Alonso and Hamilton ‘would have done the same as Vettel’ – Horner

2013 Malaysian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Sepang, 2013Christian Horner says Sebastian Vettel’s defiance of team orders during the Malaysian Grand Prix showed he has the competitive instincts of the F1 elite.

“He’s a very, very driven individual,” said Horner in an interview with Sky. “You don’t win the amount of events he’s won, the amount of grands prix he’s won, the amount of success he’s had in his career by being a driver that is submissive, that sits back.”

“If Fernando Alonso or Lewis Hamilton had been in that position they’d have done the same, if Mark Webber had been in that position we’ve seen him do the same. So let’s not kid ourselves that this is something unique to Sebastian, this is something that’s in any competitive, driven driver’s DNA.”

Horner admitted there had been previous occasions where he’d attempted to impose team orders on his drivers without success: “I think any race driver, any seriously competitive race driver, teams orders go against what they compete for.”

“We saw it with Mark in 2011 at Silverstone, we saw it on previous occasions with the team, the final in race in Brazil last year, only two races ago.

“It’s a tricky one because obviously the interest of the driver is different from the interests of the team. Team orders are permitted, they exist in Formula One. The constructors’ championship for the team has equal or more importance than the drivers’ championship. The constructors’ championships is where the funds are distributed.

“So of course there are different objectives going on within a Grand Prix: that of the driver and that of the teams.”

Red Bull ‘takes equality seriously’

However Horner added he believes Vettel genuinely regrets his actions: “Sebastian’s a very honest guy. I think he was shocked after the race I think he was surprised and then the feeling came over him, you could see that, that he felt he had done wrong.”

“I believe his apology was sincere and he repeated that apology in private in the briefing that we had later that evening.”

The Red Bull team principal insisted both his drivers will continue to be treated the same: “[Webber] will have equal opportunity to Sebastian as we’ve done our very best to do for both drivers at every Grand Prix that we compete at.”

“Mark knows the equipment that we make and the lengths we go to ensure parity. We even, from weekend to weekend, switch who going to go first in qualifying, who talks first in the debrief, it’s switched from weekend to weekend to ensure there is completely parity in the way we treat our drivers.

“It’s something we take very seriously within the team and I think Mark knows the support that he has.”

“I think we’re going to give up on that code”

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Sepang, 2013Horner also gave further insight into the events during the final laps of Sunday’s Malaysian Grand Prix, pointing out that Webber had to run his engine on a lower setting because he had used more fuel:

“Mark and Seb were on opposing strategies they were running different tyres at different points in time. After that final stop of course fuel consumption between the two cars had been slightly different, Mark’s had been slightly higher than Sebastian’s so he was in a slightly more fuel saving mode than Sebastian.”

After the race Webber was heard pointing out to Vettel they had been given the instruction “multi 21” during the race. “Multi 21 means car two ahead of car one,” Horner explained.

“Multi 12 means car one ahead of car two. It’s not complicated. It’s not that difficult to translate but both our drivers in the last three races have failed to understand both of those messages.”

“I think we’re going to give up on that code,” he added. “We need to probably try something else.”

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238 comments on “Alonso and Hamilton ‘would have done the same as Vettel’ – Horner”

  1. Strangely no mention of Jenson doing the same thing, even though he has already done so, unlike Lewis and Alonso who have not.

    1. @nico21 Out of that group of drivers Button is the only one so far who’s come close to saying he wouldn’t have done the same.

      1. Then he should be asked why he did do the same at Turkey 2010. The only one we know for sure who wouldn’t do the same is Nico Rosberg!

        1. Lewis also obeyed team orders in Monaco 2007, when he had the opportunity to beat Alonso?

          1. @N

            If I remember correctly he was very bitter about being told to hold station…and … I dont think Hamilton dint give it a try… he just was not able to pull it off that day.. afterall we are talking about Monaco and two great drivers in equal cars…

          1. Agreed, but he was told to fuel save wasn’t he but thought he would give it a go anyway? Fuel critical ?

          2. Who says anything remotely suggesting Vettel knew Mark was saving fuel? Give me one source. Otherwise, case closed you got no idea what you’re talking about.

            Even so, thinking of the Mercedes case. The race was 56 laps. You used too much fuel so you have to save last laps? Too bad.

        2. @nico21: Vettel is really an honest guy. He doesn’t have an attitude problem like so many other drivers. Off track he is rather down to earth. Just like Nico Rosberg. You being a fan of Handsome Nico should know that.

