Was Sauber’s radio message to Perez a team order to help Ferrari?

2012 Malaysian Grand Prix

Sergio Perez, Sauber, Sepang, 2012Sergio Perez drove a superb race in the Malaysian Grand Prix to challenge for victory, ultimately finishing second.

But Sauber’s late instruction to their driver, as he caught Fernando Alonso, telling him to ensure they finished second, aroused suspicion.

Perez was told, “Checo, be careful, we need this position, we need this position,” as he reduced Alonso’s lead from seven seconds to less than one in the closing stages of the race.

On the face of it Sauber may have been prudent to tell Perez not to risk throwing away 18 points for second place.

But the nagging question remains: Why did they wait until he’d caught Alonso before telling him to back off?

If Sauber were happy to settle for second, why did they not instruct him earlier to look after the gap to Lewis Hamilton – who he was comfortably ahead of – and not go chasing after the Ferrari?

It’s doubtful whether Perez paid any heed to the message. He made an error at turn 13 while pushing to pass the Ferrari shortly afterwards and admitted, “the win was possible”.

There are obvious links between the two teams. Sauber are Ferrari engine customers and Perez is a member of Ferrari’s driver development programme. He has been tipped to take Felipe Massa’s place at the team.

Ferrari have allegedly used Sauber to interfere in races in the past. Former Sauber driver Norberto Fontana has said he was told by Ferrari team principal Jean Todt to assist Michael Schumacher during the 1997 European Grand Prix, when Schumacher was racing Jacques Villeneuve for the world championship.

Whatever happened today, it shouldn’t detract from a marvellous performance by both drivers. Nor is it realistic to suggest Perez’s late mistake at turn 13 was him ‘throwing’ the race – when the less risky option of simply backing off was available to him.

Was the radio message another example of Ferrari leaning on Sauber to get a better result in a race?

Or was this Sauber racing conservatively and settling for their first podium finish as an independent team since Heinz-Harald Frentzen finished third at Indianapolis in 2003?

Cast your vote below and have your say in the comments.

[poll id="327"]

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173 comments on Was Sauber’s radio message to Perez a team order to help Ferrari?

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  1. ninguen said on 25th March 2012, 12:32

    Tell Maldonado if he would be willing to have heard a similar message last week

    • Saying that team orders was applied is discrediting Alonso for this fantastic win..Dono why a big fuss is only made when is abt ferrari … Redbull has a second team and ve seen in many races where the toro rosso drivers let Vetttel/Webber easily to pass thru and held the other drivers longer.. Even in last race Vergne allowed vettel to pass thru after vettel pitted and came back behind vergne.. but he held rosberg behind him as long as he pitted in the next lap…Isn’t this a team order and why hasn’t been any polling/articles abt redbull team orders.. ? A polling like this itself discredeting Alonso..Its just a radio msg from race engineer of a midfield team struggling for sponsor to bring the car home n not make anything silly…

      • Keith Collantine (@keithcollantine) said on 25th March 2012, 13:59

        Dono why a big fuss is only made when is abt ferrari

        There isn’t – I wrote a similar article when there were questions over Red Bull’s conduct in Brazil last year:

        Was Vettel’s ‘gearbox problem’ team orders in disguise?

      • bbbalazsF1 (@bbbalazsf1) said on 25th March 2012, 20:13

        well spotted, i thought i was the only one thinking that the Torro Rosso drivers are letting Vettel/Webber trough more easily than they do with other drivers
        Perfect example was in australia when Vettel was followed by Alonso just after he exited the pits, and there was a TR driver in front of them…..
        Well i have to say Vettel had a much easier job to pass………

      • pSynrg (@psynrg) said on 26th March 2012, 7:23

        Even if there were team orders between Torro Rosso and Red Bull it would be a completely different scenario. Torro Rosso and Red Bull are financed completely by the same organisation. They are a feeder series for Red Bull. They are Red Bull.

        AFAIK Sauber are legitimately using Ferrari engines only as customers. It is generally accepted good business practice to serve your customers and not penalise them for using your produce.

        Saying that I don’t think this was a veiled team order. At least allow me not to get that much more sceptical about all that happens in F1!

    • MJ (@mjf1) said on 25th March 2012, 17:15

      Exactly, I think the Sauber team remembered what happened to Maldonoado and just wanted to remind him that a second place finish is still great for the team.
      …and why do so many people automatically assume that Perez was going to overtake Alonso just because he was catching up so fast. It’s one thing to catch up, but a whole different thing to overtake. I think the message was given with about 5 or 6 laps left and we all saw how well Alonso defended against a quicker Williams car last week in Melbourne.

