Narain Karthikeyan, HRT, Melbourne, 2012

Karthikeyan hits back at “crybaby” Vettel

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Narain Karthikeyan, HRT, Melbourne, 2012In the round-up: Narain Karthikeyan says Sebastian Vettel’s criticism of him was “really unprofessional”.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Don’t be a cry baby, Karthikeyan tells Vettel (The Times of India)

“For a world champion to say things like that is really shameful. It is really unprofessional. For a driver who has achieved so much to take out his frustrations on me just because he is having a difficult year is really sad. One does not expect a professional sportsman to be such a cry baby.”

Crash suggests Vettel is under pressure (BBC)

“One leading F1 figure told me: “‘It was completely Vettel’s fault – he needed to give Karthikeyan more space. He only had to clear the last inch and he cut across the front of him. He was showing a bit of frustration and it bit him.'”

Petrov blames Vettel for Karthikeyan incident (GP Update)

“Karthikeyan didn?t do anything unnecessary – didn?t hit him, didn?t change direction sharply. Sebastian overtook him and started to turn. But Narain was going straight.”

On Bahrain (The Buxton Blog)

“There is an allocated media hotel and media shuttles have been laid on. I will be avoiding both. It?s just too much of an obvious target for those wishing to get their message across to an international audience.”

Bahrain and Formula 1 (Joe Saward)

“It is just a shame that the final doubts about the place were not swept away with invitations to the event for Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, the two major human rights organisations in the world. If they had come to the party and said that all was well, then no-one would have any worries.”

Alan Baldwin via Twitter

“French PM Francois Fillon is visiting Le Castellet tomorrow. Le Parisien newspaper says he will announce deal done for French GP in 2013.”

Yas chief hopes Abu Dhabi remains host of F1 Young Drivers Test (The National)

“We would obviously be disappointed if Abu Dhabi didn’t host the Young Drivers’ Test because it has become a part of our season, but I can understand the teams’ concerns.”

Gary Anderson?s review of the F1 teams after two races (BBC)

“In the last two years, Red Bull’s big benefit was in having a car on which they did not have to do much work at a race meeting. But in Malaysia, for the first time ever, I saw them changing torsion bars, roll-bars, ride heights and so on.”

Tony Fernandes Q&A: Caterham can join the midfield (F1)

“The goal for mid-season is the same as it is for the whole year ahead. We know what is achievable, and breaking into the midfield is a huge challenge, so the reasonable target is tenth again.”

Red Alert (Grand Prix)

“The most pertinent question was why he had gone off. Which brings us back to the radio message; a pretty dumb call, if ever I heard one. Apart from presupposing Perez hadn’t worked out the implications of a DNF for this little team, history shows that asking a F1 driver to slow down is like suddenly discussing the weekend’s shopping while having sex. Or, so I would imagine.”

I know I can count on a second family (Ferrari)

“It’s the not the first time I’ve gone through a difficult moment like this and I know well that things can change quickly, but now is the moment to do my utmost because I want this negative period to come to an end.”

Shear Power ?ǣ Chassis E20-01 Returns to Base (Lotus)

“The chassis we have back here now is Romain?s car from Malaysia, chassis E20-01. We didn?t originally intend to bring this car back, but after the events of Sepang and the damage incurred it made sense bring it back for repairs as well as getting everything else we need done.”

Formula One Star Lewis Hamilton travels to Manila for Soccer Aid 2012 (McLaren)

“Lewis Hamilton spent two days this week in Manila with UNICEF, the world?s leading children?s organisation, making a short film about street children that will be shown during Soccer Aid on May 27th 2012, on ITV 1.”

Comment of the day

Much praise for the efforts of marshals from several readers yesterday, including this from TimG:

We seldom hear much about it, but motor racing at every level is completely dependent on the time and goodwill of volunteers who perform a range of essential tasks, mostly without payment or acknowledgement. Having been involved in grass roots-level motorsport in the UK, you really get to appreciate the efforts of the dedicated and highly skilled people who give up their time ?ǣ and often take similar risks to the drivers and pit crew ?ǣ to make the sport work properly. It?s easy to criticise officialdom at motor races, but doing the job is incredibly difficult to get right all the time ?ǣ and most of the time they do get it right.

I’m not surprised that (most) teams are grateful for having their cars brought back safely. I have vivid memories from years ago, when I was working on a Formula Ford at Castle Combe, of the marshal who took the time and trouble to return a body panel that had come off on the far side of the circuit after contact. Above and beyond, really.

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228 comments on “Karthikeyan hits back at “crybaby” Vettel”

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  1. Karthikeyan – Darned Gurken.