          1. @Aish Not sure of the point you’re making? Not a big fan of Nico, though I assume you are going by my user name, did it never occur to you my name is Nico? which it is, short for Nicolette. I am a Lewis fan. I mentioned Nico Rosberg as he obeyed team orders on the same day ,as why we know he wouldn’t do what Vettel did.

          2. @nico21: Oh sorry, I like both Lewis and Nico. I guess you may also like Hulkenberg. Lol. Just kidding. Nicolette Nicholson, I get it.

          3. I think he was shocked after the race I think he was surprised and then the feeling came over him, you could see that, that he felt he had done wrong

            Waving his RB9 crossing the line, the finger and his world-size smile didn’t help his cause, did it?

            I can’t say whether Lewis was acting or not but his mood is worth a thousand words. I’d say I believe Hamilton was honest but I just can’t say the same about Seb. My late grand father was used to say: “people are what they do, not what they say”.

          4. @jcost

            I don’t think Vettel knew the team was as upset as they where when he crossed the finish line.

          5. @aish People are increasingly feeling like Vettel is all poker face. He always starts with “obviously” and ends with “that’s racing” and a laugh. I just think that he should have won the race from pole, then started a tantrum and just had to win, honestly maybe if Webber had a chance of retrieving all the lost 1st place starts he would have done the same, but actually he hasn’t, at least not successfully.

        3. … and Felipe Massa!

          1. @jcost

            I can’t say whether Lewis was acting or not but his mood is worth a thousand words. I’d say I believe Hamilton was honest but I just can’t say the same about Seb. My late grand father was used to say: “people are what they do, not what they say”.

            I agree with what your grand father says, however, from my point of view, if HAM was truly sorry, his actions speak loudly too. When Nico passed him before the start finish straight, if HAM truly felt awful for holding him up, why did he retake him and perhaps see if he could scamper off down the road to tackle the RBR’s?

  2. That’s one serious case of schizofrenia here. Dear Christian, you can’t codemn Vettel’s actions and defend them at the same time. You simply can’t.

    1. He just showed that he can @cyclops_Pl, but you are completely right, that it makes what he say as irrelevant as his instructions to his own drivers!

    2. Right on! I agree with Flavio Briatore that Horner’s actions reflect weakness.

      However, they might be walking some of their recent comments so that Seb isn’t completely isolated which might lead to the lad having a meltdown.

    3. Traverse (@)
      29th March 2013, 11:35

      My gut tells me that Horner appreciates what Vettel did, but can’t admit it due to the hysteria kicked up by certain fans. We all know that given half a chance Ham, Alonso and (two-faced) Webber would’ve done the same thing.

      1. Traverse (@)
        29th March 2013, 11:39

        He’s two-faced because he attempted (and failed!) the same manoeuvre at Silverstone 2 years ago.

        1. Webber pretended to have a go at him but he couldn’t go agaist team orders or will be shown the door. He only pretended so to please his fans. Webber is a MAN unlike Vettle the snake.

        2. Just like vettel did in turkey 2010

          In case you forgot webber told to turn engine down and vettel told to push

          So people using Britain 2011 as a precedent only need to look at the outcome of turkey 2010

          At least webber was smart enough to not take both of them our whilst still showing he had the pace to pass him in silverstone

          As other users said if he did pass he wouldn’t have been in RBR now

          Imagine Marko’s face

      2. I seriously doubt it. He’s made Horner look very silly.

    4. (@cyclops_pl) Not so much condemn and praise – if you notice the PR coming from RB, at first it was ‘Vettel is completely wrong, he disobeyed orders’ to ‘well, if you look at previous experiences at Brazil/Silverstone, who could blame Vettel? It was retaliation against Webber’.

      Realising their golden boy’s stocks were plummeting, and that Mark may potentially retire/move team at the end of the year, the locus of blame is gradually shifting to Webber again. It’s an extremely coy muddying of the PR waters.

    5. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      29th March 2013, 13:55

      +1 Guess what everyone? Webber was right! Vettel has protection. Now when do you predict the Webber’s KERS will fail again or do you believe it will ever work again? God, they make Vettel’s Red Bull so well but Webber’s car must be made in India by Tata to save costs…

      1. (@freelittlebirds) I’m glad I’m not the only one who noticed that Webber’s KERS unit appears to have been installed when the RB crew were drunk or something considering the mysterious amount of failures he suffers.

        (@hellotraverse)(@vettel1)
        Have you honestly not noticed the shift from portioning blame on Vettel in the immediate aftermath, to shifting it back to Webber’s fault somehow? I also can’t help but feel Hamilton and Alonso would also follow team orders if instructed.