      • Gerardo said on 26th March 2012, 1:59

        Well I think it was imminent an overtake from Perez on Alonso. I agree its one thing to catch up and a whole different thing to overtake but Perez was clearly quicker than Alonso and with Sepang’s two long straights and DRS, Perez overtake was imminent, sooner or later, and the race had enough laps left to do it without taking any major risk. I would have given Perez a radio message telling him just to be careful.. instead of something kind of coded as “hold your position”. Now, the less risky option of simply backing off was going to be tooo obvious a team order was given to benefit Ferrari.. so.. with the gap he has over Hamilton.. a bit of an off track excursion was a well disguise. So, who knows? no one is going to admit it obviously.. maybe Peter Sauber was in tears because he knew the victory was his and taken away by politics, on the other hand.. I don’t think Perez would have been that happy if he had to obey those orders. Maybe Perez lost concentration at the radio message and made a mistake.. or maybe his tires were giving up and lost grip.. It was a great race anyway and well deserved place by Alonso and Perez.. although I had to admit I would have love to see and overtake for the lead in the last few laps. I’m mexican and really excited to see Perez fighting for the lead. I you ask me.. I don’t thing there was any order… but an overtake from Sauber and Perez over Ferrari and Alonso was going to make Ferrari look really bad.. so it makes you think conspiracy theories!

    • UKFan (@) said on 25th March 2012, 19:45

      I agree with Moonlight, when I heard the message, I thought instantaneously of team orders (just like Croft) but in the end the message made alot of sense, I believe that there were no interest in between just because what had happened to Maldonado in the week before, We’ve heard the line “we need this position” many times and these time didnt sound that “away”. And I dont think Ferrari is smart enough to fool us like the other teams when about team orders.

    • Ferrari is a shame! And Alonso didn´t know about Nelsinho Piquet accident… And Massa was not ordered to let alonso pass…and Rubens didn´t have to let Schumacher pass….
      I used to like Ferrari. Not anymore.

      • Brian said on 25th March 2012, 21:40

        Can we just cut through the haze of conspiracy for a few moments and apply some basic maths and logic to this?

        Perez’s 2nd place scored him 18 points, which is more than 40% of the total points from last year in one race, and with the midfield looking highly competative this year it’s just common sense to tell him to take it easy when overtaking. If you look at it objectively, it could take Sauber up to 10 races to gain that amount of points with their usual trend of finishes (based on last year of course). So it makes sense to tell him to be careful and make sure he gets at least 18 points than throw it away for an extra 7.

        While I can understand the air of sceptisim from previous incidents, don’t take anything away from the amazing performances of Perez and Alonso today (and before anyone posts silly comments, I’m a massive Macca/Hambo fan).

        • Wallbreaker said on 25th March 2012, 22:57

          Amen

        • hays33d (@hays33d) said on 25th March 2012, 23:38

          Brian, totally agree. The conspiracy theorists need a good dose of Occam’s Razor. Sauber was just looking at the big picture: points = money. 40% of last year in one race is HUGE. The cars are very tightly spaced this year. They needed the points. If it was Vettel in front, they would have said the same thing.

          But man, it would have been sweet to see Perez win.

    • Robbie (@robbie) said on 26th March 2012, 14:51

      I think it was a team order, and one that made perfect sense to me, on the following points…
      a) it would have been disastrous if SP had a go at FA and mucked it up for both of them…that would have been far more negatively consequential than not getting 7 extra points.
      b) I think that even before SP heard that radio comm, let alone by the time we heard it, SP was very possibly already thinking that it was great that he had so much pace and was drawing in on FA, but he surely should not give FA a hard time and risk too much. Buxton’s article states that SP is way too much of a racer for that, but at some point there is common sense too…I don’t think SP went wide as part of the team order, I think he heeded the instruction and decided he wouldn’t/shouldn’t race FA but would show the world that he COULD have.
      c) The fact that he went wide while pushing, to imho at least show the world he had the pace, shows also that he could have taken FA out if he had gone full out after him. ie. SP was not immune to making an error in those closing laps that could have been costly for both of them.
      d) FA was not looking to win a race, by all accounts from what we have heard and seen about this car. Wet weather once again made the race a bit of a crapshoot and FA found himself with a potential win, which might be a rarity this year. Sauber probably recognized that to have SP potentially throw away a rare (for 2012) win for FA would not have been prudent. And I don’t mean relegating FA to second place…they had to look at it as worst case scenario, they get into a tussle and both lose out.
      e) assuming it was a team order it doesn’t take away from FA’s win…FA had already earned his spot by leading for much of the race…ie. FA stamped his authority on the day, albeit with help from the weather, but nonetheless FA had already done enough…SP, or Sauber, or a team order didn’t help FA get to where he was, nor is there a guarantee that SP would have passed FA…he went wide just trying to keep up/catch up.
      f) there’s a possiblity FA had more in the car if he needed it, and could have pulled away from SP if he had to, but may have been himself trying to ensure a good finish and no mistakes or issues of unreliability.

