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 Post subject: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:00 am 
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I have been thinking about the Massa gearbox incident at Austin and to be honest, my opinion of it is quite simple..yes its technically legal, but the penaltyisn't tere so you can breaka team-mates gearbox in order to fix the grid (chances are they never thought anyone would do it, its like a crank call done by a local DJ in my area who phoned up Nintendo to complain he broke the TV playing Wii sports golf with the golfball, they told himhe wasn' supposed to use a golf ball but he made an oddly valid point, it doesn'ttell you thatyoucan not ) thats where the "but its withinthe rules" arguement goes out the window, yes it is.. technically... but lets be honest did they expect anyone to deliberately damage a car to incurr a penalty, usuall teams are falling over themselves o get te stewarts NOT the penalise them

THAT is my problem with that situation

but it got me thinking, has there been other times when a move or action is technically legal, but not actually in the spirit of the rule ( aka using the letter of the law against the spirit of the law )


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:12 am 
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Team orders were illegal for Germany 2010, "Fernando is faster than you"...

Another stretch of the rules is when Mclaren were running 1-2 in a SC train and everybody was going to jump into the pits, they needed to stack for the pit stops, the second Mclaren slowed down in the train knowing that nobody could overtake him, so he wouldn't have to wait for the box to clear. Next race there was a rule about keep within a certain distance to the SC.

Crashgate is the biggest example, is there a rule against deliberately crashing. There probably is.

There are many if you go onto the technical side. The double diffuser, this season interpretation of the exhaust blown diffuser etc etc.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:12 am 
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It's unsporting if and when the powers that be declare it to be so.

This happens all the time with F1 and any other sport. If it ain't written down, it doesn't mean they said you can't do it.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:13 am 
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On the track, Lewis helping out Jenson in Germany this year was a little unsporting. Lewis was a lapped car but overtook Vettel and interfered with his race which allowed Jenson to pull away or was it close in. One of the two.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:15 am 
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I can also remember a few questionable SC re-starts. I think it might be Fisichella and Alonso, but by the time they crossed the win running 1st and 2nd, the gap was over 2.5 seconds.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 3:05 am 
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In any organized activity, if you don't have regulations things turn into instant anarchy. So in the case of the FIA and Formula One, they attempt to contain excessive activy by way of the regulations, which do change as circumstances dictate. It's nice and admirable but following the spirit of the rules is unenforceable. Imagine if the criminal code was just one sentence "OK everyone, be nice to each other", the legal system would fall apart in one hour.

So the regulations replace the spirit of the rules, they do not co-exist in parallel. And if there isn't a clause saying you can't do this, or make a certain part, it will be done, or built. This is part of the DNA of Formula One, the constant innovation and pushing the rules.

I'm quite sure that when the first wings showed up, some people complained it was against the spirit of the rules. Every time something new shows up, whether it's wings, or refuelling, or ground effects, fuel injection, or the F-duct, the people who wrote the rules never anticipated it happening or being invented. So it's examined and then new rules get written to either allow it, control it, or deny it. But if people start getting hurt feelings every time someone shows up with a new innovation or attempt some unique strategy they are going to suffer their entire lives.

If people are all upset that Ferrari broke the seal on Massa's gearbox to incur a penalty, maybe they ought to petition the FIA to change that regulation so that a deliberate action in the interests of strategy carry a more severe penalty. The rule was written to apply a penalty in the interests of cost control and reliability. Ferrari were clever enough to apply this rule in benefitting Alonso, a purely strategic move.

I have two suggestion, to contact the FIA and petition for a change in the regulations, and second, to read the book authored by Mark Donohue and Paul Van Valkenburg, "The Unfair Advantage".


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:40 am 
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I'm just glad they didn't get Felipe to "destroy" anybody's race.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:10 am 
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Rules are there for a reason. If its within the rules its perfectly fine. I dont see anything wrong with what Ferrari or RBR did. No matter how many rules they make there will be loopholes and no matter how many loopholes they plug there will always be 1 person in every team who will find an even faster way to go from A to B, which others will find unsporting or illegal till the FIA clarifies it.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:33 am 
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Kind of like when you buy your big screen TV from BestBuy, watch the big game, and return it within the stipulated time. People sometimes do it, but no one I'm friendly with, I hope.