        And I think people perhaps defend Webber’s actions in Silverstone due to the fact he’s already in a team that treats him appallingly – maybe the viewing public are beginning to tire of the PR stance that Webber is treated equally, when all evidence points on the contrary.

        1. @sgt-pepper

          Have you honestly not noticed the shift from portioning blame on Vettel in the immediate aftermath, to shifting it back to Webber’s fault somehow?

          Where exactly has he put any blame on Webber here?

          1. (@vettel1)

            Horner admitted there had been previous occasions where he’d attempted to impose team orders on his drivers without success: “I think any race driver, any seriously competitive race driver, teams orders go against what they compete for.”

            “We saw it with Mark in 2011 at Silverstone, we saw it on previous occasions with the team, the final in race in Brazil last year, only two races ago.

    6. +1 Mr. Horner you are a hypocrite

      1. Traverse (@)
        29th March 2013, 14:03

        +1 Mr. Webber you are a hypocrite

    7. If Fernando Alonso or Lewis Hamilton had been in that position they’d have done the same, if Mark Webber had been in that position we’ve seen him do the same. So let’s not kid ourselves that this is something unique to Sebastian, this is something that’s in any competitive, driven driver’s DNA.”

      I wouldn’t call that defending, I would call that silencing critics who are using this incident to claim moral superiority for Webber. He made it very clear he wasn’t happy with Vettel’s actions as a team boss and has mentioned in this article the apologies Vettel made, so really I think it’s just an “all is well, the issue has been resolved” statement.

      1. @Vettel1

        In an “All is a well Issue resolved ” statement why does he feel the need to mention drivers of other teams? I find it more like defending Vettel … he says he is not happy with Vettel’s actions and then defends vettel saying Alonso and Hamilton would have done the same..

        In any case

        1. @puneethvb – not defending his actions though, defending the unnecessary volumes of misinformed criticism he has been receiving.

    8. Don’t miss the point. The comment is just horner telling webber who is red bull’s number one driver.

  3. There you go, multi 21 explained, Mark’s situation explained, Vettel driving explained. So can we give it a rest now?

    1. hear hear, It’s about time to stop this nonsense. There were other things that featured during the race. Time to discuss those.

    2. Not really much explanation really though @funkyf1, apart from possibly why Mark didn’t fight until flag but hung back after overtake. But doesn’t realistically seem that much to add, as we won’t be privy to their private thoughts and conversations, I agree.

      It does illustrate that Webber was at least right Vettel would be ‘protected’, and Horner not quite truthful abt. Not getting that remark. So nothing new really. Vettel is their main driver, and has accolades to show why.

    3. “So can we give it a rest now?”

      With 2 weeks still to the next race, you’re joking arn’t you? ;]

      1. Wishful thinking is my guess N. @bosyber I’m just over it. With this whole situation there isn’t a wrong or a right. Mark thinks he was wrong done by and so do the Webber supporters, as this was and maybe will be the only time Horner backed Webber. Seb said he didn’t mean it and as a person he probably didn’t, didn’t want to do that to Mark, but as a racer, he will risk everything he can for the win. Horner, well he is just in a world of hurt. What he stated/wanted/commanded was disregarded so what’s the point of him being there. In the end, it would be crazy to punish a driver in the team you run, it only affects your own performance, so it’s not gonna happen, either driver could run over Horners cat or smash his car and they’d still be driving next round….

        So after blabbing on about it again (sucked in) there will be no change, because nothing can be changed, multi or no multi

    4. So that’s what that code means? I figured Webber was refering to how many times Vettel had kicked his derrier in a row…. next race he would be mumbling Multi-22….. huahuahuahua

  4. I think Jackie Stewart’s comment was more interesting: “Webber could move to Ferrari, but he would have the same problems with Alonso as he has with Vettel”.

    1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
      29th March 2013, 10:50

      It might even be worse at Ferrari.

      Fernando might be good friends with Mark, but Fernando hates a ‘punchy’ teammate, preferring a submissive dog instead.

      1. …and why do you think that Webber will be more competitive than Massa in Ferrari ??

        1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
          29th March 2013, 11:09

          Please, point out where I stated that Webber would be more competitive.

          Webber is certainly more outspoken and less accepting of team orders than Massa, but I never said he’d be more competitive.

        2. but Fernando hates a ‘punchy’ teammate, preferring a submissive dog instead.

          What makes you think that Webber is a ‘punchy’ teammate for Alonso??