      • Robbie (@robbie) said on 26th March 2012, 14:56

        Just to add to d) SP was also in a spot few would have predicted, thanks to the weather, and Sauber recongnizing that did not want to see it thrown away…ie. nobody will be putting money down on SP placing second in the next race or fighting for the win…few will even assume FA is now fighting for the WDC in a race winning car.

        • Robbie (@robbie) said on 26th March 2012, 15:00

          And g) there is plenty of precedent in F1 for this to be brought up. That is why I am convinced it was a team order, but a sensible one….there have been far more ‘crass’ uses of team orders, to use a word Keith has used in recent weeks when it comes to the use of team orders in F1 in the past.

          • Mike (@mike) said on 27th March 2012, 0:47

            @robbie I don’t believe that Perez, had he been ordered to let Alonso win, would have done so.

            You have a lot of text there, but Perez’s outright joy on the podium shows that your writing is only drama created in your own mind.

          • Robbie (@robbie) said on 27th March 2012, 16:19

            So you are saying Perez would have disobeyed an order. Ok. That’s your opinion. I’d sure expect the guy to be in a heap of doodoo if he ruined or risked his and FA’s races while disobeying an order.

            And the fact that he showed outright joy on the podium shows that my writing is only drama, how exactly?

            I say he already knew not to risk ruining his own and FA’s race, and I say that he showed joy because he got a great result for himself and the team and was lucky he didn’t take himself out of the equation with that off while trying to catch FA.

            I don’t get how to you joy=no team order, when to me joy=a great finish that didn’t result in some great points being squandered, in spite of his off.

    • jamie said on 1st April 2012, 16:31

      Anyone who does not believe that the order by ferrari to tell perez not to pass must also believe usain bolt does not take performance enhancing drugs.
      Just watch the senna movie and listen to what he says. Formula 1 is political. They did the same to him, he caught prost in a rain affected race, only when he was going to pass prost the race was stopped. why not stop the race earlier,same rain same race track.by the way prost was in a ferrari.
      Sauber use ferrari engine. Perez is in the ferrari f1 training program. do the maths. but it is easy and convenient to hide behind oh the conspiricy theory. And ferrari had to win this race Why? Money taiks and so does politics. Did alonso look happy and content with his miraculous win on the podium, i say no he did not. Stop being nieve people and wake up.

  2. karlinhos said on 25th March 2012, 12:33

    BIlis, bilis, more bilis! A mamarla

    • jamie said on 1st April 2012, 16:51

      Did perez run wide on purpose maybe out of frustration, he did not make a mistake the whole race only after he was given the radio message.1 out of frustration knowing he could take alonso, 2 ferrari train him, and he wants to impress his future employer. Bernie ecalstone is the dark force.

  3. damonsmedley (@damonsmedley) said on 25th March 2012, 12:35

    Maybe… I seriously doubt it, but if it was, then I still think he’d have gone for a win. What’s ridiculous is the theory that Perez deliberately ran wide. He was lucky to continue after going off at such a high speed corner, so if he was going to “fake” a mistake, he’d have done it somewhere not so dangerous.

    I think, ultimately, it was just Sauber telling him not to be silly. He could have won, but he blew it. Now we can only hope there’s a next time!

    • King Six (@kingsix) said on 25th March 2012, 12:43

      One could argue that Ferrari are already grooming Perez to be the new number 2 at Ferrari. Who would want to go there? Perez has the talent to be at a better team… but maybe I’m being too harsh. It was still very nice to see Alonso and Ferrari win a race in that….thing.

      • ducatiusa (@ducatiusa) said on 25th March 2012, 16:56

        you are correct , at the end of your comment you describe Ferrari as THAT THING It’s unbelievable how bad of a car the people at maranello have manage to create. I just hope they developed it fast.