I was dismayed with McLaren's behavior in 2007 when they tried to take away Kimi's championship several days after it was over, but there was nothing illegal about that. Ditto Ferrari's behavior this year on more than one occasion.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:34 am 
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lamo wrote:
On the track, Lewis helping out Jenson in Germany this year was a little unsporting. Lewis was a lapped car but overtook Vettel and interfered with his race which allowed Jenson to pull away or was it close in. One of the two.



It was neither of these

Lewis was told not to hinder Jenson as he was about to lap him but Lewis didn't like the idea of being lapped by JB so he overtook vettel to get back onto the same lap

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:36 am 
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I agree, it was unsporting but also what I'd have done in Ferrari's position.

It seems like another one of these situations where you end up with an odd rule in the rule book to counter someone doing this again. If everyone played to the spirit of the rules all the time, we would never need them. But humans are competitive, so someone will always try to gain an advantage in any way they can. I assume this will be altered in the coming year, I can't see them keeping this "loophole" unless they think no one will every use it again - it was a pretty specific set of criteria that made it useful.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 9:30 am 
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mac_d wrote:
I agree, it was unsporting but also what I'd have done in Ferrari's position.

It seems like another one of these situations where you end up with an odd rule in the rule book to counter someone doing this again. If everyone played to the spirit of the rules all the time, we would never need them. But humans are competitive, so someone will always try to gain an advantage in any way they can. I assume this will be altered in the coming year, I can't see them keeping this "loophole" unless they think no one will every use it again - it was a pretty specific set of criteria that made it useful.



:thumbup:

Plus the penalty is only for breaking or damaging the seal. It has to be there to prevent teams being sly. Or else you get a situation where they can open it, have a look and say we did nothing. (Basically what they did with Massa) . They get a free closer look to see if it's damaged. They would be doing it every chance they got.

A deterrent means increasing the penalty. But then the fans bitch about the 5 places bad enoug has it is. Imagine people start taking 10 places because of it.

Only other way I can see is dropping the reg altogether.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:06 pm 
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lamo wrote:
Another stretch of the rules is when Mclaren were running 1-2 in a SC train and everybody was going to jump into the pits, they needed to stack for the pit stops, the second Mclaren slowed down in the train knowing that nobody could overtake him, so he wouldn't have to wait for the box to clear. Next race there was a rule about keep within a certain distance to the SC.

I don't think this is unsporting, they are not gaining an advantage - they are just preserving the track position they had earned that the safety car would otherwise had nullified. The safety car is NOT meant to be a penalty, or to reset the times between the cars on the track, it is designed to make the track safe for the marshals to work on. There is nothing in the rules that says that a team running a 1-2 has to lose that advantage when they pit.

The rules were changed not to stop teams from maintaining their advantage, but because it was deemed that taken to extremes that allowing cars to build up a gap like that could be used for unsporting or dangerous behaviour. For example, the second car could let the front car get a 30 second head start before a restart. Or not by compressing the field the snake would stop meaning the marshals didn't get a full lap of no traffic to clear the track during.

What McLaren did is still allowed, only in the pit lane. McLaren did this - I think in Australia - when they entered the pits Hamilton slowed right down to give the team enough time to clear Button so he did not have to wait.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 1:52 pm 
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maninblack wrote:
It's unsporting if and when the powers that be declare it to be so.

This happens all the time with F1 and any other sport. If it ain't written down, it doesn't mean they said you can't do it.


This happens all the time? Where does it exist where the team hurts one driver not just one position for his teammate but a hand full?

Massa was pulled out of the top 10. I've been watching F1 since the mid 90's and I don't think that has ever happened before.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 2:42 pm 
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In principle I consider Massa's gearbox saga identical to crashgate. They took advantage of two common racing situations such as a driver changing the gearbox or creating a Safety Car situation after a crash, and INTENTIONALLY used them with the MOTIVE of benefiting a particular driver at the expense of others. I emphasized intention and motive because without them, both incidents are totally legal. No other driver has incurred more than a 5 grid penalty for changing the gearbox and no other driver has been penalized for crashing on his own (without involving any other car) and causing a SC as a consequence if it was clear they had no intention or motive to do so. Matter of fact, Piquet Jr. wasn’t penalized in the race for causing the SC. However, intention and motive are very important and a complete game changer. They were the reason Schumacher was excluded from the 1997 championship or why he was penalized for Rascasse and they were the reason why Piquet Jr. and others were banned when proof of their intention and motive came up.

