They told me – and I trust the source – an unedifying episode that took place immediately after the Silverstone race in the winners’ garage. A part of the Ferrari staff would have refused, at least initially, to attend the podium ceremony and the usual photos. If it is true, as I fear, it is not a good sign. A bit of healthy rivalry in the garage is fine, every mechanic and every technician must cheer for “his of him” driver, but the common interest must be to aim to win. The race and then, of course, also the world championship, indeed the world championship. Spielberg was once called Zeltweg (actually the name change is an administrative matter) and certainly not A1-Ring or Red Bull Ring. I remember the times of the initial bend, beautiful but dangerous, and I even remember the exploit of Brambilla in ’75. Today’s track has lost some of that charm, but it is always exciting: and above all it lends itself well to those close duels that are now daily bread in the Grand Prix, even if the international direction prefers to broadcast the replays live.
I also remember, even if twenty years have passed, the roar of the press room when the first three finishers of the 2002 edition entered the post-GP. The loudest cry was “Marmelada”And the unequivocally Brazilian pronunciation. Jam, in South American Portuguese, is more or less the equivalent of our “cookie“. And the media brasileiros they were indignant, even angry, come on team games clearly perpetrated against Barrichelloforced in the final to give way to Schumacher “forces sciampionscip”, As Jean Todt drastically suggested from the wall. I remember that the day before Rubens, after taking pole, had entered the same room and, by mistake, was about to take the seat reserved for the runner-up. “No – I told him – that’s for tomorrow“. And I swear I didn’t know anything.
It is really true that journalists, indeed we journalists, are never happy. Today that team games are a certified reality, we complain about what happened to Silverstone, or the (timely) failure to apply the aforementioned. But it must also be said that twenty years ago the Austrian GP was held in May and was the sixth round of a 17-race world championship. As if to say that after just over a third of the season, after the jam-flavored victory, Schumacher had exactly double the points of Montoya, second in the standings: 54 against 27. And then the points were not awarded with the shovel, as today, even if the difference between first and second was proportionally greater: four points – 10 to 6 – against 7 today. But numbers aside, the technical superiority of the Red of that year was even embarrassing (for the others): so much so that the Drivers’ title arrived already in July, at Magny-Cours.
In short, of those 4 points, then, perhaps there was no need; especially since team games were officially banned and the head of the Ferrari wall – the one at the time – clearly challenged the FIA, as well as the international media. Coming to publicly scold one of the most titled names in Italian journalism – which obviously wasn’t me – at the next race. But there was worse: in the weekly I worked for, someone who knew a lot – and once again it wasn’t me – wrote that Ferrari would be penalized by 10 points is that “all in all that’s okay“. Unfortunately, however, it was not true, the team was only fined and I regret not having a recording of the phone call that Luca di Montezemolo made to the director at the time. Then there is another episode, much less sensational but still from Austria: four years earlier, in 1998, Eddie Irvine he had ceded third position to Schumacher, again with a view to sciampionscip. By virtue of a hypothetical as well as imaginative brake failure and with a lot of display, for the avoidance of doubt, of the “P4” sign from the pit wall.
Anyway, it was another wall. But today, as I said two days ago, there are those who regret it. Todt’s arrogance was as irritating as the banality of so many of his statements; but his directives very clear from him and never questioned. And the results, well, spoke for themselves. Today, however, the ‘young team’ often seems to struggle in search of a leadership that does not arrive or does not make itself felt, starting with the presidency. Even more than the highly-commented episode of Leclerc’s failure to return to the pits, even the experts are perplexed by those ten laps in which Charles, faster, asked for a way and the wall was silent (and one could not imagine that then it would arrive the safety car to regroup everyone).
If I could give a suggestion, I would say to put behind us a race which, as a return of image, seems to have transformed a victory into a defeat. Just look at the comments on the Scuderia’s FB profile. For this writer, social media is a thorn in that place; but they exist and neglecting them today is not always a good policy. So, I was saying, if I could make a suggestion, I would first think of to heal that anything but serene climate that seems to have established itself within the GeS.
But then, as Charles Leclerc would say, who am I to make suggestions? The important thing is to safeguard the final result, otherwise it could be hard to explain to the world what happened. Especially for a communication that resides in Maranello but, at its highest levels, does not speak Italian.
#Styria #repeats #FormulaPassion.it