          He may be a submissive dog for Alonso just like Massa…

          1. @nomore
            If you compare MW’s speech on the poduim of Malyasian GP “…Seb will be have protection like he always does” vs Massa’s quite acceptance in the interviews after Germany 2010, you will see an example of how Mark Webber will speak his mind and be “punchy” will Massa will keep quiet.

            Im not condoning or condemning any actions of either driver, simply providing an example of the events that have contributed to the reputation that each drivers has to the public.

          2. @nomore

            Alonso’s and WEbber’s friendship will be over if Webber decides to drive for Ferrari. And no sir Webber won’t be a submissive dog whatsoever. He has been a front runner for far too long now. Alonso of course would still be the faster guy and on the days when Webber is faster, Alonso would still be there or thereabouts. Which could lead to team orders and Webber of course not obeying.

  5. Wow Horner?….
    This seems like a statement advised to you by some PR Consultant.
    Attack the two best drivers on the grid…. and this will shift the negative attention from Seb.

    1. David not Coulthard (@)
      29th March 2013, 10:41

      EThis seems like a statement advised to you by some PR Consultant.

      Either that or Keith simply opted for that title.

    2. Yep, you should read/watch the whole interview before judging his intention. He said Webber would have done the same too. The quote in the title was never the point of the interview.

    3. Well said!

      Actually I think this is a PR dream for red bull

      Pretend like you actually backed webber for a change but happy that vettel actually took maximum points and then the fans who don’t like team orders and are hailing vettel like senna or Schumacher who would have done the same thing

  6. It’s obvious now – Red Bull is Vettel’s team.

    1. It was obvious since Turkey 2010

    2. RB wanted Webber to win the race! Don´t forget that…

      1. Yeah it was obvious from the way they pitted Vettel first

      2. Yet I’m sure they’re more than happy with the outcome as it takes the attention away from their stupid antics and puts it back on a triple world champion who doesn’t really need to justify anything

  7. I do Respect Christian Horner as a Team Principle but he is wrapped up in so much hypocrisy I struggle to like him as a person. He speaks words in the same vain as Flavio Briatore and that can never be a good sign.

    1. @giggsy11

      Funny that Webber co-owns a team with Horner and that Briatore is Webber’s manager. I wonder what that might be a sign of?

  8. So he accepts the fact that any competetive driver would have done exactly the same things as Vettel in that situation, but he still uses the team order? Why is that?
    The only result of applying a team order then, is to either make the drivers upset, look like a fool, or like what happened here BOTH. Its a loose, loose. So why not just stop it all ready and accept that racing drivers are racing drivers?
    They have had that problem before so they ḱnow how their drivers behave in those situations. They should either accept that or fire both and replace them with Rosberg and Massa.

    1. I’ve been asking that same questions myself.
      Horner must’ve seen this thing coming and yet he still did it anyway. He’s pretty much lost any credibility he has as a team principal because of this.
      I get that he doesn’t want Turkey 2010 to happen all over again but there’s got to be a better way of telling your drivers to be careful with each other.

  9. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
    29th March 2013, 10:41

    We all know Vettel own’s the team and that they would.nt be where they are without mr Newey.

    So, they should (as someone has already suggested) change their name to Vettel – Newey Racing.

    1. David not Coulthard (@)
      29th March 2013, 10:54

      I disagree with that, but as a small joke you can call it SVN Racing. Sebastian Vettel-Newey Subversion Racing.

      1. Traverse (@)
        29th March 2013, 11:44

        Or R.B.R (Real Bavarian Racing).

      2. Not many people would get that, but I wanted you to know I did.

  10. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    29th March 2013, 10:42

    And so begins the smoothing over.

    Turns out Vettel really can get away with defying the team.

    1. Just as Webber can. More than once.

      1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
        29th March 2013, 11:18

        Never said he couldn’t.

        While I’m on the subject though, people keep using Silverstone 2011 as an example when Webber defied team orders, and yes he did defy them to an extent, but he never overtook Vettel.
        The difference here being that Vettel did overtake Webber.

        I can imagine the uproar from a certain Austrian if Webber had infact passed Vettel. But he didn’t, so all was well.

        1. Silverstone 2011 is a very good example. That’s why people use it.

          The reason Webber never overtook Vettel then was because he couldn’t. He admitted to that himself. Vettel was however able to get past Webber in Malaysia.

          They both broke team orders. The only difference was that one was able to pass while the other wasn’t.

        2. Traverse (@)
          29th March 2013, 11:42

          So what your saying is Vettel is worse because he actually succeeded where Webber failed?

          1. Chris (@tophercheese21)
            29th March 2013, 12:06

            No, I’m just saying that comparing 2011 Silverstone to 2013 Sepang is not quite right, because Webber didn’t pass Vettel.

