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Ecclestone fumes over “stupid” team orders

Mar 26, 2013, 9:02 AM EDT

Sebastian Vettel, Mark Webber

Bernie Ecclestone was not happy at seeing the closing laps of the Malaysian Grand Prix shaped by team orders.

Both Red Bull and Mercedes issued instructions to their drivers to hold position while running in the top for places of the race.

Ecclestone criticized both teams in an interview with the Daily Telegraph.

“At this stage of the championship, I do not believe there should be any team orders. It does not matter who it is,” said Ecclestone.

While much attention has focused on Red Bull after Sebastian Vettel defied an instruction not to overtake Mark Webber, Ecclestone targeted his criticism at Mercedes as well. Team principal Ross Brawn repeatedly ordered Nico Rosberg not to pass Lewis Hamilton.

“I was disappointed that Mercedes didn’t let Rosberg go past,” said Ecclestone. “I thought that was a stupid decision. I think Rosberg could have chased the two Red Bulls down a little more. That decision wasn’t sensible.”

Meanwhile Red Bull responded to criticism of their tactics and Vettel’s response to them by issuing a statement:

“Following Sunday’s race in Malaysia, there is obviously a lot of opinion and comment. As advised on Sunday, this situation will be dealt with internally.

“It’s worth noting that this is not an entirely new situation for us. At Infiniti Red Bull Racing, we have two drivers who both want to win races and championships and this has been the case since Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel started driving together in 2009.

“Together, the driver pairing of Mark and Sebastian has achieved 35 wins, 80 podiums, 13 one-two finishes and six FIA Formula One world championships. This successful period includes some spells of intense on-track rivalry between our drivers.

“Each incident has been managed in our own way behind closed doors and this will be no different.”

  1. doublenickel552013 - Mar 26, 2013 at 10:26 AM

    Bernie Ecclestone needs to by a team and run it his way and keep quiet about others . Tyers & fuel played a big part in the race and if Bernie had half a brain he’d know that .

    • bennoj - Mar 26, 2013 at 5:28 PM

      Bernie owned and ran the Brabham team in the mid-late 70s… you may notice it no longer exists.

  2. NotoriousKDV - Mar 26, 2013 at 12:52 PM

    I thought they put in a rule outlawing team orders. If that’s the case then why not penalize both Red Bull and Mercedes. I say take away drivers’ points from all 4 drivers and constructors’ points away from both constructors. That will send a message to everyone and all of this team orders nonsense will end.

  3. patellis15 - Mar 26, 2013 at 1:07 PM

    They removed the ban on team orders before last season…

  4. icemanpjn - Mar 26, 2013 at 1:33 PM

    Besides the fact that the ban on orders was lifted, orders were still there even when illegal. They were just hidden more, although still thinly. Drivers knew what was expected of them, and just in case a driver could get a reminder that “Fernando is faster than you.”

  5. tdk24 - Mar 26, 2013 at 2:09 PM

    And that is why F1 racing is a joke. Don’t get me wrong, the cars and tracks are sweet. But scripted racing is not racing. They should just go to 1 car teams and get rid of the less competitive teams that are just lap traffic anyway.

    • bennoj - Mar 26, 2013 at 5:31 PM

      If you believe that team orders at some level don’t exist in all forms of racing where teams have more than one driver, I have this bridge in Brooklyn I’m looking to sell…

  6. gameover18 - Mar 26, 2013 at 7:52 PM

    F1 is a joke period! The owners shouldn’t be allowed to control the race like that and I’m glad vettel pretty much said fuck you red bull

    • worknman24hours - Mar 27, 2013 at 11:11 PM

      I would’nt be so sure Vettel was’nt already told to pass Webber at any time in any race regardless of the on track team orders.

      Vettel is their number one driver.

      So I would’nt be crediting Vettel with breaking ANY team order as they ALL BENEFIT HIM and his run to every years championship for the team.

      I have massive respect for Webber but he already knows he’s just there to help the team win a championship and Vettel a drivers championship.

      Stinks but that’s the reality and Mark does get to say he is a valuable member and contributor to a multiple Formula One World Champion team.

    • purplesectornet - Apr 1, 2013 at 1:46 PM

      No what is a joke is your F bomb. F1 is the top racing series in the world, so the only thing that is a joke is your hatred for it.

  7. worknman24hours - Mar 27, 2013 at 11:07 PM


    Bernie PLEASE take your meds and be quiet.


    • purplesectornet - Apr 1, 2013 at 1:47 PM

      Bernie Eccelstone does *NOT* own Formula One. Do some reading.

  8. techmeister1 - Mar 31, 2013 at 12:06 AM

    Bernie is a typical arse clown. Another day, another Bernie Blithering Idiot comment.

    The team orders didn’t change the results. Both Red Bull and Mercedes had very real concerns regarding tires and fuel for Mercedes. The teams scored the same number of points no matter which of their drivers were in front of the other. Neither Hamilton nor Rosberg was capable of catching the RBR cars. Vettel proved what an ARSE he is by passing Webber after Webber turned his engine power down as instructed by the team and then maintained a comfortable pace to hold the Mercede’s boys off.

    Vettel has tuned into a real chump. He was a 1/2 second per lap slower than Webber yet he calls in and tells the team to have Webber allow him to pass and for what, to soothe his giant ego that was crushed because he could not keep pace with Webber.

  9. purplesectornet - Apr 1, 2013 at 1:50 PM

    No that would be you. I certainly hope NBCsports starts to clean up this place…looks to me like the F1 haters from speedtv have decided to come here and spew the typical anti-F1 cause it’s more prestigious than American racing nonsense. Keep sipping that hater-aide boys…

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