Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Hockenheim, 2012

Vettel and Hamilton at odds over unlapping

F1 Fanatic round-upPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Hockenheim, 2012In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton defends his driving after being criticised by Sebastian Vettel and Christian Horner for unlapping himself during the German Grand Prix.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso cruises to German Grand Prix victory (The Guardian)

Sebastian Vettel: “It’s a bit stupid to disturb the leaders. I think that potentially lost us the position to Jenson [Button].”

Cry baby: Hamilton slams Vettel as German Grand Prix fallout turns into public spat (The Mirror)

Lewis Hamilton: “It doesn?t really bother me what he says, I guess. It shows his maturity. I don?t think I?ve made any silly decisions throughout the race. I had nothing to gain apart from staying out of the way of my team mate.”

Vettel and Horner slam Hamilton (Sky)

Christian Horner: “Why was he interfering with the race leaders? He should have respected the fact that they were ahead on the track.”

F1 Fanatic via Twitter

“Vettel doing himself no favours calling Hamilton’s unlapping ‘stupid’. Remember the Kubica/Vettel/Hamilton move at Interlagos ’08.”

Intelligent Alonso shows he has all the answers (BBC)

“After standing on his Ferrari’s nose to milk the applause, Alonso turned to Button and said: ‘You couldn’t beat me?’ He then pointed to Vettel and said: ‘He couldn’t either.'”

2012 German Grand Prix (McLaren)

Hamilton: “My second-lap puncture was incredibly unfortunate: there was debris scattered across the full width of the track and I didn?t have any option other than to drive straight through it. What?s more frustrating is that, at the time, I was the eighth car through ?ǣ so to be the one to get the puncture is just cruel luck.”

Ferrari Still Not The Fastest Car, Says Domenicali (Speed)

“I believe we still don?t have the fastest car, if we had the fastest car maybe it would be easier to win. We need to improve the car, and we need to make sure our car is good in all the different conditions, wet/dry, different kinds of tyres, and so on.”

McLaren MP4-27 – revised sidepod design (F1)

“The extensive list of updates include lower and more sculptured sidepods, new exhausts, new radiator installation, a revised floor in front of the rear tyres, a new diffuser, new rear wing endplates and modified brakes ducts.”

Ferrari told to ignore RBR technical row (Autosport)

Stefano Domenicali: “When I first saw the note from the technical delegate, I said ‘stay focused on our job today.’ This is something that engineers see and they try to think about. But no, stay focused on what you have to do. Forget about what is happening.”

Ecclestone’s absence fuels talk of charges (The Telegraph)

“After his office intimated that he would fly in late on Saturday, Ecclestone apparently had a change of heart, saying that he did not want to be ‘a distraction’. German media had speculated on Friday that Ecclestone might be arrested if he attended the race.”

German GP – Conference 4 (FIA)

Button on his flat spot during the final stint: “It gave me a little bit of a headache, but that was about it. It was unusual. I guess they just weren’t up to temperature when I hit the brakes that time. We’ve been very good with front-locking in this race. Normally it’s a big issue with the McLaren. In testing we had big issues with front locking. We did some set-up work and we’ve solved a lot of that, which is great for us.”

Comment of the day

There’s been a lot of discussion recently over Ferrari using Italian in their team radio messages. Bullfrog reckons it’s up to TV broadcasters to translate them instead of forcing Ferrari to use English:

Sky are asking people to pay a premium for their service ?ǣ the least they can do is find someone to translate the messages, instead of making lame jokes and sounding amazed that people speak in funny foreign languages…

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Matt!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Five years ago today a furious Scott Speed claimed his Toro Rosso team were trying to force him and Vitantonio Liuzzi out.

Sure enough, it soon turned out Speed had already started his last race: he was replaced by Sebastian Vettel at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Liuzzi was dropped at the end of the season to make way for Sebastien Bourdais.

Image ?? McLaren/Hoch Zwei

197 comments on “Vettel and Hamilton at odds over unlapping”

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  1. SennaNmbr1 (@)
    23rd July 2012, 7:07

    Times like this Vettel shows his true colours.

  2. As for the COTD, I agree that Sky should be able to afford hiring translators but I’m not sure if the same applies to the smaller TV companies all over the world, particularly because Italian is not the only ‘foreign’ language spoken by the F1 fraternity; for instance, Grosjean and Boullier might start communicating in French via team radio.

    I personally don’t think it’s a very important issue but we have talked a lot about team radio as F1’s wasted asset before and, in my opinion, there is little use of full access to it if the overwhelming majority of fans cannot understand the messages and their TV commentators are unable translate them, too. It’s a matter of fan-friendliness of F1.

