Briatore gets banned, Renault given suspended sentence and the fallout begins!

Discussion in 'Motorsport' started by prisonermonkeys, Aug 30, 2009.

  1. SUPER NUMBBER

    SUPER NUMBBER

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    This.

    Alas, nothing.
     
  2. Scaff

    Scaff Staff Emeritus

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    Yes.


    The point is no invetigation was completed, as soon as Renault said the would not dispute the charge it was stopped.

    The FIA was ready to speak to a number of people again (particularly Symonds), but did not do so once Renault changed position.


    Even if that is the case (and its not a fact either way) they are still the employer, all three involved were on the Renault payroll and acting to further Renault' position in both the race and championship.

    Renault are fully responsiable for them in a situation like that.


    Then answer me this, are Renault still suing Piquet?

    Unless they are the two events are most certainly linked.


    They hired both of them, they kept them both employed knowing they had 'issues' in the part.

    Lets be blunt about this, Symonds has been caught cheating twice in the past (launch control system that had been banned hidden and still used & removal of filters in refueling rigs to speed up the flow at an increased safety risk), yet Renault still employed him knowing this.

    No, Renault did not employ them as scapegoats, they employed them knowing full well that the get the job done, and were not adverse to breaking the rules to do so.


    Scaff
     
  3. tibiquera

    tibiquera

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    Yes, and that's why they didn't get a greater punishment. Remember than Piquet got full immunity just because he cooperated. And up to this day I'm still disgusted that Piquet got away with it.



    So Renault suing Piquet and then dropping the charges means they are not cooperating with FIA? That makes no sense to me. They can be cooperative with FIA and still sue whoever they want.

    I think implying that Renault hired them with the intend of cheating is going too far. And even if it was the case, if you go to a court you could never blame the team of hiring them, because both parties were free to work and had no legal problems. I still prefer to think that Renault hired them because when they were in Benetton, the team achieved its better results. And no one can deny they are very good at what they do.
     
  4. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Piquet got immunity because he testified, just as Alonso and de la Rosa did during the Stepney Affair. Without Pique's testimony, the FIA woul have nothing to go on. I don't know exaclty what evidence the FIA had, but there were three main pieces of evidence that were leaked: the testimony, the telemetry and the transcript. The transcript of the conversation tells us nothing; there is nothing in there to indicate anyone at Renault knew anything about the crash being deliberate. And the only thing the telemetry proves is that Piquet lost control of the car. If Renault contesed the charges, it wouldn't be too difficult to make the case that he was simply pushing too hard. After all, pit crews frequently tell their drivers what they need to do in order to stay in touch with to catch the car in front, and I believe there's an example of that in the transcript. It wouldn't be too hard to make a case that Piquet was simply trying to go faster and got over-enthusiastic. But the testimony is the important thing: it adds context to everything else. Without it, there may not be any case at all.

    So how is it disgusting on Piquet's part? What exactly did he get away with? I think you're over-reacting here; he was not simply following orders given to him by Briatore and Symonds, he was pretty much coerced into it because of the threat of not having his contract renewed. And what did he get away with? Nothing. After this episode, do you really think he's going to be racing in Formula One any time soon? He's already proven to be a mediocre driver who was out of his depth, but we'll never know how his career may have gone if he'd joined another team. His attacks on Briatore - which may have compromised his testimony - combined with his under-performance make him a very unattractive prospect to the teams. So even though he's done the right thing in coming forth, he's effectively made himself unemployable. Isn't that punishment enough?
     
  5. tibiquera

    tibiquera

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    Well, I understand that it's FIA rules that you get immunity by confessing what you did. But I still have to remember that if my employer tells me to put my life and the lives of others at risk it's my responsibility to say no.

    In other words, I don't say FIA was unfair there in how they applied the rules, the problem is the rule itself that's too lenient with people who plead guilty. In a court, if you plead guilty you get a reduced sentence, but you don't get full immunity for it.
     
  6. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Reading between the lines a little bit, Piquet got immunity not because he confessed, but because without his testimony, there wasn't much of a case. He if testified without the immunity - ie knowing full well that he could be banned from racing - he would have incentive to commit the equivlent of perjury in order to save himself ... if he had agreed to testify at all. And the FIA needed him more than he needed them without immunity.
     
  7. niky

    niky Moderator

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    Your team. Your responsibility.