            Yes team orders were played out on the television coverage, which made it a talking point, but nothing happened in reality. The positions didn’t change.

            Where as in Sepang, the engineers and Horner were quite clearly telling Vettel not to overtake, and he still did it anyway.

          2. So vettel succeeded passing webber in turkey 2010 then

          3. @Drezone – It’s no surprise that you’ve come up with an irrelevant example.

        3. Mark tried to overtake by Ignoring the orders and failed how does that means he was Obeying the Orders.
          This is what Two-Faced Personality as some one said.

          1. Let me get this right

            Webber is two faced and vettel is an angel

            I’m sure most of the media that speak to both drivers and fellow drivers would disagree

  11. They need to stop and let it go. Whether they would or wouldn’t it sound childish.

  12. Well, may be Horner.

  13. If that’s the case why do they ever bother with team instructions, if it had of been race on, Webber would not have tuned down his engine and could have continued on to win. Don’t expect him to do it again cos it really is game on now. Team Webber vs everyone else

  14. Well, I have to disagree with you, Horner.

    If Fernando Alonso or Lewis Hamilton had been in that position

    I think that’s only in case they are in RBR, not Ferrari, Mclaren, Mercedes. Red Bull is the only team does nothing to control them when both drivers bite each other. I might say Vettel is something unique in terms of team order however. that’s not Vettel himself being but because his situation and growing background, what he experienced from team management etc…

    You only can blame yourself Horner. You should have blamed Vettel when he crashed into Webber. You should have say strong words when Webber disobeyed. May be it’s too late now perhaps.

  15. I’m not surprised this has caused so much of a fuss, but I am disappointed it has.

    What would Ayrton Senna have done in Vettel’s position? If he had the chance to win a race, my personal opinion is that he would have gone out and won it. If anything I’ve got more respect for Vettel after Malaysia, not less.

    The team put the drivers in the position to win races by working incredibly hard to deliver the hardware needed to do that. They then give all of that responsibility to a group of people in their 20’s-30’s that have spent years honing their skills to try and get into the position of winning races in the highest echelon of motorsport. Then you expect someone to hold position, just because they were behind at the last pit stop? That’s not what I watch F1 for. I’m not naive enough to think that this hasn’t happened for years, obviously it has, but for me last weekend was a positive for honest, hard racing. I sincerely hope that Hamilton and Alonso would have done the same.

    1. +1 well put

    2. Traverse (@)
      29th March 2013, 12:17

      Hopefully this is a watershed moment that results in every driver on the grid disobeying team orders. Maybe then we’ll see some REAL RACING.

      1. My comment has gone. Oh well.

        I’d just like to point out that this was not real racing, because one driver assumed there would be no overtaking after the final pitstop. This is what the multi-21 code was.

        You could say that Webber was naive to think that Vettel would stand by what he agreed before the race – but he won’t make the same mistake again.

        I presume in a driver’s briefing before the race, this situation was discussed and this is why Vettel now feels the need to apologise because he has basically gone back on an agreement made pre-race with his team-mate.

        This is a question of respect and honouring an agreement. I gather from the recent comments that winning is everything. I beg to differ.

        1. this was not real racing

          I wish there was some way to determine what proportion of readers actually watch the races. Perhaps a post race quiz. Because that was the only real racing of the entire GP. The pair of them almost collided as Mark exited the pit stop and then it was two laps of wheel-to-wheel white-knuckle racing. Ever after Seb passed him Mark did not give up. Not that I think he should have, but his actions were wildly at odds with the picture some people have in their minds of what happened.

          1. Traverse (@)
            29th March 2013, 15:05

            +1

          2. I don’t mean that bit. Jeez. I mean leading up to it. I’ve finished with this debate. Meh.

          3. Webber had his engine turned down. Vettel did not. *NOT* real racing. Simple.

            The question is, and I don’t know if anyone knows the answer but RBR, but did Webber turn his engine back up to fight off Vettel at any point?

          4. @f1americana

            Horner explains the engines turned down thing – Webber needed to conserve fuel as he had used more earlier in the race (which is why he was able to stay ahead of Vettel). This is also the same situation Hamilton found himself in at the end of the race – he had used to much fuel.

            In a sense Webber and Hamilton were the ones not really racing at that point. They couldn’t. Nico and Seb could actually still race and if it wasn’t their teammates in front of them, would have been able to attack.