What makes it even worse is that Ferrari made it clear why they were taking the penalty. And FIA did nothing about it. And many people not only agree with the action but they even find it genius.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 5:20 pm 
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Greg92 wrote:
In principle I consider Massa's gearbox saga identical to crashgate. They took advantage of two common racing situations such as a driver changing the gearbox or creating a Safety Car situation after a crash, and INTENTIONALLY used them with the MOTIVE of benefiting a particular driver at the expense of others. I emphasized intention and motive because without them, both incidents are totally legal. No other driver has incurred more than a 5 grid penalty for changing the gearbox and no other driver has been penalized for crashing on his own (without involving any other car) and causing a SC as a consequence if it was clear they had no intention or motive to do so. Matter of fact, Piquet Jr. wasn’t penalized in the race for causing the SC. However, intention and motive are very important and a complete game changer. They were the reason Schumacher was excluded from the 1997 championship or why he was penalized for Rascasse and they were the reason why Piquet Jr. and others were banned when proof of their intention and motive came up.

What makes it even worse is that Ferrari made it clear why they were taking the penalty. And FIA did nothing about it. And many people not only agree with the action but they even find it genius.

You do realise WHY CrashGate was considered such a terrible set of actions by those involved right? Because if you think it is identical in principle to Massa's gearbox change then I don't think you do.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 6:48 pm 
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Alienturnedhuman wrote:
Greg92 wrote:
In principle I consider Massa's gearbox saga identical to crashgate. They took advantage of two common racing situations such as a driver changing the gearbox or creating a Safety Car situation after a crash, and INTENTIONALLY used them with the MOTIVE of benefiting a particular driver at the expense of others. I emphasized intention and motive because without them, both incidents are totally legal. No other driver has incurred more than a 5 grid penalty for changing the gearbox and no other driver has been penalized for crashing on his own (without involving any other car) and causing a SC as a consequence if it was clear they had no intention or motive to do so. Matter of fact, Piquet Jr. wasn’t penalized in the race for causing the SC. However, intention and motive are very important and a complete game changer. They were the reason Schumacher was excluded from the 1997 championship or why he was penalized for Rascasse and they were the reason why Piquet Jr. and others were banned when proof of their intention and motive came up.

What makes it even worse is that Ferrari made it clear why they were taking the penalty. And FIA did nothing about it. And many people not only agree with the action but they even find it genius.

You do realise WHY CrashGate was considered such a terrible set of actions by those involved right? Because if you think it is identical in principle to Massa's gearbox change then I don't think you do.


You do realize what IN PRINCIPLE means, right? Because if you think they're different principles because of the consequences then I don't think you do.

Drunk driving is the same whether you're in a busy street or in a godforsaken road.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:11 pm 
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greg,

If you are going to apply that reasoning to everything, I suspect all of us should be in jail. I suspect that there are few in this forum who have never done anything wrong. Ever found a pen in your pocket that you didn't buy or have given to you? Never made a "questionable' deduction on your income tax? or some other minor infraction?

Well, if so, the you/we are no better than the person who robs a bank as in "principle" both are thieves. Alien was right, there is no way you can compare Crashgate with Massa's seal. To suggest otherwise is not fair or constructive.
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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:03 pm 
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Greg92 wrote:
Alienturnedhuman wrote:
Greg92 wrote:
In principle I consider Massa's gearbox saga identical to crashgate. They took advantage of two common racing situations such as a driver changing the gearbox or creating a Safety Car situation after a crash, and INTENTIONALLY used them with the MOTIVE of benefiting a particular driver at the expense of others. I emphasized intention and motive because without them, both incidents are totally legal. No other driver has incurred more than a 5 grid penalty for changing the gearbox and no other driver has been penalized for crashing on his own (without involving any other car) and causing a SC as a consequence if it was clear they had no intention or motive to do so. Matter of fact, Piquet Jr. wasn’t penalized in the race for causing the SC. However, intention and motive are very important and a complete game changer. They were the reason Schumacher was excluded from the 1997 championship or why he was penalized for Rascasse and they were the reason why Piquet Jr. and others were banned when proof of their intention and motive came up.