  2. NK just isn’t up to scratch. He is just horrible menace.

    The only think NK adds is a certain randomness to races, you never know who NK will impede or take out each and every session and race. He is like the menaces from Mario cart a banana, oil slick, lightning strike, surpise boxes.

    NK seems to have no spacial awareness, which is what you would think all top level driver would have.

    1. @bearforce : Roflol@NK being a Mario menace!!! :) :) Ur comment just made my day,sir!!!

    2. @bearforce1 By your logic Kobayashi is the same. You never know what’s going to happen in an overtake. Last year Liuzzi took out nearly half the field at Monza (or Spa), so he doesn’t have spatial awareness as well? And If Vettel had so much awareness why did he try to pass him at the corner whereas he would have had ample opportunity after it. Not that Im defending any driver but the argument is that a racing incident is being blown out of propotion.

  3. I sincerely think Sebastian has a problem with his fingers…

  4. I think Vettel is the ‘dill’ be it Karthikeyan’s fault, Vettel should have known better than to get so close to a backmarker…dont think Vettel can argue about that. Im sure last years Red Bull wouldve cleared the HRT by about a meter LOL… a snapshot of the difference in performance of this years and last years Red Bull : a HRT front wing :)

    Oh I remember that Heidfeld accident…he seemed to suffer from tunnel vision

    1. The last time a Red Bull got close to a back marker, Mark Webber ended up flying through the air.

      How people forget these things…

  5. Maybe FIA should put vettel and karthikeyan in a steel cage and let them settle it in the ring. And make Stone cold steve Austin the guest referee. Both get a taste of the stone cold stunner and everybody is happy! :D

  6. I wonder if people would still side with NK if he had taken out OneLapWonder

    1. @ridiculous see comment by @malleshmagdum above: for me too it’s not so much about who’s fault the incident was, as it is about Vettel repeating to at least two tv-crews how much of a bad driver/idiot NK, that’s just not very professional, and he should have apologised after landing in Europe at the latest, but so far didn’t.

      Not helped by Horner coming in to say something akin to “let those backmarkers go race on a different track, they may be in F1 but as long as we don’t fear their speed (and protest them?) they should get out of the way.”, but that’s typical of Horner, I suppose.

    2. I wonder, who is this “onelapwonder” you are talking about?

      Vettel – who was just magic in qualfying with that Red Bull in the past 2 years
      But Vettel was taken out by the crash, so that gets rig of the most obvious choice
      So who is on offer:
      Trulli – king of qualifying and leading the Trulli train in races
      Webber – who used to be an ace qualifyer as well
      Hamilton – who has a knack for nailing the lap, if he has a good car to do it with and feels in the right zone
      Or maybe even Ayrton Senna who produced superb and sometimes unbelievable laps in qualifying?

  7. I’m going to go a bit off-topic now but there is something else i need to get off my chest. When drivers are passing certain “slower drivers” and that person doesn’t jump out of the way immediately they have a tendency to wave angrily or give him the bird. I’ve always felt this to be dangerous. All the cars are wearing the FIA road safety stickers so aren’t they sending the wrong message here? Normal people have to keep both hands at the wheel so, why make an exception for F1 drivers? Yesterday someone who was waving at his wife after he had dropped her off. He nearly crashed into the back of me and if that wasn’t bad enough, he was driving a Fiat Panda!

  8. There’s more to Petrov’s interview. He goes on saying: “In much the same way Pic didn’t let me through in Malaysia for an entire lap, despite being one lap behind. Sure, I was mad at him, but I did understand that unnecessary maneuvers can lead to disastrous consequences.”

    So, in essence, the frustration here stems from the fact that Vettel does not recognize lapping backmakers as part of the racing challenge. As a professional pilot and world champion he should have taken more caution while attempting the maneuver, since he KNEW the car ahead is slow and is being driven on a wet track by a driver with little experience.

    Nevertheless, I do agree this was Karthikeyan’f fault, but I had a lot of sympathy for him initially, just because of how rude and arrogant Vettel was about the entire thing. But now, it is getting ridiculous with Narain calling Seb a craybaby and stuff. What is this? A kindergarten?

  9. I honestly don’t see why people are discussing whose fault the accident is. That doesn’t excuse Vettel from what he’s said! In my opinion, if Vettel was a true world champion he would be very embarrassed for what he’s said and would come out and apologize for calling a fellow racer an idiot.

    It doesn’t even matter whose fault it is. How the hell did JB react when Vettel took him out in Spa? And at that time everyone had the rights to criticize Vettel for taking other drivers out.

