Well yes it is collusion, but I see nothing wrong with it, or unethical, except for the paying for the transactions part. That goes over the top.
In the unlikely even I was ever near the bottom of the standings
, I'd love to play spoiler. That could be fun to do. Of course me being me, I'd be going after both of you where I could.
Problem here is of course that bottom of the standings people would need some coaching to actually do this well.