    • John said on 25th March 2012, 15:25

      Exactly, I think it was a “don’t do anything stupid” order, yes 1st is ideal but it’s all for naught if you crash trying to get there.

      • I was amazed when I saw an “unknown name” suddenly second on the F1 Live Timing (no free F1 coverage in NZ), and wondered what team this guy was from: Sauber. Surely if you have to look on the internet to find out which team this guy is from indicates how rarely this team gets podiums.
        I was hoping he would stay second, and wondered how he was able to keep going for so long on those tyres.
        This is the best result they have had for years!
        I think Sauber’s instructions were sensible. It would have been very obvious to the management, although maybe less obvious to Perez as he was chasing Alonso, that finishing second was enough to keep them in both the drivers’ championship race and the constructors’ title race.
        Perez is ahead of Vettel in terms of points, and he is the person most people are expecting to win this year’s drivers’ championship.
        By just finishing second those title championships are still realistically attainable.
        All this would have been lost if Perez got stuck in a gravel trap or crashed out trying to pass Alonso, and the chances of winning a title would have become much more difficult and remote than they are now.
        Great result!

    • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 25th March 2012, 15:36

      I have to agree with you @damonsmedley, and Perez also picked up the same speed right after that mistake, trying all he could to get close to Alonso again though he knew it would likely be too late. He was just racing for it, and made a small mistake to miss opportunity to win. It happens to the best of them, after they start to get into positions to even challenge. That remains the big news: Sauber has a good car in these circumstances, and Perez made just about the most of it.

      Well done to him and the team, getting higher in the WCC has just become a lot more likely, which is useful as Williams seems to have more consistent speed but haven’t been able to maximize their result.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 26th March 2012, 7:05

      I do think its perfectly possible that Sauber was both conservative, being happy with 2nd instead of risking all with a pass on Alonso and at the same time considering the fallout from Ferrari if they would succeed.
      But that message would have been given when Perez was still a second or 3 behind Alonso, and no one knew he could have really nailed it by doing the opposite of what he was told to do and race all out to catch Alonso.
      Its no surprise that he slipped up in trying, but he had the car control to bring it home none the less, achieving both that coveted 2nd and showing he might have been able to win, laying down his marker. Great driving from Checo Perez then.

  4. King Six (@kingsix) said on 25th March 2012, 12:35

    Politics in F1 is no new thing. Sauber have been known for their close relationship to Ferrari. Ferrari have been known to do things like this. Perez was far too strong before he got that order for it to not have made a significant impact on the final race result. I think it threw him off, literally, as he went wide.

    It’s a shame, but you would have seen the same thing if it was Toro Rosso hunting down Red Bull for the win and you generally see that Toro Rosso make life easy against Red Bull drivers. So it’s not just Ferrari/Sauber who are guilty.

    Perhaps the Mercedes clique is more even. I can’t see Force India getting out of the way/laying off a McLaren (gearbox/rear end) or Mercedes (engine/KERS), but who knows, F1 is very political, unfortunately.

    • Mike (@mike) said on 26th March 2012, 3:22

      And it’s entirely to the detriment to the sport. As are all orders that prevent drivers from doing their absolute best.

      Having said that, I think Ferrari have grown up in terms of inter team orders, I doubt they will ever do it. Orders inside the team yes. But that’s the extent of it.

      Torro Rosso on the other hand can be repeatedly seen to be making it hard for Red Bull’s rivals. And that is a really bad thing.

  5. Alejandro said on 25th March 2012, 12:35

    Is very funny, if there had really been orders, he would have gone slowlier, but no make a mistake that coluld have easily end up very bad. The most logical is simply go slowlier, no 1 second faster/lap.

    Enjoy the race of a true champ and don’t write that things. Do not be jelaus of the best driver because he shows it.

    • PJ (@pjtierney) said on 25th March 2012, 16:47

      First off, slowlier is the single greatest word I’ve read all weekend.

      Second, the way I see it, Sauber really needed the 18 points, as it would be a massive boost to their constructors standings at the end of the year. After seeing Maldonado push past the limit last week you can understand why they were cautious.

    • BasCB (@bascb) said on 26th March 2012, 7:08

      I think that even if it were orders to slow down, they would have been given a few laps earlier than they were played live on TV (at the time Perez was behind some 3 seconds). So if they were Perez clearly ignored that, got close, slipped up, but still brought it home in 2nd to take those points.

  6. Lin1876 (@lin1876) said on 25th March 2012, 12:35

    No. In a word.