What makes it even worse is that Ferrari made it clear why they were taking the penalty. And FIA did nothing about it. And many people not only agree with the action but they even find it genius.

You do realise WHY CrashGate was considered such a terrible set of actions by those involved right? Because if you think it is identical in principle to Massa's gearbox change then I don't think you do.


You do realize what IN PRINCIPLE means, right? Because if you think they're different principles because of the consequences then I don't think you do.

Drunk driving is the same whether you're in a busy street or in a godforsaken road.

Firstly, in principle they are not the same.

Ferrari did not break any rules when they opened up the seal on Massa's gearbox. The reason they decided to do it was a loophole to get out of the more extreme option of starting him from the pitlane by changing the set up of his car, which is an option that will always be in the regulations. Doing the gearbox change just meant he dropped 5 places instead of to the back, and you can be sure, given how important the clean side of the grid was that Ferrari would have put Massa to the back if the gearbox thing wasn't an option. Alonso would always have benefited regardless of the rules, the rules ust meant Massa didn't take such a big hit.

Crashgate on the other hand broke several rules. The rules will state in come form or another that deliberately crashing is against the rules. It is also against the rules to deliberately put the marshals and other drivers in danger.

You only have to look at the scale of the cover up, the heads that rolled as a result of Crashgate and also, more fundamentally to the point, that there weren't any changes to the Safety Car rules as a result, to see these are totally different. What changed was the FIA introduced rules to enable them to ban Team Principals. The FIA is not seeking to ban or sanction Ferrari over the gearbox change - they might change the rules to stop a team from doing it again but they won't punish Ferrari because they did not break any rules.

Renault, Briatore and Symonds all got punished as a result of Crashgate but the FIA did not change the rules. Why not? Because deliberately crashing to bring out the Safety Car was already illegal.

Secondly - even if were to take it that what Renault did in 2008 was not illegal and only unsporting - it was still fundamentally different because in Singapore their actions endangered the lives of all of the other drivers and the marshals on track to remove Piquet's car. Ferrari endangered no one with Massa's gearbox change.

So, in principle the same thing? No, not anywhere close.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:45 pm 
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When one looks at the regulations for car design, I'd say that it's only the letter of the law which is followed and not the spirit, to such an extent that the spirit of the rules is entirely irrelevant. From double diffusers to exhaust-blown diffusers to F-ducts - there are numerous examples of a clever interpretation of the regulations benefiting a team. Given that cost-limiting factors do not make it feasible for teams to be given a free hand in making smaller, lighter and more powerful engines and experimenting with alternative fuels, we are faced with a situation where most of the teams' innovative efforts are focused on pushing the spirit of the existing technical regulations. So much of these new car developments could fall under the category of "legal but unsporting".

If you're only referring to the sporting aspect of F1 though, then one can look at any action which carries a somewhat mild penalty, or none at all. For instance, in the Malaysian GP in 1999, Schumi did a fantastic job in slowing down Mika Hakkinen behind him while Eddie Irvine built enough of a lead in the front to be able to make his pit-stop at will. There is nothing illegal about this, but one could argue that Schumi prevented a true fight between the championship contenders with his actions and was thus unsporting (though I view this as good teamwork, more than anything else).

One extreme hypothetical situation I can come up with is if there is a safety car and everyone has done their pitstop except the race leader, who also happens to have his teammate behind in say 5th position. Since the driver is almost certainly going to lose the lead under normal circumstances, the teammate could perhaps jump the other cars during the restart and take 2nd place. The teammate then slows down the other cars massively for the few laps before he necessarily has to take his drive-through penalty. It's a far-fetched situation, and is difficult to orchestrate, but if the situation is desperate enough, one could attempt it.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 8:56 pm 
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Obviously, nobody ever thought that the 5 place grid penalty would be used to take advantage and allow a team to artificially promote their driver to the cleaner side of the track.

Now that they know this is how it can be used the orginisers need to either change the penalty or change how it's administered. I thought I'd come up with a way but after trying it out it didn't work.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 10:46 pm 
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flyboy10 wrote:
Obviously, nobody ever thought that the 5 place grid penalty would be used to take advantage and allow a team to artificially promote their driver to the cleaner side of the track.

