Ferrari’s Horse Whisperer stirred by Mercedes verdict…

Ferrari has made no formal response to the International Tribunal verdict but the colourful mouthpiece of its official website – the mysterious equine commentator known as the Horse Whisperer – has made the feelings of the team clear in a column.

He wrote: “Today we learned, that even if one is guilty and in this case that is an indisputable and verified fact, there is always a way of muddling through as best one can. One only has to suggest to the judge what the penalty should be and even better, why not make it something light like a rap across the knuckles.

“It is somewhat perplexing to say the least to see that the guilty party can get away virtually scot free for having derived “an unfair sporting advantage.” Don’t tell me that testing for three days on your own at the Catalunya circuit is the same as doing so with nine other teams at Silverstone with a host of young hopefuls at the wheel, in an area where the weather can still be changeable even in the height of summer. And what if this whole incident had taken place after the young driver test, what would have been the penalty then? Would they have been forbidden from holding an end of year dinner?”

He adds: “The way things are going in Formula 1 at the moment is becoming boring: you make a mistake, you race with an illegal component, but then you are told to just change it for the next race and we’ve seen what we’ve seen…

“All this reminds the Whisperer that if he ever finds himself running a Formula 1 team in the near future and that he gets off to a difficult start to the season, then all it needs is to organise a nice week of testing at the right moment and then maybe have to skip a later session, by which time, everything could be done and dusted. What do you reckon?”

Finally he could not avoid a dig at the references made by Mercedes to the Ferrari testing: “Oh, and to those who jabber on about transparency and credibility, the Whisperer would remind them that the rules are very clear: you cannot test with a car from the current year. With those that are at least two years old, you can run when you like, where you like, with any driver you like, dressed how you like, inviting who you like.”


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16 responses to “Ferrari’s Horse Whisperer stirred by Mercedes verdict…

  1. stephengreen

    You can only run a two yr old car if it’s substantially different from the current car. Given that there’s only 0.5 secs a lap between them I’d submit it isn’t.

    • You can go back even more than that and see that times were not that far off either. So just because its only 0.5seconds off doesn’t mean anything.

      • stephengreen

        It means any car that is only 0.5 secs slower could be considered as being not substantially different and therefore fall foul of the current rules

    • DaleH

      Then explain why exactly Mercedes needed to run a current car & risk breaking the regulations, when they could have offered a 2yr old car that was only 0.5sec a lap slower, & substantially indifferent from their 2013 car?
      Also, explain why they felt the urgent need to come to the ‘aid’ of Pirelli, who where clearly looking for a current car to test with because they were unable to use older cars. Sounds to me like it Mercedes dont believe the lies of their own legal team … but some sheeple will believe everything they read.

      • JCTK

        The matter of fact was FIA did gave a permission for Merc and Pirelli to “undertake” the test with a 2013 car. Charlie Whiting did went up to FIA’s own legal department to check and they gave the ok. Smart by Merc yes, they have got other intention when conducting these testing yes, but they can’t possibly be punished by the FIA for something which FIA gave permission for in the first place could they?

        These reprimands and the ban from the young driver test is the best the FIA could do to reverse themselves out of this testgate. There will still be plenty of unhappy teams through. Let just say all the other teams got BWNED, again.

        Oh and perhaps next time FIA draft and approve their own regulations they go check with their own legal department too, that would help…
        And Ferrari should stop being a sore loser.

      • Stephen green

        Mercedes say they didn’t have a older car available. Seeing as the test took place at all circuit they were already at, the expense of shipping out extra cars wouldn’t make financial sense

    • Kevin Robinson

      So by your logic, the 1994 Penske driven by Al Unser, Jr, in the Indy 500 isn’t substantially different from the car driven by Ed Carpenter to pole at this year’s 500? After all, they were only 0.5mph apart in their speeds for qualifying.

  2. Simon Benedict

    Ferrari are utter hypocrites, as usual. They have a long, long history of trying to get an unfair advantage. Hell, they even had a special relationship with the Max Mosley and the FIA for years to allow this to happen!

  3. Clemo

    They aren’t saying anything different to many f1 fans or journalists….

  4. Mr Luca Corleone appears to have lost the plot.

  5. GeorgeK

    These comments strike me as the typical self serving sanctimonious tripe we used to read from Ferrari during the Todt/Brawn/Schumy era.

    Apparently Luca still is ghost writing this column! Maybe he doesn’t realize as opposed to representing the Horse Whisper he has become a horse’s ass.

  6. peterg

    If you did not know that the text was provided by Ferrari, you could assume it was about Ferrari.

    I seem to remember, in 97, a Ferrari driver attempting to gain an advantage by ramming a Williams diver to win a WC. The penalty?

    A meaningless loss of driver points for the offender.

    Ferrari’s arrogance, post-Todt, is breathtaking. Even more so when you consider the previously unknown Massa test.

  7. Wild. wild horses…

    A bad set of circumstances for Mercedes and Pirelli, but they should’ve looked into legality of the test before doing it and the FIA had to control the teams a bit better. They do sign that Concorde thing, at least supposedly do sign something.

    Simplify to amplify, pushing the envelope…

  8. Brian

    Hmmm. First there was the Ferrari statement “We only joined Red Bull in the protest because we want clarity.”

    Then there was the (clearly baloney) bit about “we believe that the FIA Tribunal will do the right thing.”

    Gee, Horse Luca, you folks sure do spew the BS around, don’t you? Wow.

  9. petes

    Just to answer your sidebar question Adam; nothing.

  10. **Paul**

    It’s pretty tough to disagree with anything the Horse Whisperer has written, was the decision fair? Questionable. Was the punishment fair? Not really, was it right the defending QC decided the punishment? Absolutely not.

    For Ferrari to feel aggrevied though is a bit ironic given the number of times they’ve had similar scenarios play out to their advantage.

    The net losers of all this are Lotus and Red Bull (and McLaren to some extent). Ironically all the teams who’ve not had ‘secret’ tyre tests. Make of that what you will.

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