    Oh, and this is the guy who was very pissed when Alonso didn’t even intentionally put him on the grass in Monza just to do it intentionally to JB a month later. Come on man…

    I’d say Vettel should be very very careful before criticizing another driver for not looking where they’re going.

    1. This is the best comment of the entire debate for me. If he came out and admitted that it was a mistake to say what he said then I think that he would earn a lot more respect. Reminds me of when Hamilton went into Massa’s garage to shake his hand, although admittedly it did take about 10 races!

      1. Well wait for round 10 then, what’s the hurry?

      2. But Hamilton wasn’t the one calling Massa names and weaving his hands, Massa was the one going all crazy and many of their incidents are up to debate. Is not like Hamilton was always at fault.
        I don’t think he even needed to go to Massa, he probably only went because media was driving him crazy asking if he talked to Massa.
        Anyway going to Massa was an act of reconciliation not an act of apology since he had nothing to apologize. He never called Massa names.

    2. @aced – I’m not a Vettel fan, but I don’t really see why he should apologise.

      1) “Cucumber” is a great insult and I shall be applying it myself.
      2) It’s possible to react to such insults with a massive shrug, a yawn and a “whatever”, which is at about the same level of childishness as calling someone a “cry baby”.
      3) Vettel and Karthikeyan are not colleagues; therefore I don’t see that it is unprofessional to trade insults. It’s part of the passion of F1 racing.
      4) The modern fads for “respect” and constantly apologising for everything as a PR exercise seem utterly hypocritical to me. Governments even apologise on behalf of their citizens for events that happened before they were born. What if Vettel says sorry but is not really sorry? Best to wait for both drivers to calm down, get some perspective, grow up a little if needs be, and maybe as @john-h says they will shake hands later – and mean it.

      1. I agree, especially about point number 1 — in fact, I’ve already started using it to excellent effect!

        When people are forced to apologize because their employer’s PR department demands it, does anyone come out of that feeling like anything useful has happened? If the two of them decide talk to each other and sort things out a few races from now — or even at the last race of the season — fine. At least we’ll be reasonably sure it wasn’t completely artificial and orchestrated.

        1. @aka_robyn

          +1 on the apology thing

          1. I also agree on the fake apologies thing. But I never said that Vettel should apologize for PR reasons. He should apologize because he should realize that he’s done something wrong.

  10. Everyone seems to be bumping into the HRTs. These incidents are not their fault, but i think we would be better off without these cars in the race. their pace is just so off. if you were driving a honda civic in the GP and you hadnt made any driving mistakes, let all the other cars past giving them plenty of room, there would still be more risk of an accident just because of the speed difference. Looking at some of the on board footage from the last race, the HRTs seem to be almost standing still in some corners compared to other cars.

    Even in a wet race where the difference in pace between cars is very much decreased, and with safety car periods, the HRTs were still 2 laps down. I mean what is the point?

    1. These cars are within the rules, so they are part of the sport, which means we are not better off without them. When they are not within the rules they are off the track.

    2. That’s a harsh view! The designers and engineers have still managed to build a car which can compete legally, but on a tiny budget compared to some of the other teams. If I were in that position, I’d be proud to be racing my cars even if they came in last every week.

      1. @dirgegirl I agree with you. Out of 12 teams someones going to finish on the bottom. The fact that through all their hardship and troubles they have a car which can compete, as you say, legally and on a reduced budget is fabulous. I’ve said this earlier on different posts on HRT and I’ll say it again that they seem to have a desire and the determination to be in Formula 1 which is really heartening to see. It is not the drivers fault that the car is slow but then they are doing the best they can. If they can stick it who knows maybe 10 years (very optimistic here ) would we see a world champion driving from an HRT? I can only hope…

    3. but i think we would be better off without these cars in the race. their pace is just so off

      That’s what the 107% rule is effectively there for, but where do you draw the line… are you saying that it should be the 106% rule instead? Personally I think as long as the cars are faster than GP2 by a couple of seconds, then they’re fast enough to be in F1.

  11. Good job Kartihikeyan you have already repaid TATA (by taking out Vettel and getting all this publicity) all the millions they are paying HRT for running you. Let’s face it that’s the only way your gonna get publicity in F1. Good job keep it up TATA needs you.

  12. I dont get this, he said he made a mistake by getting on the white line which caused Wheel spin, so he jinked in. He had no choice. This is a racing incident and we should not even be talking about it.

  13. Well, it seems everyone has a strong oppinion on the Vettel/Karthikeyan incident and their subsequent reactions. For me, there is only one thing it highlights: Blue flags need to be seriously looked into.