Now that they know this is how it can be used the orginisers need to either change the penalty or change how it's administered. I thought I'd come up with a way but after trying it out it didn't work.


What about giving the Stewards leeway to impose a 6-grid place penalty instead of 5 on any car if they believe the intent is to move the penalized car's team-mate to a more favourable side of the grid?


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:06 pm 
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bod72 wrote:
flyboy10 wrote:
Obviously, nobody ever thought that the 5 place grid penalty would be used to take advantage and allow a team to artificially promote their driver to the cleaner side of the track.

Now that they know this is how it can be used the orginisers need to either change the penalty or change how it's administered. I thought I'd come up with a way but after trying it out it didn't work.


What about giving the Stewards leeway to impose a 6-grid place penalty instead of 5 on any car if they believe the intent is to move the penalized car's team-mate to a more favourable side of the grid?



I highly doubt this situation will ever come up again, so I doubt the FIA will put in a rule to stop it. Besides, if you give the stewards or whoever, the ability to decide a 5 OR 6 place drop, it starts to defeat the point in the system. You can't write a rule which will be able to cover this sort of circumstance. How do you decide whether there was intent or not? You can't. There will always be the possibility for a scenario like the Ferrari gearbox thing to occur, no matter how you word it.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:47 pm 
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EXCELLENT POSTS Alienturnedhuman & zoomsthru!

To the OP, you are wrong in thinking it was unsportsmanlike. It's no different than when in football a team hikes the ball 5 yards back to the opposite hash marks to line up better for a field goal or when a team takes a penalty just to eat time off the clock to leave the opponent less time to run less plays that could lose them the game. It's all strategy.

Ferrari's move was an intelligent calculation of strategy. They took the penalty on Massa to move up their title contender up a position which moved him form the less grippy and "dirty" side to the clean line where he had a grip advantage. As a result it shuffled others to the dirty side where there is less grip affording Alonso a slight advantage in order to be higher up coming into and out of turn 1. In the end it was a beautifully orchestrated strategy on paper and as we all saw, Alonso launched perfectly and made the most of it.

For un-sportsman like I'd refer to Red Bull's overly flexible wing which lowered the wing to the track enough (past the allowed minimum clearance) to reduce mass amounts of drag under acceleration giving them a competitive advantage. The reason this is different is that the FIA rules clearly stated that the bodywork is to be static and their front wing/end clearly was not. So, when the teams protested and the FIA cleared Red Bull of any wrong doing, some of the teams like Ferrari began developing their own flexi (more like floppy in Ferrari's case) wing and the FIA had no leg to stand on and resorted only to warn Ferrari that they need to be careful the wing isn't so flexible that it makes it unsafely fragile but could not forbid Ferrari to run it as I'm sure they likely wanted to because it then meant they'd have to renege on their prior ruling on the Red Bull wing. This year Red bull's floor CLEARLY broke the rules when the floor of the car had an opening just in front of the rear wheels which is explicitly not allowed according to the rules. Teams complained to the FIA and in this instance they could not allow the RB to continue and ordered them to change it for the next event.

In Ferrari's case, they realized that with the FIA's "no tolerance" policy on the seals they place on the engines and transmissions being broken, they would be able to exploit the rule to get their man on the clean side and purposely incurred the infraction, AND they told the FIA they were doing it. Huge difference.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:02 am 
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Would Monaco 2006 have been unsporting is Schumacher had just driven over the limit with a very high chance of an accident rather than just park it?
Win-win. If he actually makes it round the lap he would secure pole, more likely he will end up in the wall and bring out the red flag. I can never understand why he made such a bad job of that. All he needed to do was what Kimi did a year later and break the front suspension on the barrier.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:13 am 
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Bobafett wrote:
but it got me thinking, has there been other times when a move or action is technically legal, but not actually in the spirit of the rule ( aka using the letter of the law against the spirit of the law )

RB's car multiple times this year? oh yeah, not quite, it was actually ruled illegal at various times.

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 3:53 am 
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The Massa gearbox thing in austin is pretty genious if you ask me.....

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 9:46 am 
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Cozz wrote:
maninblack wrote:
It's unsporting if and when the powers that be declare it to be so.

This happens all the time with F1 and any other sport. If it ain't written down, it doesn't mean they said you can't do it.


This happens all the time? Where does it exist where the team hurts one driver not just one position for his teammate but a hand full?

