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Renault used team orders: De la Rosa
August 22, 2005 19:40 IST
McLaren test driver Pedro de la Rosa has accused Renault of using illegal 'team orders' to help Formula One title leader Fernando Alonso take second place in Sunday's Turkish Grand Prix.
A Renault team member was heard telling Alonso by radio on lap two, when he was in third place and behind Italian team mate Giancarlo Fisichella: "Fernando, you're faster than Fisi, overtake him."
"What they told Alonso on the radio is a clear example of what is illegal, those were 100 percent team orders," Spaniard De la Rosa, Alonso's compatriot, was quoted by Spain's Marca newspaper as saying on Monday.
"The message was very clear: overtake him. What could not be heard was what they told Fisichella before that," he said.
Alonso finished the race, won by McLaren's Kimi Raikkonen, in second place and leads the championship by 24 points with five grands prix remaining.
McLaren are nine points behind Renault in the constructors' championship.
So-called team orders were banned in Formula One after Ferrari stirred up global uproar by ordering Brazilian Rubens Barrichello to move over for team mate Michael Schumacher at the 2002 Austrian Grand Prix.
Barrichello had led from the start to the final corner, however, and would have won that race -- a far cry from the situation on Sunday when most of Spain would have been urging Fisichella to let their hero past.
Fisichella, asked after qualifying on Saturday how he would react if he was ahead of Alonso, replied: "There are no team orders at Renault but...if Fernando is fighting for the championship and if he needs help from me I will help him."