    As I've pointed out previously... teams have gotten penalized as a team for incidents that could be blamed solely on one guy.

    Is it my fault, as driver, that the wheel nut guy is such an idiot? No. Do I get affected by the penalty for the wheel coming off? Yes, yes I do.

    Team management means you hire the right people for the job. If you cut corners on HR and put an idiot in who endangers an entire field of F1 drivers, pitcrew and FIA stewards, then you deserve to be penalized.

    Renault has kept Symonds despite knowing that he is not averse to cheating, as Scaff says. Part of the game, personally... but if you take that risk, you must pay the piper.

    Renault's cases in the past three years are sending the wrong message to the other teams. Say "I'm sorry"... bark like a dog, sniffle like a little girl, and all you'll get is a spank on the bottom.

    Aren't the whole point of penalties... oh... I don't know... for the teams to not do it in the first place?

    Such a Catholic attitude doesn't bode well for the future of F1. And it's greatly at odds with McLaren, who have the book thrown at them every single time. In "Spy-Gate", they took similar measures. Ron Dennis stepped down and the team manager was sacked. They still got docked points... as a team... and rightly so!

    -

    It's "Business 101". As boss, it is always your responsibility if your subordinates mess up. No ifs, no buts. You're the one who hired the guy. It may be unfair for all of Ford's stockholders to suffer reduced earnings because one idiot specified the wrong tire for the Ford Explorer and the company now has to pay a huge settlement fee, but that's corporate responsibility.

    -

    Again... two year suspended sentence. That's like saying you're getting ten years for grand theft auto, but it's suspended as long as you don't steal another car.
     
  8. tibiquera

    tibiquera

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    The nut example is bad, because it involves the whole team (the lollypop guy and the engineer who should tell the driver to pull out from the road). Saying Renault should be punished because of Briatore's past makes no sense.

    The only problem I see is that some people have too much nationalism and protectionism with British drivers/teams. That's why there's so many people waving their arms and saying "it's not fair Renault didn't get the same punishment as McLaren". Nobody can touch McLaren or Hamilton and all of a sudden you see waves of people complaining. I feel that a lot of times passion obfuscates reason.

    I see the point, but let's say a person commits murder and then years later turns himself in. Even if the case couldn't go ahead without the persons cooperation, he'll still get some punishment. Obviously it's an extreme case, but the point is you simply can't get full immunity. A much reduced sentence would be fair though.
     
  9. prisonermonkeys

    prisonermonkeys Premium

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    Well, that's one example ... but I don't think it's quite right. Now, if you were talking about a contract killer who was caught and the police wanted to bring down his employer - like, say, a leading underworld figure - then that would be closer to what happened with Renault.
     
  10. niky

    niky Moderator

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    Nope. They hired him, knowing full well that past, and thus accepting responsibility for all his actions. Again, Business 101. You ought to study it sometime. I don't know about the FIA, but in law, your corporation has to accept responsibility for the actions of all employees in performing their work duties. You can't censure F1 for what Mosley does in his bedroom... but you sure as hell can censure a team for what any member of the organization does on track. Especially if it benefits the team as a whole.

    As a manager, (in real life), it's my job to accept responsibility for what my employees do on company time. If I turn a blind eye to it and condone such actions... and only react when it is brought to light before a court of law, what kind of manager would I be?

    I'm not British. And it's not fair that numerous teams were bringing up similar complaints of cheating in that season and the FIA turned a bilnd eye to it. Again... I actually agree with McLaren's punishment for "Lie-Gate"... why should this be any different?

    Piquet was asked to commit suicide. Clearly the boy was out of his mind when he accepted the order.
     
  11. yeti

    yeti

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    All you need to remember here is - crap flows upwards.

    Renault are ultimately responsible for anything and everything that Briatore, Symonds and Piquet did whilst working for them.

    C.
     
  12. Scaff

    Scaff Staff Emeritus

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    No one has said that Renault should be punished for Briatore's past (or Symonds for that matter), what we are saying is that Renault knew full well the nature and character of these two employees from their past.

    As such they had a duty of care to the rest of the team, the parent company (Renault SA), shareholders and fans to ensure that the actions these two employees carried out were acceptable.

    In almost every country employers are responsable for the actions of employees, the Ford Explorer issue being a classic example.


    A couple of slight problem with that, first I like the Renault team a lot, I worked for Renault UK for six years and one of my role while employed I still rank as my favorite ever.

