The Italian team announced earlier this year that the Briton was set to start work as assistant technical director, after a long career with McLaren.

Still no decision about Raikkonen's F1 future
(GMM)  Kimi Raikkonen has once again refused to shed any light on his plans for 2011.

It is expected that the 2007 world champion intends to stay at least another year in the world rally championship.

But Citroen recently announced that Sebastien Loeb and Sebastien Ogier are staying put, without mentioning the future of Finn Raikkonen, who has also been linked with a return to formula one.

When asked on Thursday ahead of the Finnish rally if there is any news about his plans, the 30-year-old answered: "No, not yet.  We have some decisions to make and I haven't done that yet.

"I can honestly say that I do not know," he added in a separate interview.

FIA president Jean Todt told Turun Sanomat newspaper that he respects Raikkonen's decision last year to move to rallying.

"When he wanted a new challenge, it was very courageous to pick rally.  But F1 is a constant pressure so I can understand why Kimi wanted to do something else," said the Frenchman.

"What I can say is that if the reigning champion Jenson Button, or whoever wins this year's title should go to rallying, he would not be at the same level of Kimi in their first season," added Todt.

Both Raikkonen and Todt refused to comment on the Ferrari team orders scandal.

"I'm not in formula one, so I don't care what's happening there," said the Finn.

And Todt added: "We will deal with it in due course, but I don't want to talk about F1 now."

Sutil says options 'open' as Force India slumps
(GMM)  After a couple of recent backwards steps in Force India's progress, Adrian Sutil still sounds committed to the team for 2011.

The German has been linked with next year's currently vacant Renault seat, but until very recently he has been pleased with the progress of Force India.

However, the VJM03 was not competitive last weekend in Hungary, which has added fuel to rumors that Sutil might finally leave the team after four seasons.

"Yeah, still open," he said in Hungary when asked about his options for 2011.

"I have got an option with this team here again.  But we will see what's going on.

"At the moment I don't see any other team, so I would be happy to stay here another year," added Sutil.

To the German press, he admitted some concern with Force India's recently stagnating form.

"Until now we've always been going forward and now we've just lost a little bit of that.  But we know why," he said.

"Mainly it's because of the (blown) diffuser," added Sutil, ahead of the first testing of Force India's solution at the Hungaroring.

"If everything goes well, we can race it here already.  But actually it was planned for Spa," he is quoted by Auto Motor und Sport.

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