Disaster as drivers retire from first and second places (Red Bull race review)

Mark Webber, Red Bull, Korea, 2010

The Korean Grand Prix ended with one RB6 caked in mud and another in fire extinguisher foam.

This couldn’t have been a more crushing result for Red Bull.

Having annexed the front row of the grid for the eighth time this year they came away with nothing after a crash and a blown engine.

Sebastian Vettel Mark Webber
Qualifying position 1 2
Qualifying time comparison (Q3) 1’35.585 (-0.074) 1’35.659
Race position
Laps 45/55 18/55
Pit stops 1 0

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Sebastian Vettel

Looked out of sorts in practice, hampered by a puncture in the second session and struggling in traffic on Saturday morning.

But it all came together in qualifying where he edged Webber by a tiny margin to claim his ninth pole position of 2010.

Pulled out a 2.8 second lead in the first lap of the race, though his advantage was erased by the return of the safety car. When the safety car came out for a third time he had a 5.7 second lead over Fernando Alonso.

He led every lap until the 46th tour, when his Renault engine died as he passed the pits:

This is not a nice moment, but I think it was a difficult race for all of us today. To be at the front of the field for the whole race, controlling it and looking after the tyres, I think there?s nothing more we could have done.

All in all we did an almost perfect job today and also yesterday in qualifying. It was getting dark towards the end of the race; I had a medium visor on my helmet and it was hard to see some of the bumps on the track or the reference for braking, but the guys finished the race so there must have been some visibility.
Sebastian Vettel

It’s the latest in a string of car problems for Vettel in races and qualifying, which also compromised his performance in Bahrain, Australia, Spain, Canada and Turkey. The team confirmed the unit he was using was on its third race.

Compare Sebastian Vettel’s form against his team mate in 2010

Mark Webber

Headed Vettel in Q2 but had the tables turned on him in Q3, leaving him second on the grid.

Crashed out on lap 19 resulting in his first no-score since the European Grand Prix and losing the championship lead to Alonso:

It was totally my fault, I got on the kerb on the exit of Turn 12 and it was a very slow-motion moment off the back of that kerb ?ǣ it was my mistake and it wasn?t my day.

I thought I?d managed to catch it, but I lost the car and made contact with the wall, nothing too heavy, but it was enough to bring the car back to the other side of the track and then Nico hit me, which wrecked his race as well.

Conditions were okay by the time we were racing ?ǣ on the edge, but okay.
Mark Webber

Compare Mark Webber’s form against his team mate in 2010

2010 Korean Grand Prix

Browse all 2010 Korean Grand Prix articles

Image ?? KAVO

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78 comments on Disaster as drivers retire from first and second places (Red Bull race review)

  1. Mikos said on 25th October 2010, 23:55

    I’m still a webber fan, and was really, really dissapointed by his error. But you need a selective memory not to have seen anyones favourite driver make a clunking error at one time or another, there’s are human factor which makes them capable of errors – which is part of what makes f1 so great. Its a small margin between getting away with an error like Hamo at Spa (and being remembered for a great drive) and ending up in the wall as webber did.

    I’m frustrated by redbulls stated ‘race to the end of mathematical possibilities policy’ as its hampering them and contributing to Webber and themselves losing to Alonso and Ferrari the drivers championship. It also misreads the nature of the comptetion.

    My opinion they should have backed the leading driver which in the case was webber after 75% – 80% of the season around Italy, and back vettel in as much as a backup, i.e. should webber retire via mechanical or otherwise vettels there for the win anmd potential WDC. Why? becuase ferrari had done so with Alonso and Massa’s clear 1 and 2 driver status and the fact that other cars were going to be as comptetitive (or more so) on the remaining tracks.

    I think had the shoe been on the other foot and the roles reversed (vettel ahead) they would have done so at least privately and influenced the outcomes.

    I think it’s an interesting debate and I believe comes down to whether in f1 the ends justify the means. I’d argue that it’s results that are remembered and if you are up against a team like ferrai who has clearly decided the ‘ends justify’, you need to alter your tactics. If Alsonso wins WDC no-one will remember Horners high minded let the drivers race to the end policy – they’ll only remember him as a team boss that didn’t maximise the drivers /teams potential, and in my view misunderstands the nature of competing in f1.

    I would love Massa at Brazil to be ahead of Alonso…what an ethical dilemas.

    • Mikos said on 26th October 2010, 0:10

      I should ad – what I’d love to see is Massa ahead of Alonso racing for the win at Brazil…but I’d prefer to see webber romp away with it and Alonso retire!

