Ferrari actions upset fans says Ecclestone

Bernie Ecclestone thinks Ferrari's actions in this year's championship upset the fans and that the Scuderia were 'taking the mickey' out of Formula One. The attitude of the team seemed to be that it could do whatever it wanted but new rule changes...

Bernie Ecclestone thinks Ferrari's actions in this year's championship upset the fans and that the Scuderia were 'taking the mickey' out of Formula One. The attitude of the team seemed to be that it could do whatever it wanted but new rule changes -- including banning team orders that influence the outcome of a race - have been introduced to combat the loss of interest in F1, which many blame Ferrari for.

"The English, the Germans and Italians were ranting," Ecclestone said in the British press of fan reaction to Ferrari team orders. "They were super upset. People don't like being made fools of. What Ferrari were saying, really, was, 'We can do what we like'. People started to think F1 was boring because the same team was winning. Not only that, they (Ferrari) were taking the mickey."

On several occasions Michael Schumacher and Rubens Barrichello were under orders not to race each other. Fans were again dismayed at Indianapolis when Schumacher, who was leading, slowed to let Barrichello close up for a formation finish, only to have the Brazilian take the victory. Whether it was a mistake or error, fans booed and jeered when Barrichello was declared the winner.

How team orders will be policed in future is not clear but FIA president Max Mosley said recently that at least such blatant manipulation such as the result of the Austrian Grand Prix would be avoided.

"Plainly we can only stop them if we can catch them, but at least no-one will now do an Austria," he told the BBC last month. "If we see something suspicious, we will invite the stewards to draw an inference. The team will then have to defend itself. "

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About this article
Series Formula 1
Drivers Michael Schumacher , Rubens Barrichello , Bernie Ecclestone
Teams Ferrari