It was all winthin the once race - they only held back until the last corner when they took the lead. JV would have lost the championship if he'd finished fourth.
Originally posted by Wolf
But what both 2F-2001 and myself were referring to is collusion between McLaren and Williams teams after Ferrari was stranded in gravel at Jerez, where McLaren drivers 'rode shotgun' for JV to ensure he got enough points to win the title, and only on the last lap assumed the 1-2 finishing order. It's abominale in my book because rival teams settled on race result to ensure the driver of the 3rd team (as guilty as he was) didn't win the title. It is also worth noting that there was a follow-up to this when JV repaid McLaren drivers for services provided (off top of my head, can't remember when/where, my memory is as bad as ever- but he did let them through to return the favour)...
Personally I've never seen it as any worse than normal team orders. It was a mutually beneficial swap, and there was nothing to stop the other drivers ruining the party had they actually been quick enough on the day.