Dubai 24 Hours organiser defends suspension of Ferrari team

24h Series organiser Creventic has defended its decision to suspend Ferrari team Scuderia Praha over a Dubai 24 Hours collision following criticism from Peter Kox

Dubai 24 Hours organiser defends suspension of Ferrari team

Kox, who shared the Ferrari 458 with Matteo Cressoni, Jiri Pisarik and Matteo Malucelli, wrote an open letter to Creventic outlining his displeasure after the event organiser overruled the race stewards, who had previously decided to issue a 10-place grid penalty for Cressoni's clash with the Primus Racing Ginetta driven by Thomas Martinsson during hour 10.

The Ginetta was written off in the accident, caused by Cressoni rejoining the circuit "from an unexpected angle", while Martinsson had to be cut free from his car and taken to hospital with several fractures.

In correspondence received by Autosport, Creventic said its decision was taken with regret but was a necessary step to ensure that proper driving standards are upheld and "to keep the friendly and special atmosphere for which the 24h Series is well known."

Kox had argued it was unfair for the whole team to be punished rather than just Cressoni.

But Creventic said it hoped drivers would now realise that any "behaviour which causes damage to other teams' vehicles or seriously injures drivers will not only affect the driver who causes such an incident, but also can have an impact on the rest of their team mates and team".

It added: "Endurance racing is a team sport: you win as a team and you lose as a team.

"Strategy, choice of driver line-up, the attitude towards racing and respect for other competitors are all important factors and should be a shared responsibility."

Creventic intimated the Praha car had earned a reputation for being involved in incidents during 2015.

"Last season, Creventic heard several remarks from drivers about the driving style of Scuderia Praha's drivers," it wrote.

"They were taking more risks than usual when overtaking other cars. Some competitors used the word 'aggressive'.

"Official complaints were not made, however these concerns were, on several occasions, shared with the team."

THE FULL STATEMENT FROM CREVENTIC:

Creventic has been asked to respond to an open letter received from Peter Kox regarding the decision not to invite the Scuderia Praha team to the next round of the 24h Series powered by Hankook at Mugello. Peter is a respected driver who has participated in our series for many years and although our usual communication channel is through Scuderia Praha as the official entrant, we are more than happy to explain how Creventic has come to this decision.

Creventic organises races in which gentleman drivers play the most important role. We do believe that respect on and off track, in driving and behaviour, is very important to keep the friendly and special atmosphere for which the 24H Series are well-known.

Creventic wants to organise races in which drivers feel comfortable, safe and enjoy racing. We would like to avoid that achieving a good result in one of our races or the championship becomes more important than respecting the safety of fellow drivers.

Creventic is aware of the fact that all drivers can make mistakes, however, there is a difference in the decisions racing drivers are taking which influences the likeliness of such mistakes. In this particular case, the car of Scuderia Praha did not respect the track limits in an overtaking manoeuvre and when rejoining the track from an unexpected angle, took out Thomas Martinsson in the Primus Racing Ginetta.

As a result, the rescue marshals had to cut off the roof of the Ginetta and Thomas Martinsson was transported to the hospital with several fractures. We have been informed that Thomas Martinsson is likely to recover completely from this accident. The other result of this incident is that the Primus Racing team's Hankook 24h Dubai race was over and the car is damaged beyond repair. This is an example of behaviour Creventic does not want to see in its races.

Last season, Creventic heard several remarks from drivers about the driving style of Scuderia Praha's drivers. They were taking more risks than usual when overtaking other cars. Some competitors used the word "aggressive". Official complaints were not made, however these concerns were, on several occasions, shared with the team. We want to emphasise that the racing incident at Hankook 12h Zandvoort 2014, in a crash between the Scuderia Praha team and the Speedworks Motorsport Ginetta resulted in their driver spending weeks in hospital recovering. The Ginetta driver did not have any influence in this decision.

Endurance racing is a team sport: you win as a team and you lose as a team. Strategy, choice of driver line-up, the attitude towards racing and respect for other competitors are all important factors and should be a shared responsibility. Therefore Creventic decided with regret not to invite Scuderia Praha team for the next round, the Hankook 12h Italy-Mugello.

Creventic went in person to the Scuderia Praha pit box (so not by phone) and explained clearly to team manager Jiri Rozkosny how and why they had made the decision to exclude them from the following round. This decision was not an easy one, as the Scuderia Praha team is a valued customer that has competed in many Creventic events.

Creventic is convinced we need to point out to all our other teams and drivers that we do care about correct driving behaviour and safety. Creventic is aware that the impact of this decision affects the whole Scuderia Praha team, but as pointed out earlier, we consider endurance racing to be a team sport. Therefore, we hope all our 24h Series drivers will realise that such behaviour which causes damage to other teams' vehicles or seriously injures drivers will not only affect the driver who causes such an incident, but also can have an impact on the rest of their team mates and team.

