Ferrari could face further action following 'team-orders'

Ferrari and Fernando Alonso are back as Formula One title contenders despite leaving Germany with a $100,000 fine and the threat of further punishment hanging over them.

The governing International Automobile Federation (FIA) must now decide whether to impose additional sanctions after a Sunday that cast a cloud over what is shaping up to be one of the closest seasons ever.



The Hockenheim stewards decided Ferrari, who finished one-two, had told Brazilian Felipe Massa to let Spanish team mate Alonso win the race, a breach of the regulations barring so-called 'team orders'.



They also ruled the team had brought the sport into disrepute and referred the matter to the FIA's world motor sport council (WMSC).



Ironically, the FIA is now run by the very man - Frenchman Jean Todt - whose actions as Ferrari boss at the notorious 2002 Austrian Grand Prix led to team orders being banned in the first place.



Todt, who has steered clear of controversy so far in his short time as president, can be expected to step aside from any involvement in the process when the council eventually meets but the council will not have an easy decision to make.



Alonso, however, will not be having any sleepless nights about his role in the affair even if some have suggested the top two positions be reversed.



"If I was the WMSC I would take away team points and leave the drivers' points," said Lotus technical head Mike Gascoyne, who worked with the double world champion at Renault.



"They just did what they were told to do after all," he added on his Twitter feed.



"At the end of the day Alonso did not do anything. Massa backed off and let it happen. He is guilty of obeying orders so shouldn't be rewarded."



If Sunday afternoon was not Ferrari's finest moment in Formula One, then Alonso could equally argue that he did very little wrong.



The double world champion, who celebrates his 29th birthday in Hungary on Thursday, was ultimately gifted a win that most people had expected him to take anyway.



Alonso had been faster than Massa in practice and in qualifying and lost out to the Brazilian at the start mainly because Red Bull's pole sitter Sebastian Vettel saw him as the bigger threat.



When Vettel moved across to try and block Alonso, he handed Massa a clear road to the first corner and the lead. It was evident in the race which was the faster Ferrari.



While Massa was denied an emotional win on the first anniversary of the crash that left him fighting for his life in a Budapest hospital, Alonso was also overdue some good fortune after having his last two races wrecked by the deployment of the safety car.



"Apart from the win, the most important thing is to feel confident with the car again, to feel that we are going in the right direction in terms of developing the car," he said, focusing on the positives.



"So despite the win, the better news for us in the last two or three races is that we are competitive."



Leaving aside the controversy, the Formula One title battle will benefit from a resurgent Ferrari putting pressure on Red Bull and McLaren.



From looking like a four-way battle, there are now five drivers divided by just 34 points - very little under the new scoring system that rewards a winner with 25.



Five drivers have won at least two races each and any one of them could win in Hungary next weekend. Alonso's win, even if tainted in the eyes of some, has only made that battle more intense than ever.



Arts and Entertainment
Supporting role: at the Supreme Court, Rhodes was accompanied by a famous friend, the actor Benedict Cumberbatch
booksPianist James Rhodes on the extraordinary legal battle to stop the injunction of his memoirs
Arts and Entertainment
Jesuthasan Antonythasan as Dheepan
filmDheepan, film review
Sport
Steven Gerrard scores for Liverpool
sport
News
Tattoo enthusiast Cammy Stewart poses for a portrait during the Great British Tattoo Show
In picturesThe Great British Tattoo Show
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?