    Secondly I was one of the first to condem McLaren for lying to the stewards during that incident this season.



    Yes, because causing a crash and murder are both on exactly the same scale aren't they!

    Yes you can get immunity if you testify, legal cases the world over have used lower level people involved in crime to get people further up the chain. With the lower level person given immunity, hell the USAM even provide a handbook for it under US law....

    http://www.usdoj.gov/usao/eousa/foia_reading_room/usam/title9/23mcrm.htm


    ...regards

    Scaff
     
  13. Famine

    Famine Administrator

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    Because Coughlan did know - and probably use - the data. Not necessarily to create copycat designs, but to gain tactical advantage. As part of the e-mail exchange mipuumal says I'm ignoring, Alonso comments that Coughlan told them when Kimi was going to pit in Australia and that he was friendly with Nigel Stepney - the source of the leaks.

    The team were held accountable for the actions of one of their employees. However the original punishment was pretty much the same as the one Renault later received for a similar but much more far-reaching offence. The WMSC said that there was no proof that the information affected the 2007 championship.


    This was then appealed by Ferrari, leading to the eventual punishment of a $100m fine, exclusion from the 2007 championship and a conditional exclusion from the 2008 championship.


    They knew about it, but they didn't have access to it. They only knew what Coughlan told them - the only McLaren employee who had access to the data (780 pages of confidential Ferrari data).


    Compare this to Renault's version of the offence. They had, and I quote from the WSMC here, "documents and confidential information belonging to McLaren, but [was] not limited to, the layout and critical dimensions of the McLaren F1 car, together with details of the McLaren fuelling system, gear assembly, oil cooling system, hydraulic control system and a novel suspension component used by the 2006 and 2007 McLaren F1 cars.".

    15 individual employees at Renault F1 had the data. 18 witnesses said they saw the data. The data was stored on Renault F1's central computer database - and, given that it was uploaded in 2006, included the entirety of the following season's McLaren. Renault received exactly the same punishment as McLaren had originally received.


    So, we're left with the situation that:

    1. Entire team know every aspect, including blueprints, of competitor's car for current and next season. No punishment levied.
    2. One employee has 780-page dossier on competitor's current car. Team fined $100m, banned for one year retroactively and conditionally banned for a further year despite no proof of competitive advantage.



    As for Piquet vs. Schumacher... if Schumacher had been told to crash into Villeneuve and Hill, he should not have to bear the punishment alone. If he did it by himself, the team should not have to share his punishment. Seems relatively straightforward, surely?
     
  14. TheCracker

    TheCracker Premium

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    It now looks as if Briatore may be forced to sell his shares in the English football club (QPR) he co-owns, due to Football League rules stating that no one can own a club if they are banned by any sport's governing body.

    Source.
     
  15. Hun200kmh

    Hun200kmh

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    I think that there's no possible comparison between the McLaren/Renault cases (although there is between them) and this crash-gate.

    If there was any, then Flavio Briatore would be entitled to complain.

    Like this: "Hey, Dennis walked away with it, his team payed a fine, and I am BANNED FROM F1 FOR LIFE ?!?!?!?!?!?! "

    You may say "well this is a different case, needing a different decision"

    And you'll be right :D
     
  16. SUPER NUMBBER

    SUPER NUMBBER

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    But how is it different? Why did Renault get no punishment after providing for and benefiting from Piquet's crash?

    Yeh the McLaren/Renault cases are different...Renault actually endangered people's lives, which is worse, but they get off scott free.
     
  17. yeti

    yeti

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    They should've definitely been had their 10 points removed - and then the table reworked and any reward for their final place be adjusted to the other teams...

    And that's at the very least...

    Ah - that would've done this...

    1 Ferrari 172
    2 McLaren-Mercedes 151
    3 BMW Sauber 135
    4 Renault 80
    5 Toyota 56
    6 STR-Ferrari 39
    7 Red Bull-Renault 29
    8 Williams-Toyota 26
    9 Honda 14
    10 Force India-Ferrari 0
    11 Super Aguri-Honda 0

    Would goto...

    1 Ferrari 172
    2 McLaren-Mercedes 151
    3 BMW Sauber 135
    4 Renault 70
    5 Toyota 56
    6 STR-Ferrari 39
    7 Red Bull-Renault 29
    8 Williams-Toyota 26
    9 Honda 14
    10 Force India-Ferrari 0
    11 Super Aguri-Honda 0

    Which meant no change!! = Doh!