    1. @girts I don’t know about costs of translation in other countries, but in Poland for instance it’s around 10 Euro per hour, as far as languages such as Italian, Spanish, Portuguese or French are concerned. For English and German it’s even cheaper. I really doubt a TV station which can afford to show F1 cannot afford translators for couple of hours every week or two.

      1. The other thing is, if you want to understand it, you have to learn fifty words at most in italian, if you cant make out anything of the message with those fifty words, they must be chatting about family.

        1. @bag0 I don’t think it’s that simple. The number of topics is, of course, quite limited but one can use quite many words to talk just about the state of the rear tyres, let alone all the other things related to the race (see IDR’s comment below). Besides, the sound quality is usually pretty bad when the driver is talking, I often don’t understand even the messages in English so I guess you need to understand the language very well.

          As for the costs of interpreters’ services, @cyclops_pl has a good point, I would also like to know how much each TV company pays for broadcasting F1 and how big or tiny the translation costs would be. Still, it’s unlikely that a lot of TV companies will hire a bunch of translators so that each of them can translate one or two sentences per race. This is just an example of how simple things can get overcomplicated.

    2. TV companies wouldnt have to. FOM could have it as part of the feed. the messages are delayed anyway and it could come up as subtitles on bottom of screen

      1. If FOM could ensure that, it would be a really good solution.

      2. Subtitles are a great idea, actually.

        Now that I think about it, surely someone at FOM must be vetting these messages as acceptable for broadcast (e.g., not containing any swearing) therefore they must know what they mean and are in a position to provide a translation. So why don’t they?

        1. The various TV companies don’t want to pay Bernie’s premium for that service?

  3. I think Fernando will claim his due WDC#3 this year. Red Bulls still can stop him but McLarens will need a ceratin amount of competence and luck combined to get to the top, unless Jenson or Lewis manages 5 or 6 wins and other podium finishes they will not reach the title.

    1. @jcost
      Although I agree with you, there is still a posibility, that one team could emerge with a new spicy upgrade, which can turn the tide. And lets not forget about Ferraris reliability, they have not had any mechanical failure yet, but RedBull, McLaren, Lotus and Mercedes had multiple times. Statistically Alonso should have at least one DNF, which could be very useful to everyone else. The big questions are, when will he have it, how many times, and who’s going to make up ground.

  4. “making lame jokes and sounding amazed that people speak in funny foreign languages…”? This is not the COTD, this is the stupidity (of sky guys) of the century.

  5. Dear Red Bull Racing members, both drivers and staff alike, please shut your mouths for a while and stop making an impression you’re just a bunch of sore losers who, when not winning even though you broke the rules on two separate fronts, just yap around about how everyone else is to blame. After the engine mapping controversy this was just stupid, mostly on FIA’s side, now it’s getting disgusting and sad.

  6. Ferrari Team Radio:

    ALONSO: “Lo so che non è facile, ma cercate di stare tranquilli. Qui è tutto a posto.” – “I know it’s not easy but try to be calm. Everything it’s ok here”

    Lap 61. Button was 1 sec behind him.

    1. disgruntled
      24th July 2012, 12:11

      I swear it sounded like they were discussing pizza toppings

  7. This is what Renault said about the engine mapping controversy:

    “Formula 1 is a tight environment and we have to try to find every hundredth (of a second) that we can,” said Cyril Dumont, Renault’s principal track support engineer to Red Bull. “We’re not racing lawn-mowers and we were pleased to show that our package was very strong.”

    and they are right off course, its their goal to find every possible and not illegal way to get an advantage, and good job on them.
    Off course they will now have to soon look for something new, but that’s the fun of it in F1!

    1. @BasCB Agreed, F1 is all about trying to find where the limit is and RBR / Renault have done exactly that here. Loopholes in the technical rules, however, should normally be closed as soon as they are detected.

    2. @bascb

      Off course they will now have to soon look for something new

      I’m not sure, as no clarification has been made yet. I’m just wondering if their mapping has an aero benefit via the exhaust, or mechanical benefit like a traction control. And the other thing I’m curious about, is it possible, that the same thing was Mclarens electrical gimmick which Button is refferred to a few weaks earlier?

