Some people having been asking me about team orders that have occurred in the past so lets take a brief look back at some famous instances in the past...
San Marino 1982 - A boycott by some teams left the field depleted and after both Renault cars retired, Ferrari had a 1-2 with Giles Villeneuve and Didier Pironi and were well clear of the pack so Ferrari ordered their drivers to slow and take it easy. Villeneuve seen this as an order to hold station. Pironi though passed the Canadian but the lead soon changed hands again. Villeneuve thought that the Italian was putting on a show but when Pironi nipped by on the last lap and took the victory, Villeneuve was seething and was irate with his team mate. Tragically he would be killed two weeks later at Zolder.
Melbourne 1998 - McLaren arrived at the opening round of the 1998 season with a car that was much quicker than any other team. They locked out the front row on Saturday and the race was their own to lose. It was decided that whichever driver made the first corner first would be allowed to take the win unchallenged and that both Mika Hakkinen and David Coulthard could run a controlled pace as the team feared unreliability would scupper their hopes if they pushed to the limit. Hakkinen maintained the lead from pole and looked set for a win. However on lap 36 he entered the pits after he misunderstood a radio message (which was later alleged to be interference from a third party) and lost the lead. Coulthard was made aware about the error and with 3 laps to go slowed and allowed the Finnish driver to take the win.
Singapore 2008 - After a poor season, Renault look to have good pace for the inaugural Singapore Grand Prix but a fuel pump issue in Q2 leaves Fernando Alonso in 15th position. Pat Symonds and Nelson Piquet agree that the Brazilian will crash soon after an early stop for Alonso, taking advantage of the pitlane being closed when a safety car is deployed. Piquet crashed his car and Alonso took the victory before the scandal was exposed almost a year later after Piquet was sacked by Renault.