            Hamilton’s podium is empty of being earned. It was given. Webber’s victory was to be given and not earned as well. If it was Nico behind Webber, Nico would have passed Webber and no one would be saying “well it wasn’t a real pass because Webber had to conserve fuel.”

        2. 100% agree with what your saying. No matter how exciting it may have been for fans, if it was not a fair fight (only one driver *knows* he’s racing, and is the only driver who has his engine at race mapping), then it wasn’t “real racing”. Exciting to watch? Sure. Real racing? No way.

    3. @bleebs_and_tweaks So well put. I think Horner is maybe coming around to accept that when his drivers are on the track he can’t control them – only give them advice. If he has a problems with nervousness, when they race each other, then he should consult a professional to help him with that, while the rest of us watches some good and fair racing.

    4. I have always been a Webber supporter and still think he is the better of the two drivers, all those KERS issues happening only in his car make me a suspicious little fanboy, so naturally I was holding my breath for him to win and was absolutely heartbroken when I realized I would once more have to see that ghastly fingerpointing in post-race pictures.

      But after letting it set in for a week and seeing Vettel have to apologize for being the fastest man of the race and having the audacity to overtake a slower car and take the lead with 10+ laps to go. I have to ask myself and my fellow fanatics:

      What have we been smoking!?
      Please do yourself a favor and re-live the “glorious” moments of the Austria 2002 GP?
      Team orders were momentarily banned thanks to that historical event. Anyone here who thinks Red Bull were correct to issue a team order in just the second race of the season is probably a Webber fan first and racing fan second.

      Team orders have their time and place, unfortunately, but I sure don’t want to see the drivers being pounded into submission, and by the fans no-less, to the benefit of corporate interest! These guys do indeed train for their entire lives to be the best. They grow up with the dream of an F1 seat and a “eat or be eaten”-attitude. To think that those instincts could be overcome by something agreed on in a pre-race meeting is appalling to me.

      I don’t want that to happen, not while the drivers have a shot at the title.

      Vettel did us all a favor. Thanks to him and his disgusting overtake(he did push Webber waaaayy too hard) the podium was not decided by The Council of Team Principals.

      1. Thats a super comment…

      2. “Vettel did us all a favor. Thanks to him and his disgusting overtake(he did push Webber waaaayy too hard) the podium was not decided by The Council of Team Principals.”

        The reason theres been such uproar is because the public became aware of the situation that both Vettel and Webber agreed on something, only for Vettel to stab him in the back. This is not a case of neither driver being aware of such a rule and then the team getting on the radio mid-late race and telling Vettel that he couldnt race to the finish, then him getting emotional and taking it into his own hands. (Which would have been atleast understandable, as it would have been if Rosberg took Hamilton)

        What Vettel did was calculated and cold, he dishonored his agreement, and people didnt like seeing that. Is anyone of the opinion that Vettel would have got the win had this agreement not been in place? Pretty sure most people think Webber had that win the bag on pace, and thats why theres a problem.

        I dont think this situation is anything like Austria 2002 in principle.

        1. Is anyone of the opinion that Vettel would have got the win had this agreement not been in place? Pretty sure most people think Webber had that win the bag on pace, and thats why theres a problem.

          Neither driver gave any signs of thinking about that “agreement” during the race. People have an impressive capacity for self-deception, so I can’t rule out the possibility that some people really DO think that Webber “had the race n the bag” but for Vettels “stab in the back”.

          But such a belief is not supported by any facts. Vettels fastest lap time of the race coincided with Mark Webbers fastest lap time of the race – lap 45, when both drivers were racing each other for the lead. If Webber has actually been taken unaware by a “stab in the back”, he’d have been sitting in his car, eyes wide with astonishment and shock, as Vettel sailed past him. He was under no illusions that the race was over.

          You can see the lap time data here for the two drivers – deselect everyone else – and it refutes the notion that Webber had the race n the bag. It also refutes the notion that Webber “had his engine in fuel saving mode”.

          http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2013/03/24/2013-malaysian-grand-prix-lap-times-fastest-laps/

          1. You and your fancy “numbers” and “facts.”

          2. “Neither driver gave any signs of thinking about that “agreement” during the race.”

            Why would they? The ‘agreement’ was that they would be free to race up until the last round of stops, then whatever position they are in, they would remain in. Webber had Vettel beat upto that point.

            And the problem with only looking at laptimes on a sheet is that it dosnt take into account track position. Webber had a good gap to Vettel leading into the last stint, a gap that he was managing throughout all the race.

