OP-Ed – Ferrari the Crusader

There are times when Ferrari releases some crazy PR statements, and then there are times where the completely fall off the wagon with what can only be called ridiculous. Yesterday the team released one of those ridiculous statements.

The troubles faced by the new teams on the grid have been well documented by openpaddock and many motorsport publications. Campos Meta’s near collapse teamed with the bloody and ugly falling of USF1 have driven traffic on internet sites through the roof as people search for any bit of news they can as to the new teams fate. Enter Ferrari and their voice of reason published on the Ferrari website.

Ferrari column linked here

I will preface this by saying I have been a die hard Ferrari fan for a long time and have just switched to Mercedes GP upon Michael’s return. I have supported the team through a number of crazy PR statements but none compare to this one. I am also not looking to go open season on Ferrari, but this statement is by far the most ridiculously worded statement from a race team I have ever read. Ferrari bring up a number of good points in this article in terms of the status of the teams. The wording they used could have been different, but for the most part they are telling the fans straight up what is going on. My complaint comes in when Ferrari start tossing around that this is some kind of ”holy war”. Are you kidding me? Did Ferrari just link a poor economy and the changes by former FiA president Max Mosley to that of a “holy war”? They don’t sound like a Formula 1 race team, they sound like a group of jihadists in a struggle against oppression. Along with throwing their usual rhetoric out in a ridiculous form, they take some serious personal stabs at the career aspirations of Jose Maria Lopez. I was no fan of USF1 signing the Argentine driver, but the stab that Ferrari put out was a bit over the top. I can understand that Ferrari is upset at the loss of the big time manufacturers like BMW and Renault (just the name remains there according to Ferrari), but the words and tone used by the Scuderia makes them no better than the new teams coming struggling into the sport. Perhaps they should worry more about Mercedes GP, McLaren and Red Bull then what is going on off the scenes with these newer teams. Ferrari does not even head FOTA anymore so why is it any of their concern what happens. Whether the statements they made about the teams are true or not, the way the team expressed their views this time in my opinion were over the top. That is saying something for a 10 year fan who has heard a lot from the team, this takes the cake.

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5 Thoughts to “OP-Ed – Ferrari the Crusader

  1. Ferrari has banked a large part of their existence on Formula 1. It is in their best interest that F1 remain the pinnacle of motorsport, or else their brand will be harmed. With the exodus of the manufacturers and the addition of these new “GP3 Teams”, Ferrari can’t help but see the value of their involvement in F1 diminished.

    I cannot blame Ferrari for continuing to speak harshly about the new teams in F1. While the use of the term “holy war” was a bad choice of words, Max’s blind quest of adding new teams to the grid, regarldess of their financial stability or in spite of their capability to field a team seems to indicate that they were cutting off their nose to spite their face.

    Lola, Prodrive & Epsilon Eskudia have existing operations already in place. On the technology side, they were all more than capable of fielding an F1 effort, and they were much better positioned to bring in sponsorships based on their past successes. Why Campos and USF1 were given berths while those other teams were left on the sidelines is beyond understanding. Especially now as their entries into F1 are tenuous at best.

    This is Max’s legacy year. I fear that Ferrari will be found correct to question the viability and performance of the teams at the Cosworth end of the grid.

  2. They brought up a number of good points in the article…but this is not the first time that Ferrari has been in the sport with little to no manufacturer efforts. We have been here before and while Lola and Prodrive would have been much better options for the two slots given to USF1 and Campos, it is what it is. I don’t think that F1 will be diminished this season. You have Mercedes entering as a manufacturer in replace of BMW. The talent is also the best we have seen in a long while. F1 will be stronger because of this and I am more interested in this season than I have been in a long time…more so than any year in which we had all the “manufacturers”

  3. Scarlet Pimpernel

    What Luca Di Montezemullo and Ferrari meant when they said Holy War was infact the “Personal Vendetta” that Mosley and now Jean Todt are carrying out against the car manufacturers. I actuallywant Ferrari to keep spewing this verbal diherea in all their press releases so that the whole world gets to know WHO they really are…. a self-absorbed unfair and unsportsmanlike organization that feels it is their God given right to win F1 races and NOT to have any competition (let alone new teams) !

  4. Alan Turner

    Frankly I’m as disturbed by your use of the phrase “a group of jihadists in a struggle against oppression” as I am about the childish diatribe put out by Ferrari. Struggle against oppression? No group in human history does a better job of oppressing people than those who claim to be jihadis. What next? Che was really a misunderstood teddy bear and not a blood thirsty maniac? Pol Pot was on to something? The Holocaust is a Jewish lie? Really? That’s were your mind went with that?

    I understand your need to react to Ferrari’s behavior but I think maybe you should stick to racing news here at open paddock, which you do quite well, and leave your political ideology at the Huffington Post.

  5. Alan,

    I welcome your feedback and would like to first explain that we will stay with the motorsport reporting. We will let CNN and Fox report the stuff they make up. Your description of the Jihadis is correct. They are very good at oppressing folks they claiming to help. However, the movement itself is a “struggle” against those who are “oppressing” them. They choose to leave out the part about their own tactics. That was why I said what I said in the OP-ed article. Ferrari are claiming this struggle against the FiA and Max by calling it a “holy war” against manufacturers when in fact it is Ferrari who helped drive them out. With Ferrari and McLaren winning all of the events, the FiA was forced to take action to “level the playing field”. Costs were going out of control by all parties involved and now that Ferrari can’t take every race, they want to throw their hands up in protest. Anything to further oppress the sport into another 6 year Ferrari win fest. The manufacturers are out because of the economy and lack of results. Those together are not the FiA’s doing. I hope I have cleared the air a bit and promise that we are sticking to motorsport.

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