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Tuesday, December 07, 2004

Ferrari's Proposal - Fair Or Farce?

Ferrari proposes its own testing reduction plan is the headline on today. Let's examine in it further.

Jean Todt in the interview with proposes to limit testing to just 15,000 kilometers per team per season. Testing for car development must be conducted on a single track. This is based on the assumption that with a team with two cars running an average of 400 kilometers a day running for the total 24 days (as proposed by the other teams) would yield a total of 19,600 kilometers of testing. So Ferrari's proposal of 15,000 kilometers seems a good move towards reducing testing even further.

Here comes the next part. Really, I don't know whether to laugh or cry with this one. I certainly had a broad smile on my face reading it. In addition to testing for car development purposes, Ferrari proposes additional running for tyre testing. OK this sounds fair enough. But what they propose is that tyre testing be limited to an addtional 15,000 kilometers. This is applied per tyre supplier. Tyre companies would be free to choose how much of this mileage to divide amongst their teams.

OK, so let's take a look at that situation. On the face of it, it looks fair. This way each tyre company has the same volume of data to work with. But hey, Bridgestone needs to divide their mileage amongst a smaller number of teams. And if you think about it, teams like Minardi and Jordan skips testing altogether at times because they can't afford it. And so, guess who Bridgestone will allocate their 15,000 kilometers to the most? Yes, you guessed it, that would be Ferrari. Good one Jean Todt. Michelle screwing with your head or something?

By contrast Michelin will need to divide their testing to a larger number of teams. Top teams at that like Williams, McLaren and Renault. Not to mention, big ass factory teams like Toyota who I'm sure will be demanding more mileage from them. Each of these teams take different philosophies with regards aerodynamics and mechanical design and Michelin needs more mileage to cater for each of their needs.

This proposal of Ferrari is very damaging for Michelin. There will be lots of unhappy chappies in the pitlane who will feel they deserve more Michelin mileage. It will be harder to cater to all their needs. Bridgestone after all need only cater to Ferrari's need. What do they care about Jordan and Minardi after all? Do these teams ever appear in their promotional material? No its Ferrari's need that comes first. Michelin does not have that luxury. They have a far greater number of clients.

I can't believe Ferrari is really serious with this set of proposals. Prima facie, I admit it seems fair to both tyre companies. But if you look closer, Michelin's burden is far greater. And having their mileage restricted in this manner makes no sense and penalises them further. Of course the teams are up in arms about this. Read this story in here.

And come on, does tyre testing really mean tyre testing alone? I would imagine loads of other mechanical, aerodynamic, engine and electronic components get tested along with it. These proposals simply give Ferrari an advantage of more test mileage for development purposes than any other team.

Ferrari are being unreasonable and as has happened for a long long long time now (since the 50s) they are using their influence to bend the rules to their wishes. And that ladies and gents is why all the other teams band together against these bastards. That is why I think their successes are flawed by foul play and political manuverings. Yes, the other teams also want things their way. But only Ferrari gets what they want all the time.

These politicians at Ferrari didn't even have the decency to sit down with the other teams face to face but rather faxed their confounded proposal. Typical goddamned CRONIES.

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