      • xabregas said on 26th October 2010, 0:52

        Don´t forget Massa “gave” to Raikonen the 1º
        position in 2007´s Brasil race so if needed it´ll happen again.
        The truth is i don´t believe Massa can pull that off, he is to far way of alonso´s pace.

        • Alistair said on 26th October 2010, 20:21

          If Massa gives the win (or serious points) to Alonso, he’s finished. If he doesn’t give the win (or serious points) to Alonso and he can, he’s finished. If he can’t give the win (or serious points) to Alonso, he’s finished.

          In summary, Massa is finished as a top-line driver in a top-line team. He should look to a new team to rebuild his tattered reputation and image. I would advise him to go to Renault. Kubica is way overrated: no one would expect much from Massa there. But he would exceed expectations.

    • Alistair said on 26th October 2010, 20:13

      Red Bull is Vettel’s team: Red Bull won’t back Webber over Vettel. How anyone can doubt this is amazing. There have been rumours throughout F1 history of one team or another favouring one driver or another. But how many teams have instantly and nigh unanimously blamed one of their drivers over the other for a 50:50 racing incident?! How many teams have taken the new front wing off of one car and given it to the other driver because he broke his one?!

      Christian has recently gone on record as saying, publicly, that Red Bull are building the team’s future around Vettel: this whilst Webber has a much better chance of winning the WDC! Red Bull could do with a Massa in the no: 2 car, not Webber.

  2. Regis said on 26th October 2010, 0:00

    Webber is just not a top class driver, he should have the title in the bag by now.

    Vettel is fast but reckless and not lucky this year.

    • Alistair said on 26th October 2010, 20:03

      With by far the best car on the grid all season, the Red Bull drivers are in danger of losing the championships they should already have won.

      I’m surprised more hasn’t been made of Webber’s crash. Why did he turn his wheel so that he would come back onto the racing line? Why didn’t he just turn into the wall, off the racing line, and hit the brakes. I seriously think he was gunning for Lewis. Nico tweeted this:

      ‘Don’t understand why Webber didn’t hit the brakes. Was crazy (evidently) to roll back over the track’.

  3. JamesC1991 said on 26th October 2010, 1:29

    RBR must back Mark now.
    Vettel will have his moment next year or sometime in the coming years,this is Marks best ever chance to win a championship and if he doesn’t do it this year then he never will cause time is not on his side and is not a top class driver like Alonso,Hamilton,Kubica and Vettel.
    The pressure got too Webber on sunday,after the SC you could almost sense he was going to drop it cause he was very lose on the opening lap after the SC went in and then eventually dropped it.
    I’m a Vettel fan and was truly gutted for the whole day on sunday,the guy drove a brilliant race,probably the 2nd best of his career after Monza 08 and for it too happen so near the end was just heartbreaking and he has lost 66 points due to car problems this year,so any silly Webber fans who say Mark has been quicker all year and deserves to be ahead of Sebastian are talking utter garbage,even though he had that strong spell from Spain to Montreal.
    with Seb it’s like watching Kimi who I also support all over again from 2005 when he had so many engine failures it was a joke and the common theme is Newey,always builds a brilliant car but seems to be highly unreliable.
    Vettel really should be out of site but it’s part of F1 and if Red Bull have any sense they will give Webber the No 1 role.

    • Mikos said on 26th October 2010, 1:42

      Couldn’t agree more, and good to read a pragmatic opinion from a fan with some objectivity. As I’ve statedd I’m a webber fan, have been for ages since he was walking away from flipped mercs. Webber fans have to have some perspective too – he’s not as quick as vettel at majority of tracks, but if vettels something special webbers no slouch and theres not alot in it. I think the pressure got to him too, he did a greg norman (golf anyone?).

      I unfortunately saw it coming too, I think the no team orders and the fact vettel is so quick contributed to the pressure. It’s a bit like what Brundles said about having shumacher at his best as a teammate. You think you’ve nailed the lap and the guy next door is a tenth quicker, at some point that impacts on you. At least Webbers destinies in his own hands now.

    • Alistair said on 26th October 2010, 20:16

      Christian, Helmut, Newey, Dietrich, et al, might have a different opinion! Red Bull is Vettel’s team. That McLaren isn’t Hamilton’s team can be seen first in their hiring a top quality driver such as Button; and their not insisting on his helping Hamilton – to their detriment, I might add.

  4. wasiF1 (@wasif1) said on 26th October 2010, 2:32

    How does the pendulum swings? Webber started the race with 14 points lead in the WC after the chequered flag now he is 11 points behind the WC leader.