Massa was pulled out of the top 10. I've been watching F1 since the mid 90's and I don't think that has ever happened before.


The main problem for any fan of F1 is that they become deluded into thinking that the WDC is a sport. What you have existing as a form of sport is the WCC, the Newey cup. With his own in house cup for his favourite driver. The trouble is that the secondary prize of the WDC has been elevated beyond that of the WCC and why you see Mutley with a full chest of medals and Dick Dastardly combing over the monobrow.

Ferrari and their team are doing nothing illegal, but if you expect any person with an IQ above 10 to believe "The letter to the FIA was in no way intended to undermine the legality of the race result." I would go as far to say that the only reason for the letter to the FIA was to undermine the legality of the race result.

So what does this mean for the "sport", does it really matter? At the present time there is the obvious distaste but no real alarm bells sounding. Add on a few seasons for the contracts to contain the #2 clause and that might not be the case. Teams will readily see that team orders will be most effective when applied from race 1, voiding the WDC from 3-5 decent racing seats that would have added to the original spectacle. Then the complications with a #2 driver who's sole purpose is to aid his team which can only lead to #2 drivers being blue flagged when in front of drivers without team orders, otherwise the consequences and protests become too great.

Shame on you Ferrari.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 9:54 am 
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I thought something similar at the time, but I think this whole issue wouldn't have even existed if there wasn't such a huge difference in quality between either side of the grid. That's what should really be looked into.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 11:10 am 
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Cozz wrote:
maninblack wrote:
It's unsporting if and when the powers that be declare it to be so.

This happens all the time with F1 and any other sport. If it ain't written down, it doesn't mean they said you can't do it.


This happens all the time? Where does it exist where the team hurts one driver not just one position for his teammate but a hand full?

Massa was pulled out of the top 10. I've been watching F1 since the mid 90's and I don't think that has ever happened before.


I mean it happens in sports in general. Not just in F1. Competitors and their teams do things which may not be standard practice in their sport, but are not written down in their league rules as being illegal. The people in charge would have to clarify stuff like that, if it creates enough bad PR to do so.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 4:27 am 
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Alienturnedhuman wrote:
Greg92 wrote:
Alienturnedhuman wrote:
Greg92 wrote:
In principle I consider Massa's gearbox saga identical to crashgate. They took advantage of two common racing situations such as a driver changing the gearbox or creating a Safety Car situation after a crash, and INTENTIONALLY used them with the MOTIVE of benefiting a particular driver at the expense of others. I emphasized intention and motive because without them, both incidents are totally legal. No other driver has incurred more than a 5 grid penalty for changing the gearbox and no other driver has been penalized for crashing on his own (without involving any other car) and causing a SC as a consequence if it was clear they had no intention or motive to do so. Matter of fact, Piquet Jr. wasn’t penalized in the race for causing the SC. However, intention and motive are very important and a complete game changer. They were the reason Schumacher was excluded from the 1997 championship or why he was penalized for Rascasse and they were the reason why Piquet Jr. and others were banned when proof of their intention and motive came up.

What makes it even worse is that Ferrari made it clear why they were taking the penalty. And FIA did nothing about it. And many people not only agree with the action but they even find it genius.

You do realise WHY CrashGate was considered such a terrible set of actions by those involved right? Because if you think it is identical in principle to Massa's gearbox change then I don't think you do.


You do realize what IN PRINCIPLE means, right? Because if you think they're different principles because of the consequences then I don't think you do.

Drunk driving is the same whether you're in a busy street or in a godforsaken road.

Firstly, in principle they are not the same.

Ferrari did not break any rules when they opened up the seal on Massa's gearbox. The reason they decided to do it was a loophole to get out of the more extreme option of starting him from the pitlane by changing the set up of his car, which is an option that will always be in the regulations. Doing the gearbox change just meant he dropped 5 places instead of to the back, and you can be sure, given how important the clean side of the grid was that Ferrari would have put Massa to the back if the gearbox thing wasn't an option. Alonso would always have benefited regardless of the rules, the rules ust meant Massa didn't take such a big hit.

Crashgate on the other hand broke several rules. The rules will state in come form or another that deliberately crashing is against the rules. It is also against the rules to deliberately put the marshals and other drivers in danger.

