McLaren can’t stop cheating
Fresh from the diversionary tactic of trying to get Renault tarred with the same brush that McLaren used to paint itself as dishonest, it turns out that McLaren can’t stop cheating.
The FIA has determined that their 2008 car uses technical information McLaren stole from Ferrari.
But, once again, the FIA is being soft. They’ve not banned McLaren, despite the warning issued when they stuck McLaren with a $100 million fine last year.
It wasn’t just a detail or so, either.
It was pervasive.
After this, McLaren should simply be banned from Formula One racing.
So, too, should Mercedes-Benz. The notion that Mercedes is an innocent is ludicrous. They’re the largest shareholder in McLaren and nothing happens on that team that doesn’t pass their approval.
The penalty, at this point, should be the ultimate: the Formula One death sentence. They were caught and they lied. Then they were caught and fined, and warned. And now they’ve done it again.
Here’s what the FIA determined:
The report states: "[Specific systems not disclosed to protect the source of the information, i.e., Ferrari] appear to have been re-investigated and developed by McLaren as a result of the receipt of confidential Ferrari information. Despite senior McLaren management imposing a hiatus on development at the time the (Mike) Coughlan activities were revealed, McLaren now intend to use [these systems] on the 2008 car.
"The [system] mechanism which McLaren has developed since the 3 May 2007 Coughlan meeting is intended to be used on the 2008 car and appears to have been initiated by the receipt of confidential Ferrari information."
At least one of the systems is the brakes:
"It appears on the basis of these documents that the genesis of the idea to incorporate a [unspecified braking system] on the McLaren 2008 car emanated from the emails exchanged on 12 April 2007 concerning Ferrari’s [redacted] system and the meeting called on 3 May 2007 by Coughlan. We have not been presented with a convincing explanation to displace the impression given by the documents."
McLaren is even cheating on tires. The FIA determined that it is “more likely than not” that using C02 in their tires was an idea stolen from Ferrari.
Overall, the report is damning: "We believe the general investigation by McLaren of the use of [unspecified confidential information] established further dissemination of confidential Ferrari information to engineers within McLaren which has influenced their work on the 2007 and 2008 cars."
And it gets worse. McLaren filed an affidavit signed by a multitude of their engineers when the company was defending itself before the FIA. But the FIA’s report says that that engineers within the team were aware of a Ferrari ’mole’ passing information to them.
"Is the Ferrari wheelbase an accurate figure? Did it come from photos or our mole?" The response was: "You will find it’s to the nearest ’mm’." That email exchange was between McLaren engineers.
According to the FIA, "On a natural reading of this exchange and taking into account the suggested explanations for it, we have concluded that [two senior McLaren engineers] were aware that confidential Ferrari information was being leaked through a mole and were prepared to use that information for McLaren’s benefit in the design of the 2007 and 2008 cars."
organisation, and the report reveals that even a ’Senior McLaren management figure’ was aware of what was going on.
It states the unidentified senior McLaren management figure advised the team to abandon work on a secret technical development because of the spy case surrounding the team.
But the bottom line is that it all came from the top at McLaren.
According to the FIA’s report, on August 8, a senior McLaren engineer reported a decision reached by a senior member of McLaren’s management to junior staff members, informing them that they were to abandon their efforts on the development of the then-current McLaren car. Apparently, the information illegally obtained from Ferrari convinced McLaren to scrap their plans and start over, to build on the knowledge they had obtained from Ferrari.
Recent reports have Mercedes-Benz developing a possible alternative Formula One program, one that does not involve McLaren.
What the FIA ought to do is ban Mercedes-Benz and McLaren from Formula One for a decade.
The level of corruption within their organization permates the essence of both companies.
They’re like a cancer on the sport and should be dealt with in the same fashion.
Source: Auto Sport