    Remember that Sauber almost never find themselves in this position, and their priority would have been on getting the points. They’ll be as aware as anyone that they probably won’t get another podium this year (unless the car is really amazing), so that would have been their priority. And the fact that he ran wide shows he didn’t exactly back off.

    In short, Perez should have won, and had he not run wide, he probably would have.

  7. curro said on 25th March 2012, 12:39

    Not for me.

    I understood: you’re much quicker, do it clean and safe, and don’t screw your position taking unneccesary risks overtaking.

    • magon4 (@magon4) said on 25th March 2012, 13:36

      that’s it.

    • Ru.Bd said on 25th March 2012, 15:39

      Same here, if their are any team order then perez will not disobey that. but as it is a precautionary orders he make his own choice and goes for it.

    • Pinball said on 25th March 2012, 18:15

      If that is what they meant, why didn’t they say that? The message I heard was pretty much “do not try to pass Alonso to go for 1st place”. If they had of said what you interpreted it to mean there would be no need for an article like this, because it would be obvious that it wasn’t an inter-team order.

      The whole thing smells fishy to me, and I feel like we the fans were robbed of a great finish in order for an under preforming Ferrari to save some pride. Being realistic, the win was pure luck, due to the rain, and McLaren screwing up; there is nothing to indicate that the Ferrari has suddenly found some performance and will win some more races this year, so it wouldn’t be surprising that they would try whatever it takes to hold onto this win.

      • curro said on 25th March 2012, 18:51

        It would be the second victory for Sauber in almost 20 years history ( the other one as BMW). First one victory for Perez in F1, second year driving and 21 years old.

        If they have chosen not to win intentionally, they really deserve not to be in the top of the podium.

  8. Imre (@f1mre) said on 25th March 2012, 12:40

    No way. Sauber needed the podium. And Perez was attacking Alonso before his mistake. He’d have tried to overtake Alo.

  9. Fer no.65 (@fer-no65) said on 25th March 2012, 12:42

    It sounded very suspiciou, to be honest. But I think Perez didn’t give much about it and his mistake was an honest one.

    He lost the race but he fought for it until the end. It’d have been phenomenal to see him overtake the Ferrari, though. Certainly a missed chance for Sauber…

    • David BR2 said on 25th March 2012, 13:34

      No reflection on Perez, but the message was totally suspicious. It’s not as though Ferrari are above these kind of orders, or Alonso never the recipient of these kind of interventions to ensure his wins. Sad.

      • TimG (@timg) said on 25th March 2012, 14:02

        It’s not as though Ferrari are above these kind of orders, or Alonso never the recipient of these kind of interventions to ensure his wins.

        The obvious precedent for Ferrari and is Norberto Fontana in a Ferrari-engined Sauber being ordered to hold up Jacques Villeneuve in the 1997 finale, although that was simply an order to an also ran, not to sacrifice a race win. But which races were gifted to Alonso via inter-team (as opposed to intra-team) orders? I’m not sure I can think of any.

        As soon as the team order came over the radio I thought it was a gift to the conspiracy theorists. I’m happy to be proved wrong, but surely there were far easier ways for Sauber to get Perez to back off – “slow down, Sergio, save fuel” or similar. Either way, it seems Perez was happy to keep pushing hard and Sauber were happy to leave the matter – no Rob Smedley-style hand-wringing today.

        My reading of the message was that it was simply a team reminding their driver not to do anything daft and only to go for a pass if it could be done cleanly. Sauber are an inherently conservative organisation – typically Swiss German – and, given that Maldonado, a driver of similar experience, needlessly threw away a valuable points finish just last weekend, they were entirely justified in reminding Perez to keep it on the island.

        • David BR2 said on 25th March 2012, 14:33

          But which races were gifted to Alonso via inter-team (as opposed to intra-team) orders? I’m not sure I can think of any.

          There’s always room for a first obviously. The connections between the teams (and the driver concerned) are sufficiently strong to make it a possibility at least. I think Keith was right to raise the suspicion, it’s also appearing elsewhere, but it also seems that at most the inter-team ‘order’, if it was one, merely put Perez off his driving enough to secure Alonso the win. Maybe Sauber were just being ultra-cautious and the message meant no more than be careful (if you do try to pass).

    • Solo (@solo) said on 25th March 2012, 14:56

      The sad thing is that even if we accept that there was nothing there, Ferrari and Alonso kind of bring this doubts on themselves with the behavior they showed threw the years.
      I think that’s something the Ferrari team should look and consider but i doubt it.

      • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 25th March 2012, 15:42

        Fully agree there @solo, it’s no wonder people look up at something like this (and that’s probably also why the message was played by the FOM tv crew), Ferrari would have done this, no problem, in Todt’s years at least.

        They might even have urged Sauber today to be “cautious, you don’t want to loose those points, don’t do something stupid”, but that’s okay. it is a matter of common sense, and as old as F1 I’d think. Sauber can use those points.

        Even so, pity for that mistake, a 2nd x Sauber team win would have been great!

      • Horacio said on 25th March 2012, 19:10

        “The sad thing is that even if we accept that there was nothing there, Ferrari and Alonso kind of bring this doubts on themselves with the behavior they showed threw the years.
        I think that’s something the Ferrari team should look and consider but i doubt it.”
        I copied/pasted your post because I wouldn’t be able to say it better. I agree 101%.

  10. squaregoldfish (@squaregoldfish) said on 25th March 2012, 12:42

    Not a chance. Just warning him not to do anything silly.

  11. sumedh said on 25th March 2012, 12:42

    NO.

    Remember, radio transmissions that are broadcasted are delayed. So, what we saw on screen was Pereze gets a message 2 corners later, runs wide. But what has happened is Perez gets the message has more than two corners, perhaps half to one lap to think about it and still end up going wide. So, as Keith says it cannot be that he ran wide on purpose.

    And Sauber didn’t wait until Perez had caught Alonso. When we saw the message being broadcasted, at that time the gap was abou t0.4-0.5 seconds. That means when the message was actually sent, the gap was perhaps about 2+ seconds. This means that the Sauber team informed Perez well in advance. Hence, it can’t be a team order.

    Only the Ferrari and Alonso haters (which there are lots of) will believe that this was.

    • minnis (@minnis) said on 25th March 2012, 22:37

      I agree that hearing that message and seeing Perez fly off the track straight away is dodgy, which is why if it was on purpose, he would have waited to avoid suspicion!! (I must add I believe that Perez actually just made an honest mistake – he wouldnt have risked it at such a fast part of the track – surely he would have waited for a slow corner and just ran wide).

      In response to your second paragraph, are you suggesting that Sauber would not give Perez team orders in advance? It was clear that Perez was massively faster than Alonso – had they waited much longer they may have been too late. It makes sense to inform Perez not to attack Alonso at about 1-2 seconds behind.

      So, actually, you have given two arguments in favour of Ferrari team orders!!

  12. Julian (@julian) said on 25th March 2012, 12:42

    While it did seem a little suspicious I’d have to say no. As a few others have said, Sauber know they probably wont be in a position to fight for a podium let alone the win again this season unless there is another freak race like today’s. The last thing they would have wanted was Perez making an ambitious move and losing it all much like Maldonado did last week.
    I think they were just playing it safe and ensuring they secured a well earned podium, and rightfully so.

  13. Abuelo Paul (@abuello-paul) said on 25th March 2012, 12:43

    It would be interesting to have seen the result if McL had not fluffed 2 pitstops for Hamilton, or Jenson had actually seen an HRT race car in front of him, Perez would have been fighting it out with them. Would his team have offered the same advice. Probably. Based on the Grosjean incident last week, no points for fallen heroes. Alonso had this race due McL losing it, nothing more. Great race tho.

    • Mike (@mike) said on 25th March 2012, 23:21

      I don’t think that’s the case, Neither of the Mclarens showed that they had the pace to compete with Sergio.

  14. Eric Morman (@lethalnz) said on 25th March 2012, 12:43

    Quote “It’s doubtful whether Perez paid any heed to the message”
    even if it was, as you say noway was Perez not going to go for a win,
    whether they changed something on his car to make him slip up we will never know,
    but Perez wanted that win regardless, he is a racer and no one is about to take that away from him.
    well done Perez great bit of driving, i also have to take my hat off to Alonso, a dog of a car and he brings it home in first.
    i love McLaren

    • bosyber (@bosyber) said on 25th March 2012, 15:45

      @lethalnz, teams can’t change anything on the car from the pits remotely, only when the car is physically standing in the pits, it’s forbidden by the FIA – both for team order like things, and because it would mean a two-way stream of info between car and pits/strategy/tyre/tech. people, allowing for advanced traction and race control, taking the driver out of the picture.

  15. Magnificent Geoffrey (@magnificent-geoffrey) said on 25th March 2012, 12:43

    All I’m going to say is – I really, really, really hope not.

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