    If there were no blue flags, I do not think this incident would have occurred. Vettel would have been more carefull when passing, as there would be no expectation for him to get out of the way. Simillarly, I would think Karthikeyan would have been more carefull, as he would know Vettel would have had to fight his way past.

    Added to this, I do not believe Vettel would have made the comments he did, because Karthikeyan would have had the right to race his own race.

    I personally think that blue flags take away from F1, but it’s not up to me to make such a descision. I do think they should be seriously looked at, though. With DRS available and the differences in car performance between the front runners and backmarkers, it should not take more skill than the drivers have to lap cars and make for more exciting racing.

    1. @drmouse That’s a good point. Without the blue flags, this would be much more straightforward.

    2. Agreed….. if a car is fast enough to lap another then the overtake move is going to happen either way. If there were no blue flags then the move would be in racing speeds for both cars, so it would be fun to watch and more importantly the fast and the slow driver would pay attention.

      If a fast car for whatever reason would be out of place then the leader would have to sweat to make the overtake stick which is the fare thing to do, not breeze pass around …..

      Maybe the new teams need the blue flags to go away so then they can gather evenly their race data so they can improve their speed and race performance.

      Kimi was asking in Australia why the marshals waved the blue flag to him. In some specific times the thing was really ridiculous…. even in tv was really obnoxious …. blue flags everywhere….. I think that Webber was asking the same thing (not sure 100%, I heard it in flying lap).

      The difference in qualy is smaller that 107% but in race pace I think that it is much greater….. and the ban of refueling and the Pirellis are not helping to close the gap.

      The first step in that direction is already taken: they can unlap themselves under a safety car. So FIA get rid the blue flags…..

  14. 100% Vettel’s fault, NK got no room, plus he was recovering from an off. Vettel had no right to say what he did, I’ve never liked him.

    1. “I’ve never liked him”-then why try to explain your point?? I dislike Hamilton,but does that make me spew vitriol about him all over the place??

    2. Watch the replays and hear what Narain initially said about getting wheelspin and causing the collision.

  15. NK is a real blunder, period.

  16. It’s funny this is just the sort of incident Hamilton was having last year. I think it’s an early indicator that Vettel is rattled and unfocused in the same way Hamilton was. I don’t think it will be three in a row for Vettel I’m afraid.

    As for the incident itself it’s a 50/50 I think. They both could have left more room. They both tried to move back to the racing line to soon. If Vettel is to get a third world title he needs to learn to avoid this type of incident. Blaming Karthikeyan or any other driver won’t help him on jot.

  17. Keith, today daily round-up must have recorded highest number of comments till now.

    1. @vickyy Actually, as I write this I see Wednesday’s had 100 more!

  18. I Love The Pope
    30th March 2012, 13:25

    Chicane Karthikeyan speaks!

  19. Isn’t all this “sportsmanship” just too overrated? I think so.
    Maybe some want to think that F1 drivers are the sort of 50’s gentlemen racer. But they aren’t.
    If they didn’t furiously hate to loose then they wouldn’t be there.
    Some drivers are better at handling the press then others, and Vettel surely showed that he wasn’t Button’esque good at it. That said. Is it really PR trained robots that we want to see?
    I don’t.
    I like when people, not just racing drivers, speak what they actually think.
    F1 is so politically correct these days, that it does get really annoying.
    How many videos aren’t there on youtube of 80’s-90’s drivers showing the “bird” to left and right because they were held back for half a second.
    It might look silly and childish, but I think it gives them some character.
    It does show their human side.
    We all talk trash about others, and we all get annoyed when things get hot.
    If F1 drivers don’t show that they do the same, it removes their human side and for me at least, makes it harder to associate with them.
    Now Karthikeyan strikes back, and he show that he is just as childish as Vettel, but you know what? I like that. Let them talk trash about each other, even a fight on track would be fantastic, though probably too much to ask for.
    F1 is about passion, and when drivers get mad show that they care, show that they have faults and most importantly show their passion.
    Like when Schumacher, glowing red hot, came storming into the McLaren garage to have “a word..” with DC after their coming together at Spa.
    It was silly yes, but I loved it!

    1. 100% agree

  20. Karthikeyan has made some pretty poor attempts at getting out of the way in the past. I think what this comes down to are the rules concerning the blue flags. Under those rules, Karthikeyan must get out of the way and let Vettel past and this is perhaps why he received the penalty. This seems contradictory to the idea that the car behind is always responsible for passing safely. Karthikeyan did “jink” to the right but Vettel shouldn’t have moved over too quickly either. Racing Incident.

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