      1. Its an aero benefit. The fuel is used to be blowing the exhausts over critical parts during mid throttle range, ie. medium fast corners.
        Today is a technical working group meeting, I am convinced they will talk this issue trough and the FIA will send a clarification out before the Hungarian GP weekend @bag0

  8. And a happy birthday to Matt!

  9. I agree with Sebastian Vettel.
    Due to Hamilton unlapping himself, it caused Vettel to lose a fair amount of aero, it also increased the gap to Alonso, and Button closed up. Furthermore, it got vettel fairly irritated and angry, which meant he was overdriving due to frustration.
    Had that not happened, Vettel would have finished at least 2nd, as befiore, he was hounding Alonso for P1.
    I also agree that it was a stupid thing for Hamilton to do; had he collided with Vettel, then there would be blood to pay.

    1. You must be a prophet of some kind, how could you tell if Button was not going to pass him on track? Before the unlapping Button was catching Vettel tenth by tenth, and trailing him by 2-2.5 seconds, his pitstop was ~1.5 sec faster, and you say he would not get him in the DRS zone? I must have forgot the RedBulls extreme top speed.

    2. Furthermore, it got vettel fairly irritated and angry, which meant he was overdriving due to frustration.

      Poor Vettel. Bad Hamilton!

      I also agree that it was a stupid thing for Hamilton to do; had he collided with Vettel, then there would be blood to pay.

      Yeah, there would have been an investigation, and if it was Hamiltons fault then there would indeed have been hell to pay. But it wasn’t his fault. No, wait, it didnt even happen!

  10. “Yes and no. Yes and no. He [Hamilton] didn’t attempt to make any move on Fernando. He was a lap down and this was for the lead of the race. Sebastian gets pushed off line, gets dirt on his tyres and it costs him time in a crucial battle with Fernando Alonso.”

    First of all, Christian, Hamilton was faster than Vettel, but only as fast as Alonso. And secondly, Ferrari pitted Alonso before Hamilton could make a move on him, though whether this was because they realised what McLaren were doing or if they were simply following this strategy remains to be seen.

    1. he had a few goes at him and at one point fernando went defensive.

      this wasnt shown on the BBC highlights i noticed.

  11. Vettel never called Hamilton stupid, he said that his decision to unlap himself was. There’s a difference. Guess it shows Hamilton’s maturity if he didnt check the facts before responding, and the blatant biased approach of the British media that they immediately, as always, painted the non-Brit in the bad light. Vettel had a right to be upset, he was very close to Alonso at that point and did lose time to Hamilton, potentially losing the race there, and Hamilton has said a hell of a lot worse.

  12. I think that Vettel is right. I wouldn’t have used the word “stupid” because the journalists usually go mad when there is a strong word like this, but he has a point.

    At that stage Hamilton was faster than the leaders, but not that much. I remember that in China 2011 some lapped drivers passed Vettel in the closing stages of the race. But they did so in the middle of the straight, without affecting his race.

    Look at Hamilton’s move on Vettel: it was a proper overtaking manoeuvre. He opened the DRS, he went on the inside and forced the braking. On top of that, Vettel was not aware of that until he saw Lewis alongside him.

    That’s a little bit too risky. And unnecessary. I mean, Hamilton had really nothing to gain from that pass, so why do that? A couple of laps later there was Alonso using a defensive line. And that shows that losing the place to Hamilton was a loss of time and a risk.

    I know it’s not in the rules, but if you are a lapped driver and behind the leaders, common sense says that you should try not to affect their race. Besides, Seb and Fernando were fighting and that move prevented Vettel from fighting with Alonso in the last laps of the stint.

    1. Hamilton had really nothing to gain from that pass, so why do that

      He started going faster when Button was about to lap him, so he went faster to avoid getting in his way and help him.

    2. You must be joking saying that Hamilton had nothing to gain. I really don’t understand this attitude and mentality of some. He is a races for god’s sake. He, and all drivers, push as much as they can. By that logic why would HRT bother to race.

    3. “I know it’s not in the rules, but if you are a lapped driver and behind the leaders, common sense says that you should try not to affect their race.”

      If it’s not in the rules, why did Red Bull have a problem with it ?
      After all, they are sticklers for following the letter of the rules.

      Sebastian Vettel might consider that it was the application of the letter of the rules, against the spirit of the rules, which allowed him to start at the front of the grid rather than the back (though I would argue that Hamilton had both the letter and spirit of the rules on his side in this case).

  13. Horner and Vettel are talking rubbish, yes they had a tough time but they should take it on the chin. It was quite funny when Horner was talking to Sky, and whenever he tried to justify what he said, the Sky presenters were telling him how wrong he was and then Horner ended up saying some silly things.

    In regards to COTD:

    To be fair, Alonso and race engineer only occasionally spoke Italian over the team radio before this year so Sky wouldn’t have known they’d need a translator. Sometimes Ted Kravitz finds out what Alonso and his race engineer says by asking Italian journalists.

