F1 Team Accused Of Ordering Driver To Crash

We’ll admit that we haven’t exactly always been kind to NASCAR on this here interblog in the past. Sure, we’ve called it white trash and yes, we’ve mocked its fans. We’ve ridiculed the Stone Age cars and the endless driving in circles. We don’t care for the corporate faux-Americana BS surrounding it or the WWE-style trumped up “personalities” or “feuds.”

F1 crash

(Motoring: You are doing it incorrectly.)

We don’t deny we’ve said all those things in the past, but we’re also willing to give credit where credit is due. One has to admit that NASCAR’s “rubbin’s racin’” style can be - dare we say - exciting at times. And while teams and drivers are often caught using extra millimeters and centimeters to gain an illegal advantage, the subterfuge is part of the sport’s charm. At least they aren’t rigging potentially fatal crashes, using their drivers’ lives as pawns to squeeze a couple more bucks out of the prize purse - like Formula One.

But that’s exactly what Renault is accusing of doing at a race last year. As if Formula OneĀ  wasn’t evil and soulless enough, now they’re willing to sacrifice drivers for one measly win. From SKY SPORTS:

Renault has been summoned in front of the sport’s governing body to account for Nelson Piquet’s crash at the Singapore Grand Prix last year.

Suspicions have arisen because Renault’s star driver Fernando Alonso won the night race after enjoying the advantage of refuelling just before Piquet’s crash, which introduced a safety car period.

Piquet has denied all claims he was ordered to crash, instead insisting he spun off because he was pushing too hard. But after being dismissed from the team in August, Piquet described the team’s Italian boss Flavio Briatore as his executioner.

To put that in NASCAR terms, they ordered the driver to crash so they’d finish the race under caution, securing a victory for Renault. It’s an incredibly serious charge to level, obviously. Not something you’d just casually accuse someone of doing. In fact, it’s hard to imagine how someone would even consider ordering a high-speed crash when there are real, live humans involved. Let’s just go ahead and blame it on the fact Renault is French. In retrospect, it’s amazing they didn’t just order their driver to surrender to the German competition.