The Creventic races generally have a lot of cars, but always lower than the maximum according the FIA homologation of the circuit. Although according to the FIA track homologation, 107 cars would have been allowed to start at Dubai Autodrome, Creventic stopped accepting entries at 100 participants. The amount of cars is the reason Creventic is so serious about driving behaviour and safety. Entering in the Hankook 24H Dubai, every driver and team member knows that there will be a lot of cars; it is a free choice from every team and driver to accept that challenge or not.

We hope to welcome Scuderia Praha at our 12H race in Zandvoort again. If not, we respect that decision as well.

We are running an FIA sanctioned series. In our FIA-approved regulations is clearly stated that the organisation can refuse an entry without any explanation. This is done to be able to keep control of our own series. In fact, according to us, more series should use common sense to protect what they have achieved and not to be controlled by forces outside their control. Every team is free to enter, but if you do not agree with our system, atmosphere or approach, then it might be better look for another series which is more suitable for you. This is what we stand for.

Creventic is convinced the signal is clear to all drivers and teams. Creventic hopes suspensions in the future will be avoided, however Creventic will not hesitate to act accordingly if we feel it is necessary to protect the way we want enjoy our well beloved endurance sport.

We herewith invite Peter for a cup of coffee at our headquarters in Gennep to exchange ideas about this matter, and what we can do to be able to improve things for everyone involved.

Creventic Team

shares
comments
Kox hits out at Praha Ferrari team's ban from Mugello 12 Hour

Previous article

Kox hits out at Praha Ferrari team's ban from Mugello 12 Hour

Next article

Abt Sportsline swaps from Audi to Bentley for its GT programme

Abt Sportsline swaps from Audi to Bentley for its GT programme
Load comments
The unwanted GT car that changed sportscar racing forever Plus

The unwanted GT car that changed sportscar racing forever

Had FIA GT boss Stephane Ratel had his way, the Maserati MC12 would never have been allowed to set foot in his series. It duly proved the class of the field that most had expected, but the Balance of Performance that its superiority spawned would keep GT1 battles tight and bring long-term benefits that sportscar racing enjoys today

GT
Sep 21, 2021
Why Britain's greatest sportscar was eclipsed on the world stage Plus

Why Britain's greatest sportscar was eclipsed on the world stage

The E-Type may be the most famous of all road-going Jaguars, but that didn't always translate into success on the track. After winning on its competition debut in 1961, motorsport success seemed an inevitability, but things didn’t turn out to be quite that straightforward

GT
Aug 6, 2021
Why the Jaguar E-type remains special at 60 Plus

Why the Jaguar E-type remains special at 60

It’s 60 years since the Jaguar E-type arrived and caused a sensation. As our resident racer Ben Anderson discovered when he got behind the wheel of two special racing versions at Brands Hatch, the thrill of driving them hasn't diminished over time

GT
Jul 31, 2021
The rise of a GT squad responsible for a unique 24-hour racing feat Plus

The rise of a GT squad responsible for a unique 24-hour racing feat

It's a significant achievement to win one 24-hour race in a year, let alone two, and with different manufacturers, but that's exactly what ROWE Racing did in 2020 at the Nurburgring and Spa. This weekend's German classic offers the DTM newcomer a chance of another unique double to add to its growing collection of accolades

GT
Jun 3, 2021
The new threat facing motorsport's greatest success story Plus

The new threat facing motorsport's greatest success story

The manufacturers were unconvinced – and even hostile – when Stephane Ratel launched GT3 in 2006. Now, 15 years on from its debut, they’ve sold more than 2000 cars and counting, but its continued expansion puts the increasingly globalised category at risk of losing its roots

GT
May 25, 2021
The Lamborghini teams plotting to stop a RAM raid on British GT Plus

The Lamborghini teams plotting to stop a RAM raid on British GT

With the Silver pairings that dominated 2020 now banned, Mercedes pair Yelmer Buurman and Ian Loggie could be in the box seat after winning last year's Pro-Am crown. But a swarm of Lamborghinis, with the defending outright champion among them, will ensure they face tough opposition

GT
May 21, 2021
How McLaren’s GT3 ‘single-seater’ defies expectations Plus

How McLaren’s GT3 ‘single-seater’ defies expectations

Time in a thoroughbred racer leaves you searching for time in yourself, especially when the rewards for total commitment are so high, as our man discovered at Snetterton

GT
Apr 28, 2021
How Ferrari's F1 protege became a Mercedes GT prodigy Plus

How Ferrari's F1 protege became a Mercedes GT prodigy

Raffaele Marciello once appeared to be Ferrari’s next Italian F1 star, but is now under the pay of its German arch-rival in GTs – and he’s very happy with his life

GT
Apr 8, 2021