Alonso's title hopes hang on Paris hearing
Fernando Alonso's Formula One title hopes could suffer a knockout blow when the sport's governing body decides Ferrari's fate at a Paris hearing on Wednesday.Updated: Sep 08, 2010 02:08 IST
Fernando Alonso's Formula One title hopes could suffer a knockout blow when the sport's governing body decides Ferrari's fate at a Paris hearing on Wednesday.
The Italian team, preparing for their home race at Monza this weekend, have already been fined $100,000 for manipulating the German Grand Prix in July through the use of banned 'team orders'.
The International Automobile Federation (FIA)'s world motor sport council must now decide whether that penalty, imposed by race stewards, was sufficient punishment.
Their options are unlimited, with a points deduction or suspended ban considered likely if further sanctions are agreed.
Neither double champion Alonso nor Brazilian team mate Felipe Massa will be present at the hearing, although a Ferrari spokesman said both drivers would be contactable should council members wish to hear from them.
"I shouldn't think the drivers will get a penalty" McLaren's world champion Jenson Button, who is fourth overall and six points ahead of Alonso, said after the last race in Belgium.
"It will be the team, if they do get another penalty, because it was an order from the team. Personally I don't understand why they don't just change the points around of those two (drivers), the points they got in that race, but they obviously can't do that within the regulations," added the Briton.
Former FIA president Max Mosley, who remains an influential figure in the governing body and was in charge when the ban on team orders was introduced in 2002, believes both team and drivers should be heavily punished.
"If one wants to fulfil the needs of the audience, then one must maintain the ban," he told a German newspaper last month. "Both cars and both drivers should lose the points they achieved in the German Grand Prix,"he added.
Kobayashi to stay with Sauber in 2011 Japan's Kamui Kobayashi will stay with Sauber next season but his team mate remains undecided, the Swiss-based Formula One team said on Tuesday.
The rookie, after the Italian Grand Prix at Monza, has scored most of Sauber's points this season with a best result of sixth place at the British Grand Prix. Sauber said an announcement about the team's second driver, currently Spanish veteran Pedro de la Rosa, would be made later in the year.