Lotus F1

Boullier: Drivers working for the team, not for the drivers

Lotus F1 team Principal Eric Boullier has censured the treatment of Red Bull F1 team’s with their drivers controversy over team orders at the Malaysian GP.

Mark Webber led the Malaysian GP race following the final pit stops and team ordered hold position to the end of the race but Sebastian Vettel passed Webber on the lap 46 following an intense battle.

Red Bull Racing team Principal Christian Horner said that there is no remaining desire for payback at Red Bull in the wake of the recent team orders controversy in Malaysia.

But Eric Boullier thinks that he can understand team orders, because drivers are working for the team, not for the drivers; they are working for you.

“Yes, it happens because of the adrenaline and excitement of winning a race, but I think in Formula One it should not happen,” he said.

“Firstly, we should not have team orders so early in the season; not while the championship is at such an early stage. When it happens you need to fix it and fix it quickly.

“Yes, one of our drivers [Kimi Raikkonen] is famous for doing pretty much what he wants, but when you have 600 people behind you, there is a certain respect you must have for the team.”

“Team orders are part of the sport. You have two main strategies to run a team. You might favour one driver, clearly stating ‘driver number one’ and ‘driver number two’ if your target is chasing the Drivers’ Championship title.”

“Alternatively you have both drivers equal, as this is the way you want to go racing, meaning the team holds a lot of importance. The team gives both drivers the same cars, the same conditions, the same performance, but there is a commitment from the team to the drivers.”

“In that case I can understand team orders, because you are working for the team, not for the drivers; they are working for you. Sometimes it seems that emotion takes over, but don’t forget that the drivers are paid to work for you, as they are for the company. I don’t see any people in the world who could disobey their company and not be sanctioned, or at least give clarification as to why they’ve disobeyed.”


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