  5. John Cousins said on 26th October 2010, 2:48

    It’s interesting that people say that webber is not a “top class driver”. He has had to work his way up through the **** teams by posting results that punch well above his cars potential. Until he was paired with Vettel he demolished every single one of his team mates and whilst the “wonderkid” (-cough) is maybe a tenth faster, he lacks the overtaking ability of Webber and still (in my humble opinion) lacks the mechancl sympathy that is required to pilot a Newey built car. He has proven on a number of occasions (germany, brasil last year and Monaco / Silverstone this year) that he can drive away from the rest of the field when he is in the right frame of mind and until now he was leading the DRIVERS championship…. for gods sake, enough of the Webber bashing. I give you permission to bash his starts though…. terrible :)

  6. Mikos said on 26th October 2010, 5:48

    They should back webber based on probability and looking at possible outcomes alone. If my calculations are correct Alonso needs to finish 3rd and 4th to win WDC from both Vettel & Webber if Vettel wins both final races and Webber finishes second: Alonso 258, Webber 256, Vettel 256, what a great way to sell enegy drinks, second place!

    To many probabilities favour alonso at this point. Barring alonso breaking down on the parade lap, getting a 10 place grid penalty or starting from outside the top ten in Brazil, vettel should be helping webber in any way possible to maxmise points and see it as not his year and be looking to future years as team no 1.

  7. scott said on 26th October 2010, 6:33

    Their is no doubt vettle is faster but you need to know
    that Webbber is the TALLEST and one of the heaviest (because of his height) drivers in the field.)
    Negatives
    1# Seb weighs 64kg (roughly) and mark 74 this means that in the same space as vettle webber is carrying an extra 10kg. obviously this is the minimum weight of car and driver but this 10kg changes the weight distribution of Mark RB6 campared to vettles while vettle has the heavier car his car is better balanced because the extra weight is in the car not the driver.
    2# Vettle is 5 foot 7″ webber 6 foot 1″ thats 4″ for every mm webbers head sit out of the car this slows him down so he has to fit 6 1″ in virtually the same space as vettle, this would be terribly uncomfortable for him.
    3# another interesting Fact is that the magic weight is 69kg why you ask? because 3/4 of the current world chapions racing in F1 have a exact weight of 69KG i dont think Webber and Jenson and bad driver i think they are highly comparmised simply becasue of their height and weight they have to drive lighter cars to compensate and this wrecks their weight distribution f1 need rules to fix this. :(

    • Mikos said on 26th October 2010, 6:50

      I’d heard this although I wasn’t aware the exact weight rule of 69kg would have that impact. I think James Allen was saying before the korean race that at a previous point in the season redbull made a modification that assisted with acceleration / traction out of the corners and since that update vettel has been more comfortable with the car and subsequently outqulified mark more often.

      • JamesC1991 said on 26th October 2010, 11:51

        yeah I agree 100% with your comment Mikos under mine.
        Only logical thing Red Bull can do now is too give Mark the No 1 slot especially considering what happened at Silverstone and after the Turkish GP crash,team is been built for Sebastian but for this year they must give Webber a chance to win it because as I said already he is not exactly in his prime although he has driven superbly all year apart from Melbourne,Valencia and Korea

  8. And thanks to BBC switching for switching to BBC2 – I missed the last 15 laps!

    • Alistair said on 26th October 2010, 20:06

      Apparently, the BBC is getting hundreds of complaints about this. It’s a bit daft, since the race was replayed in the afternoon and is now on iPlayer: ‘making the unmissable, unmissable’.

  9. Red Bull really shot themselves in the foot now with their equal treatment approach.
    Last year that was the obvious way to treat their drivers(Vettel’s first year at RB),but not this season.
    Had they simply chosen the driver who scored best in the 2 previous seasons as their number one:
    The Turkish incident would not have happened,Mark wouldn’t have forced Sebastian off track in Silverstone and in Hungary the pits would have told Mark to fall back a couple of lengths behind the safety car since Vettel was doing “too good” a job of holding up the pack for him,and couldn’t be reached due to radio transmisson problems.
    Red Bull could have clinched the WCC by now and Vettel could be leading the WDC by 34 points to Alonso (even considering an equal amount of misfortune and technical issues on his car)
    Instead,realistically,their best shot at the WDC title now should be to back Webber as their number one with his lead of 14 points over Vettel and just 2 races to go.
    In that case I suppose they’d better start looking for a driver to build a team around for the future..

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