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Whitmarsh on team orders
Having been questioned over team orders, Martin Whitmarsh had this to say. “It is very easy for me to get pious that we don’t do it, and condemn others – but I don’t want to do that. Anyone can turn around to us and say in 2007 ‘you threw away a championship: you didn’t give team orders, you could have favoured either driver and they would have been world champion'”.
“That is the truth, but it doesn’t feel right that we could have sat arbitrarily in an office in Woking and said: ‘right, we are going to have Alonso as a world champion or Lewis as a world champion’. There is a part of me that says, ‘bugger we should have had the championship’, but overall I don’t feel right about it.
If I was in the same situation I hope I would do the same again.”
Well nothing like telling us how easy it is to do something and then demonstrating it eh Martin?
Mateschitz supports Webber?
Alan Webber is a most likeable chap and he was on the TV screens following the podium presentation in Malaysia and he quickly dismissed the idea that his son was inferring he would consider quitting the team. He is now confirming this to be true and that Mark has the full support of Mateschitz.
Speaking to Australia’s ABC today he said, “I’ll say this, I read the text (message) that Mr. Mateschitz sent Mark and I think Mark’s position is assured”. On the other hand Alan appears to believe that Vettel is in trouble with the team.
“The team aren’t altogether happy with Sebastian I’m afraid. I know [they] aren’t happy with him at all. Up and down the pit lane I even had FIA people come up to me and say they felt sorry for him [Mark]. Up and down the pit lane Mark hasn’t lost any credibility at all, it’s probably Sebastian [who] has lost an awful lot.”
Likeable or not, I’m afraid Alan has got this one wrong. Vettel will get off scott free or at best with a token reprimand and the team will hope Webber doesn’t find ways to ensure the extra 7 points Seb stole in Sepang are not 25 points lost later in the year.
Horner ‘weak’ and with no ‘balls’
Flavio is the latest to wade in and give his six-penneth on all matters of the bull. He told RAI radio, “Vettel is the boss there. If there was a manager with balls, he would have had them switch positions again. The problem is that there are two people with different ideas on the pit wall, with Helmut [Marko] behind them doing the talking with Mateschitz, so you understand they are all scared.”
I’m sure TJ13 readers will tell Flav whether he has historic precedent for his next assertion, “Normally the team principal goes on the podium at the first race win of the season. Christian didn’t even have the strength to get on the podium – because they’re terrified with a driver in charge instead of the team manager. You’d first go yourself if you win the championship or the first race, and after that you’d send race engineers or your technical director.
The fact that Christian didn’t go on the podium after scoring a one-two says a lot about his weakness compared to the others.”
TJ13 readers in the poll so far suggest by 4:1 that Vettel should be sanctioned by the team, but I’m afraid the signs are already clear how Red Bull will deal with this. They have banged on and on about how it is their team work and togetherness that gives them the edge over their rivals, so Sebastian will apologise to the people at Milton Keynes.
Vettel’s post race explanation of ‘I heard but I didn’t understand’ line – will become a claim that Vettel heard but didn’t compute the ‘multi 21’ code he was given because driving a Formula 1 car is a pretty hectic thing with lots and lots going on. Mmm.
The problem with this is that there were other radio calls that were not in code which were crystal clear in their intent like the one when Horner told him to stop being ‘silly’. Further, Horner told Martin Brundle of SKY late on Sunday night that they had been telling Seb for 3 laps to hold station.
Vettel will continue the self justification refusing to apologise for winning a race ‘for the team’ and join Horner in the chorus that sing songs of how Webber’s ‘previous’ disregard for team orders in Silverstone and Brazil makes everything ‘all square’.
Will Horner care that the F1 world see him as impotent and the puppet of Marko and Vettel? Probably not. He’ll draw comfort from the 3 WDCs and 3 WCCs he has overseen and retrench into the Milton Keynes machine to urge the troops onwards and upwards for the 2013 fight.
The rhetoric will be that Red Bull are much maligned by the FIA and the other teams. Ask Sir Alex Ferguson about the power of instilling a siege mentality within the troops, it’s a trick he has used time and again when things are tight.
Christian is no Ron Dennis or Sir Frank Williams and even Dominicali when cut, bleeds not just blood, but blood that is precisely the Maranello shade of red blood. Horner is merely a well paid manager of someone else’s company and somebody else’s brand. He and Red Bull are ‘new money’ whilst the others are old; they have the scars of their F1 traditions and a pride in what they stand for as both as teams and organisations.
You may have missed this: Webber cuts right across Vettel after chequered flag in Sepang