Toro Rosso to Sebastien Bourdais: UR Fired

Scott Benjamin

Sebastien Bourdais rounds a corner during a test session at the Catalonia racetrack in Montmelo, near Barcelona, Spain, on March 9, 2009. (AP Photo/Manu Fernandez)

If you're watching the automotive blogs today, then you've probably already heard the latest Formula One news. Actually, this is just the latest twist in a story that's been building for about a month, or so. Keeping it brief, here's what's happened so far: Sebastien Bourdais, a 30-year-old driver for the Red Bull-owned Toro Rosso Formula One team was fired. He was replaced by 19-year-old Jamie Alguersuari, the youngest driver in Formula One history. As cruel as it sounds to say this, drivers get fired and hired all the time in motorsports, so usually a driver firing isn't particularly newsworthy. But what's grabbing headlines today is exactly how the Toro Rosso team went about firing Bourdais.

I won't keep you in suspense any longer -- Bourdais has said that Red Bull Racing owner Dietrich Mateschitz notified him that he was fired via text message. Can you believe that? I mean, here's a guy who began his career at just 10 years old racing karts, he's won championships in the French F3 series and in the International F3000 series, he was the CART Rookie of the Year in 2003, he won the Champ Car title four times in four consecutive years (2004, 2005, 2006 and 2007), he's a seven-time competitor in the 24 Hours of Le Mans and he's raced on the Toro Rosso F1 team for a season and a half.

Now, I fully understand that because Bourdais failed to produce a single win in his last 27 races, he had to be let go. However, and be completely honest with yourself when you answer this question, do you think that Sebastien Bourdais deserved more than just a text message to notify him that he's been fired?

I think that's pretty cold.

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