  14. This very much smacks of Horner and Vettel throwing a sulk over the fact that they got a penalty, and trying to put some kind of blame – any kind, in fact onto McLaren. Rather pathetic, to be honest, considering Hamilton was completely in his rights to unlap and Vettel blatantly cheated to pass Button.

  15. Partly agree with COTD – I’ll take it one further and say that if we’re that desperate to catch every word of Ferrari’s radio messages we can easily pick rudimentary Italian from any online phrase book. I’m pretty sure they’re not exactly quoting Dante. It shouldn’t take more than a couple dozen words to get the gist.

    1. Yes, at the time I thought “what was that…three, something about laps…ah, who cares?” If I could have replayed it a few times I might’ve got it. More disappointed with the commentators being dismissive about it – after all, they drop everything to listen to all the radio messages, even the meaningless ones.

  16. Carlito's way
    23rd July 2012, 11:00

    Everyone is missing the point here. We shoul be discussing why Bernie didn’t show up this weekend. Feeling the heat for sure, and rightly so. If the banker has been jailed for receiving bribes Bernie can’t expect to go scotch free.

    1. He’s certainly never shied from being a “distraction” before…

  17. I guess if there is one thing we can conclude from this week, is that Hamilton is unlikely to be at Red Bull in 2014 given the strong words used by Horner this weekend! Way to shoot yourself in the foot, Lewis ;)

    1. If Lewis did want to go to Red Bull I’d be willing to bet the only person who may have an issue with that would be Vettel – at the risk of being shown up in his own team.
      Horner would have to go for the quickest driver available in the case of replacing Vettel and you could argue that Hamilton is the only one who could be available in 2014 to fill that gap.
      Neither would have a choice if Mateschitz decided it fitted his marketing strategy, I would love to see Vettel Alonso and Lewis racing in the same car just to see who came out on top

    2. I would say that passing a driver to unlap ones self and then pull away, while that man helplessly waves his hands like a child, is a rather good audition to replace said driver.

      Vettel by the way was a real mess on Sunday. I saw him go off track in two corners in a row at one point. It was like me on F12010 or something.

  18. I disagree with the comment of the day, and I feel it is another pointless, pathetic dig at Sky for the sake for taking a dig at Sky. Surely you should be complaining about the BBC too, as you pay a license fee to watch TV (and only because of the BBC), so they should be providing you with a translator?

    I dont really care to be honest, they’re not speaking in a previous unheard language, and the commentators generally do manage to get a translator to tell them what had been said eventually anyway. If anything, Ted Kravitz generally figures out what has been said just by looking at strategy of all drivers, pits stops and their lap times. That’s impressive reporting/sloothing.

    Stop with the sour grapes against Sky. It’s a little pathetic. You should be angry at the BBC if anything, for dropping F1 in the way it did.

    1. I chose the comment because it was on the subject of the radio messages, which a lot of people had been talking about, particularly in the live comments.

      Sky was the only UK broadcaster showing the race live so it’s hardly surprising they were referred to but you could just as easily make the same criticism of other broadcasters.

      the commentators generally do manage to get a translator to tell them what had been said eventually anyway.

      Did this happen at all during yesterday’s race? I can’t think of any examples (though I haven’t rewatched it yet).

      1. Ted did talk to an Italian colleague (at RTL I think?) at Silverstone (and possibly Valencia…?) to find out what was going on. He didnt say during pit lane commentary that he did that yesterday, but his information was spot on. So either by his own working or by communicating with those fluent in Italian, the viewer got the information.

        1. @jamesf1

          the viewer got the information

          If most people thought that was the case I doubt I’d be seeing so many complaints, which is why I chose the comment to begin with. As I say I don’t recall any translations coming forward during yesterday’s race.

          1. I’ve no issue with the comment with regards to translation, just the petty digs towards Sky which are still persistant. The BBC ran out of money and had to ditch/cut back. Sky came forward and presented the UK with an opportunity to continue watching F1 for the full season.

    2. Stop with the sour grapes against the BBC. And don’t tell me what to think – that’s pathetic.

      1. I’ve nothing against the BBC. Their commentary and pitlane crew are pretty good. But the Sky-bashing is a bit old now.

  19. i found the whole unlapping thing with Hamilton hilarious! seeing him unlap vettel much to vettel’s dislike.

  20. Is there a high quality video of Jenson Button’s final stop (which was 2.31 seconds)? If so can a link be put on here and then get BBC / Sky to analyse it during the Hungarian GP build up? :-)

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