Ferrari blasts 'scot free' punishment

21 June 2013 by Ryan Wood | M

Ferrari's Horse Whisperer has blasted the International Tribunal for letting Mercedes get away 'virtually scot free', despite having been found guilty of breaching the regulations.

Mercedes were reprimanded and suspended from taking part in the Young Driver Test next month as punishment for their part in the 'private' tyre test.

In the column, written by a mystery Ferrari employee, the so-called Horse Whisperer compared the outcome to that of being 'rapped across the knuckles', adding the decision was 'perplexing'.

"Today we learned, that even if one is guilty and in this case that is an indisputable and verified fact, there is always a way of muddling through as best one can. One only has to suggest to the judge what the penalty should be and even better, why not make it something light like a rap across the knuckles.

"It is somewhat perplexing to say the least to see that the guilty party can get away virtually scot free for having derived 'an unfair sporting advantage.'

"Don't tell me that testing for three days on your own at the Catalunya circuit is the same as doing so with nine other teams at Silverstone with a host of young hopefuls at the wheel, in an area where the weather can still be changeable even in the height of summer. And what if this whole incident had taken place after the young driver test, what would have been the penalty then? Would they have been forbidden from holding an end of year dinner?"

Ferrari believe the sport needs to do more to tackle teams which flout the rules, alluding to recent decisions by the FIA in which the governing body found illegal parts on Red Bull's RB8 last year, but instead of punishing them, they were told to remove the offending items for the next event.

"The way things are going in Formula 1 at the moment is becoming boring: you make a mistake, you race with an illegal component, but then you are told to just change it for the next race and we’ve seen what we’ve seen…

"All this reminds the Whisperer that if he ever finds himself running a Formula 1 team in the near future and that he gets off to a difficult start to the season, then all it needs is to organise a nice week of testing at the right moment and then maybe have to skip a later session, by which time, everything could be done and dusted. What do you reckon?"

The column ended with a clarification on Ferrari's own Pirelli tyre test which took place earlier this season - but with a 2011 car.

"Oh, and to those who jabber on about transparency and credibility, the Whisperer would remind them that the rules are very clear: you cannot test with a car from the current year. With those that are at least two years old, you can run when you like, where you like, with any driver you like, dressed how you like, inviting who you like."

Red Bull's Christian Horner was a little more diplomatic in his response to the punishment [read story here].



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