You only have to look at the scale of the cover up, the heads that rolled as a result of Crashgate and also, more fundamentally to the point, that there weren't any changes to the Safety Car rules as a result, to see these are totally different. What changed was the FIA introduced rules to enable them to ban Team Principals. The FIA is not seeking to ban or sanction Ferrari over the gearbox change - they might change the rules to stop a team from doing it again but they won't punish Ferrari because they did not break any rules.

Renault, Briatore and Symonds all got punished as a result of Crashgate but the FIA did not change the rules. Why not? Because deliberately crashing to bring out the Safety Car was already illegal.

Secondly - even if were to take it that what Renault did in 2008 was not illegal and only unsporting - it was still fundamentally different because in Singapore their actions endangered the lives of all of the other drivers and the marshals on track to remove Piquet's car. Ferrari endangered no one with Massa's gearbox change.

So, in principle the same thing? No, not anywhere close.


Alien you're giving too much focus to the dangerous aspect and you're ignoring the race fixing aspect. By your post it would seem that if the move was safe it would be alright. If Piquet Jr. somehow managed to spin, slide back on track and stop the car there blocking it, creating no danger for anyone would you consider it ok? Would you? Forget the dangerous aspect and what is it that makes the two situations different? Sure, FIA considered Crashgate dangerous later but i thought it was a bogus charge just to justify the harsh penalty even though they didn't need to. Anyway, this is another topic and doesn't matter for our discussion because the WMSC punished the guilty parties ALSO because of the danger but not ONLY for that and this is why I consider both instances identical on principle because they both operated on the premise of artificially recreating a common racing occurrence with the purpose of benefitting one particular driver while impeding others.


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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 7:23 am 
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metamorphomisk wrote:
The Massa gearbox thing in austin is pretty genius if you ask me.....

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 Post subject: Re: Legal but unsporting
PostPosted: Sun Dec 02, 2012 1:15 pm 
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Greg92 wrote:
Alienturnedhuman wrote:
Greg92 wrote:
Alienturnedhuman wrote:
Greg92 wrote:
In principle I consider Massa's gearbox saga identical to crashgate. They took advantage of two common racing situations such as a driver changing the gearbox or creating a Safety Car situation after a crash, and INTENTIONALLY used them with the MOTIVE of benefiting a particular driver at the expense of others. I emphasized intention and motive because without them, both incidents are totally legal. No other driver has incurred more than a 5 grid penalty for changing the gearbox and no other driver has been penalized for crashing on his own (without involving any other car) and causing a SC as a consequence if it was clear they had no intention or motive to do so. Matter of fact, Piquet Jr. wasn’t penalized in the race for causing the SC. However, intention and motive are very important and a complete game changer. They were the reason Schumacher was excluded from the 1997 championship or why he was penalized for Rascasse and they were the reason why Piquet Jr. and others were banned when proof of their intention and motive came up.

What makes it even worse is that Ferrari made it clear why they were taking the penalty. And FIA did nothing about it. And many people not only agree with the action but they even find it genius.

You do realise WHY CrashGate was considered such a terrible set of actions by those involved right? Because if you think it is identical in principle to Massa's gearbox change then I don't think you do.


You do realize what IN PRINCIPLE means, right? Because if you think they're different principles because of the consequences then I don't think you do.

Drunk driving is the same whether you're in a busy street or in a godforsaken road.

Firstly, in principle they are not the same.

Ferrari did not break any rules when they opened up the seal on Massa's gearbox. The reason they decided to do it was a loophole to get out of the more extreme option of starting him from the pitlane by changing the set up of his car, which is an option that will always be in the regulations. Doing the gearbox change just meant he dropped 5 places instead of to the back, and you can be sure, given how important the clean side of the grid was that Ferrari would have put Massa to the back if the gearbox thing wasn't an option. Alonso would always have benefited regardless of the rules, the rules ust meant Massa didn't take such a big hit.

Crashgate on the other hand broke several rules. The rules will state in come form or another that deliberately crashing is against the rules. It is also against the rules to deliberately put the marshals and other drivers in danger.

You only have to look at the scale of the cover up, the heads that rolled as a result of Crashgate and also, more fundamentally to the point, that there weren't any changes to the Safety Car rules as a result, to see these are totally different. What changed was the FIA introduced rules to enable them to ban Team Principals. The FIA is not seeking to ban or sanction Ferrari over the gearbox change - they might change the rules to stop a team from doing it again but they won't punish Ferrari because they did not break any rules.