            Even if its the case that Vettel closed that gap up _before_ Webbers last stop (knowing the ‘race’ would be called off once Webbers last stop was made) Webber _still maintained_ his lead position throughout his out-lap, it was only until the following lap that Vettel actually managed to gain the position. (hence the ‘this is getting silly seb comment)

          3. Why would they? The ‘agreement’ was that they would be free to race up until the last round of stops

            When Webber left the pits for the last time they were neck and neck. So, who had who beat?

          4. “When Webber left the pits for the last time they were neck and neck. So, who had who beat?”

            Webber had the lead going into the last stops, Webber held the lead after his outlap. Is that not obvious enough for you who had who beat in terms of their ‘agreement’ ?

          5. “Vettel’s fastest lap time of the race coincided with Mark Webber’s fastest lap time of the race – lap 45, when both drivers were racing each other for the lead.”

            Of course they set their best times. They had both just pitted for fresh tyres and and were lighter on fuel than they had been for the entire race. What a daft statement.

            The reason why people say “Webber had the race in the bag” is because Vettel was unable to pass Webber at any stage prior to engine mode change.

            That is why Vettel was on the radio to the not even 1/3 of the way into the race demanding Webber be moved over for his benefit. Simple enough explanation?

        2. In Austria the faster driver was denied the win to benefit the slower driver.
          In Shanghai they wanted to hold back the faster driver to benefit the slower one.
          The similarity lies in the fact that there is no need for team orders whatsoever. Both drivers are in contention for the title and they should race accordingly.
          When one team gets a dominant position, all we viewers have is the potential for the teammates to fight for the title. Do we really want it to be decided in a meeting 30min before the race?

          F1 is special. Name another sport where fixing the result is acceptable. That is why it should only be done in very specific circumstances. F1 needs to be very careful how it handles these events and making a race winner apologize for winning is a guaranteed way to become the WWF on the motorsport world by 2020….

          The race was on for both of these guys and they both should have known it, this is where RedBull failed, they confused Webber and made him think he could coast to the finish line.

          1. “F1 is special. Name another sport where fixing the result is acceptable.”

            It’s not special at all, this is the problem with F1, its the perception. People seems to be under the impression that its a single person sport because theres 1 guy in the car, and thats all they see, they dont think about the hundreds n hundreds of people it takes to design/build and run them.

            When a football team has an advantage over another team with 10 minutes to go in the match, what do they do? They start kicking it about to conserve their lead and their energy, the managers/coach will oftern bring certin players off, tactically, so they have them fit for another match. And what happens if you have bet on a particular player scoring a goal, only for him to be brought off the pitch? What happens when theres a pen and the manager/coach decides a certin player, that you didnt bet on, is going to take it? Is that fixing a result?

            When you bet on something, its upto you learn and understand what it is your betting on. In F1 team orders are legal, so its therefore upto you to understand that thats a possibility when taking your bet into consideration.

            “The race was on for both of these guys and they both should have known it, this is where RedBull failed, they confused Webber and made him think he could coast to the finish line.”

            Webber and Vettel both knew they were able to race upto until the last round of stops, this was a pre-arranged understanding, there was no cofusion at all.

      3. As opposed to the 20 times webber did obey

        My favourite is the radio message to webber to maintain the gap to alonso (whilst vettel was between them)

      4. I think it’s safe to say most people don’t like team orders and want to see racing no matter what your bias……

        However I think the big question was if both drivers were actually aware they were racing each other which wasn’t the case

  16. Hm, so in the end its not that much different than how the team reacted after Turkey 2010, apart from not heaping blame on Webber this time.

    “Its only natural”, the others would have done the same, we try not to use team orders, they have been ignoring us for 3 races now. So why then, did Vettel have to apologize this time, what for really if its nothing new? And still, the more important question that arises. Why would a top team have a Team principal who is getting used to being ignored

    I am sure the next few races have all in them to be as intense as those following Turkey 2010.

    1. “So why then, did Vettel have to apologize this time, what for really if its nothing new?”

      Good question. I wonder, did they tell Vettel to make a public apology? They must have, but as you point out its nothing new which seems to imply he apologised because he wanted to himself.

      1. I doubt it. He wouldn’t have been talking to anyone from the team before the podium interviews, and probably nobody either before the press conference. Apparently Webber and Vettel quickly talked to each other before the press conference though.

  17. So… now he’s justifying what Vettel did? and Mark was on fuel saving mode…

    Oh, dear Christian….

