Originally posted by HoldenRT
One of the consistancies is that whoever is Ferrari's title rival seems to cop the brunt of the rulings. In 05 it was Renault vs McLaren = no funny business. In 06 it was Renault vs Ferrari = penalties for both but Renault copping the short end of the stick. Last year it was McLaren vs Ferrari and McLaren got a 100 million penalty, as well as others. This year it's McLaren vs Ferrari, and also have gotten alot of penalties. It's strange how many Renault got in 06, but haven't got any since.
The thing is, this year there isn't any I can look at and say that the stewards got it wrong. Imo all have been correct choices. So some blame has to go to McLaren, Lewis and Heiki. I'm not sure if Ferrari drivers would have copped the same penalties, and quite frankly would be shocked if they ever got the amount of penalties that McLaren have had in the last 12 months. Let's put Jean Todt as Max's replacement, I'm sure he would ensure this happens. But Lewis and Heiki haven't done themselves any favours.
The problem is it's hard to pinpoint one incident and say that it's definately wrong, the Alonso Massa one at Monza 06 was one where I felt that way. I didn't feel that way about the Lewis one, or the one back at Sepang. The Heiki one in France was maybe harsh, but he did clearly block the lap. But it's not about any one incident but more about a trend that goes back even past 2003. If Williams or Honda suddenly start winning races next year, expect their penalty rate to increase.
It was funny business in 2005 as well. Remember Japan? Alonso cut the chicane when overtaking Klien. He - on the contrary to a certain mr Hamilton - realized his mistake, gave position back to Klien immediately, and then overtook him properly. All well one might think, but the stewards thought otherwise. Some laps (!!!) later Alonso was ordered to give position back to Klien again.
At this point Klien was way back, Alonso more or less had to stop on track and wait for him. Klien passed, Alonso overtook him a third time. Yet a few laps later Aloso was told it was all a mistake, it had been a correct overtaking when he did it after giving back position the first time. How nice. : . This dabbling from the stewards (probably) cost Alonso the race.
Had nothing to do with favouring or hampering anybody though, the WDC was already settled, but it shows that some stewards probably should be better off having another job. Or F1 should be better off without them, rather.
I've never understood the criteria for becoming a race steward, btw. What merits do they have? Anybody ever asks for their CV? Even in something as silly as the dog world you must have some qualifications and merits for becoming a judge and aspirants have to prove they are able before they are allowed to judge at a dog show. Does something similar exist in F1 racing? Now we have the same chief steward at all races, take it or leave it, but the other two? One should be from the country arranging the race and the other one from a country NOT represented on track. That means one of them can be from Bahrain and the other one from Outer Mongolia. No offence to these countries, but their F1 traditions are not very strong.... :