Renault, Briatore and Symonds all got punished as a result of Crashgate but the FIA did not change the rules. Why not? Because deliberately crashing to bring out the Safety Car was already illegal.

Secondly - even if were to take it that what Renault did in 2008 was not illegal and only unsporting - it was still fundamentally different because in Singapore their actions endangered the lives of all of the other drivers and the marshals on track to remove Piquet's car. Ferrari endangered no one with Massa's gearbox change.

So, in principle the same thing? No, not anywhere close.


Alien you're giving too much focus to the dangerous aspect and you're ignoring the race fixing aspect. By your post it would seem that if the move was safe it would be alright. If Piquet Jr. somehow managed to spin, slide back on track and stop the car there blocking it, creating no danger for anyone would you consider it ok? Would you? Forget the dangerous aspect and what is it that makes the two situations different? Sure, FIA considered Crashgate dangerous later but i thought it was a bogus charge just to justify the harsh penalty even though they didn't need to. Anyway, this is another topic and doesn't matter for our discussion because the WMSC punished the guilty parties ALSO because of the danger but not ONLY for that and this is why I consider both instances identical on principle because they both operated on the premise of artificially recreating a common racing occurrence with the purpose of benefitting one particular driver while impeding others.

Crashgate was not an incident of race fixing. Let's assume that there was no danger caused by their actions and they were technically not against the rules - under those circumstances what they did was to manipulate a loop hole in the rules to stack the deck in their favour. They didn't fix a result.

An incident of race fixing would be a secret agreement between teams to allow one of the party to achieve a result. The closest example to this I can think of is Williams and McLaren having an agreement to allow them to win a 1-2 in Jerez 1997 once it was certain Villeneuve had won the championship. Although, this is a little different still - basically, the McLarens were faster due to Villeneuve's damage and it was not worth him fighting and then retiring from an incident. Also, it relied on race circumstances, but it is pretty close to 'race fixing' although it is still fundamentally different to match fixing in other sports where you have a head to head between two sports teams/players and they agree to arrange a specific result - or like what John Higgins was videoed agreeing to in Snooker, of throwing very specific frames of snooker so people could put bets upon them.

Results-fixing usually goes hand in hand with gambling - it is done so people can make a lot of money betting on something and then that result is arranged. None of the examples - not even the Williams/McLaren one are in this vein. In that incident the teams were acting in their best interest, McLaren secured a victory, Williams secured a world championship.

Renault's strategy could not have been done without creating danger. Any incident, by definition, involving the SAFETY car means the track is unsafe. Any time that marshals are on the track, be it under yellow flags or safety car conditions, puts their lives at danger. It might look slow on the TV, when the cars are going behind the safety car compared to racing speeds, but they are still driving much faster than you would be on the roads.

But even if we were to say that what Renault did in Singapore was race fixing (which it wasn't) - how in all that is sane was what Ferrari did race fixing? They improved Alonso's chances by promoting him one position on the grid and putting him on the clean side of the track, but they didn't fiddle a result, collude with other teams or deliberately throw a race. Their target for the US Grand Prix was to get the best result for Alonso, and that's what they achieved with no outside assistance from other teams. Now, yes, this was at the detriment of Massa's qualifying position, but Massa would not have beaten Vettel or Hamilton in the race and would have had to have pulled over for Alonso, so Massa achieved the maximum he was ever going to even if he had not been demoted.

And if we are counting incidents where a team sacrifices one driver's fortune for another, then suddenly the list becomes much bigger for race fixing. Winggate 2010 - race fixing. Hamilton getting all the good updates first in 2009 - race fixing. Things like this will happen in just about every race. It's not race fixing, it's teams maximising the best result for their end goal. I'm not a fan of what Ferrari did in Austin because of the way they treated Massa - but there was nothing unsporting about it, there was nothing illegal about it, it certainly was not racefixing (!!!!), and - from a weekend objective point of view - it was the best decision to be made. Yes, it sucked to be Massa, yes, it was not the best move from a PR point of view for Ferrari or the sport, but it was the right decision and that was ultimately vindicated by the team's 3-4 position at the end of the race.


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