    C.
     
  18. Touring Mars

    Touring Mars Moderator

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    I think this was a poor decision by the FIA. The FIA were faced with the worst incidence of cheating the sport has seen, but has shown incredible leniency, and probably for the wrong reason. Atleast Symonds and Piquet have had the decency to express shame for what they have done. As for Briatore, the man is a disgrace.
     
  19. tibiquera

    tibiquera

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    True, but there's a difference between knowing what your subordinates do and turning a blind eye, and not knowing what they do. They are still liable, but in a court they would get a smaller sentence.

    Remember that Renault still got some punishment because they are responsible. But their ignorance about what happened and most importantly, their early cooperation with the FIA, gave them a smaller sentence.

    True, but I worked as a court reporter and seen many productive members of society, as they call, who live exemplary lives but at one point "lose their minds" and do something wrong. Even if they plead guilty and show severe remorse they'll still get some punishment. That punishment will be much lower given the circumstances, but there will still be some.

    I'm not comparing the severity, but the circumstances.

    Even if you're right, that doesn't have a lot of relationship with the Cingapure case. The crime was different, the circumstances were different, and the gain was also different. Let's suppose McLaren really did gain an advantage from it. That would have allowed their drivers to fight for the driver's championship, which would give them a substantial financial gain. Also the level of sophistication in McLaren's case was much greater (believe it or not in a court the level of sophistication of a crime counts). And if my memory serves me well, McLaren wasn't as cooperative with the FIA. In Renault's case, it was a more serious crime, no doubt about it, but the advantages were seen in only one race. The punishment would be for the crime itself, not the advantage they gained over it. And for the crime, the parties involved were severily punished.
     
  20. Famine

    Famine Administrator

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    "If"?

    I never said it did. I was discussing only the espionage scandal as it had been brought up.
     
  21. TheCracker

    TheCracker Premium

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    You never know what's been negotiated behind the scenes between the FiA and Renault. Renault might be on the brink of leaving F1. They'll already have a budget in place for 2010 along with sponsorship commitments, but a heavy fine could be enough to push them to drop out at the end of this season. With Symonds gone, Alonso likely to leave, and other drivers like Grosjean tied in with the now banned Briatore, Renault have little to loose now other than their dignity. By acting quickly and getting rid of and distancing themselves from the culprits, Renault now have the opportunity to bow out pride mostly intact.
     
  22. tibiquera

    tibiquera

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    No offense, I just don't wanna be the judge in this case.
    It wasn't a personal comment. It's just that you were the one who put it in the most logical way.
     
  23. SUPER NUMBBER

    SUPER NUMBBER

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    I'm sorry, I missed the part where Renault actually gets punished...

    And be careful how you answer that, because the one truth we cannot escape is:

     
  24. Hun200kmh

    Hun200kmh

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  25. tibiquera

    tibiquera

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    They got a 2 year suspended sentence. Believe it or not, this is an actual punishment. That's the kind of sentence I'd like Piquet to get too.
     
  26. Famine

    Famine Administrator

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    Yes. They absolutely mustn't attempt to fix another race in the next two years.

    Piquet has an effective life ban. Like anyone's going to touch him now.
     
  27. Tornado

    Tornado

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    Heavens, what will happen if they do? A five year suspension period? Gasp!

    Quite frankly, something should happen to Renault. As I understand it, the FIA doesn't even know who in the team was involved with the fiasco. Briatore and Symonds are obviously the fall guys for this mess and they probably did mastermind the whole thing, but what if Renault knew about it as a team?
     
  28. Soundtrack

    Soundtrack

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    full paperwork and audio recordings from WMSC here

    Wondering who might be Mister X...
     
  29. Hun200kmh

    Hun200kmh

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    My opinion: 99% chances of him being Alonso. 1% some other senior employee of the team (related to race-strategy).

    EDIT: But if Briatore goes to the courst we will find out. According to what I read so far, witness X had a meeting with Flav and Pat so they know who he is. And it's only the evidence provided by "X" that Briatore was considered, beyond any reasonable doubt, to be part of the plan.

    So, in fact "X" axed the Flav :D
     
  30. yeti

    yeti

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    Professor Xavier?!?

    Blimey - didn't realise he was into F1?!

    C.