The FIA has announced the introduction of a registration system for team principals and key engineers and all the F1 teams have agreed to abide by it. This puts them on the same footing as the drivers.
The scheme is a direct result of the Singapore crashgate scandal of 2008, where the Federation had no lever over then Renault team principal Flavio Briatore and senior engineer Pat Symonds over the deliberate accident in the Singapore Grand Prix. At the time only the team itself and the drivers were subject to FIA licences. Now if there were a repeat or an act similarly damaging to the sport, the licences of those involved could be suspended or revoked.
Today the FIA said “All Formula One teams will be required to nominate a number of senior team members to register with the FIA at the start of each season.”
These key men, and women, will have to abide by the FIA Code of Good Standing, which among other points says, “All FIA Licence-Holders and all Participants in International Events must not, in any way whatsoever, infringe the principles of fairness in competition, behave in an unsportsmanlike manner or attempt to inﬂuence the result of a competition in a way that is contrary to sporting ethics, in
particular within the context of betting on the competitions registered on the International Sporting Calendar.”
The concept of “fairness in competition” is pretty wide open and it will be interesting to see if there are any pushes to encourage prosecution on this charge for things which happen in the cut and thrust of F1 competition, which sometimes is not fair, as countless message boards will attest.