  18. There is a big difference between being fair and being an aggressive racer , the most spectacular fearless and aggressive racing driver on earth Gilles Villeneuve was fair i mean you can be a true racer with “balls” and fair at the same time, Christian Horner and Vettel’s fans are trying to hide the truth of Vettel’s unfair play by saying Oh dear he is not a “SISSY” Vettel is a racer (which is not true, he has to demonstrate that on track and don’t tell me Monza 2008, Abu Dhabi 2012 ), he is ruthless blablabla……
    Well can anybody reminds me of Vettel making a move like Mark Webber’s overtaking manoeuvre at “Eau Rouge”, i’m not telling Mark is a better driver than Vettel but in this aspect which Christian is trying to make an excuse Mark is far better
    The fact is : in this case Mark was stubbed from behind it is not the case of Vettel ignoring team orders
    It is true that maybe Alonso and Hamilton would have done the same with Christian Horner behind the pit wall but i doubt if it was another team principle “a la Jean Todt or Flavio Biatore or Frank Williams” they would dare ignore his orders, his words of trying to find excuses for Vettel, his absence in the podium ceremony demonstrates all what i said

    1. Nice logic @tifoso1989. Vettel has yet to demonstrate his true racer abillities and dont tell me China 2007, Monza 2008, Suzuka 2009-2012, Monza 2011, Spa 2012, AbuDhabi 2012, Brazil 2012. Those definately doesn’t count.
      And on the serious side, yes, I remember Vettel squeezin through a car-width space between his “never give an inch” teammate and the pitwall at 280 km/h quite recently. And Webber’s move in eau rouge although spectacular was really taking candy from Fernando who was slow out of the pits on cold tyre.

      1. I remember Vettel squeezin through a car-width space between his “never give an inch” teammate and the pitwall at 280 km/h quite recently

        I have seen Barrichello doing the same thing in Hungary 2010

        you clearly missed the point i didn’t say Vettel is not a winner or he’s not fast i said that this excuse of being a “racer” should not be implied in this case because his teammate is clearly far better in this aspect
        BTW no one can take candy at “EAU ROUGE”

        1. @tifoso1989

          “I have seen Barrichello doing the same thing in Hungary 2010”

          There’s an interesting double standard – not a peep from anyone about Webbers move which is only about a bee’s **** width different from Schumacher on Barrichello. Yet Schumacher was crucified in the press and give a 10 place grid penalty for the next race (iirc). Webber doing essentially the same thing? Nada.

      2. +1 of course a 3 times champion has yet to prove his racer abilities.
        Personally I recognized his talent the first time he stood in for Kubica at Williams BMW F1.

    2. @tifoso1989

      Well can anybody reminds me of Vettel making a move like Mark Webber’s overtaking manoeuvre at “Eau Rouge”, i’m not telling Mark is a better driver than Vettel but in this aspect which Christian is trying to make an excuse Mark is far better

      How about the next race, at Curva Grande? Vettel passed Alonso, Webber crashed into Massa (then crashed at Parabolica).

      At Korea 2011, Vettel passed Hamilton and won. Webber couldn’t get past for the entire race and finished 3rd. Better, at Spa 2012, Senna led Webber, who led Vettel. Webber couldn’t pass Senna with DRS. What happened next? Vettel lines up Webber out of a DRS zone, then passes Senna out of a DRS zone. Webber needed to be pitted to get past Bruno Senna. The actions of a “far better” racer/overtaker? I don’t think so.

      1. Yeah I can think of a better move

        Webber getting taken by Alonso down the main straight of his home crowd in Barcelona after a restart and webber retaking it back

        Korea 2011 hmmmmm

        Webber on harder tyre managing to keep pace with vettel and Hamilton on softs and up their **** and all he had to do was wait till they pitted earlier and get free space and jump them but RBR brought webber in earlier so vettels 200 point lead would not be tarnished

        1. Webber getting taken by Alonso down the main straight of his home crowd in Barcelona after a restart and webber retaking it back

          Which race was that? From your description, it hardly sounds as good as Curva Grande.

          Webber on harder tyre managing to keep pace with vettel and Hamilton on softs and up their **** and all he had to do was wait till they pitted earlier and get free space and jump them but RBR brought webber in earlier so vettels 200 point lead would not be tarnished

          He wasn’t keeping pace with Vettel, when Vettel was out front pulling away from Hamilton, who in turn was ahead of Webber. Webber should have pitted on a different lap to Hamilton if he wanted to pass through the pits. That was Webber’s fault- the car doesn’t autopilot into the pitlane.

          1. Spain 2009

            You have to watch it as both drivers were almost on the grass but they gave each other room and respect and both made good passes on each other within 200 metres

        2. Webber getting taken by Alonso down the main straight of his home crowd in Barcelona after a restart and webber retaking it back

          Which race was that? From your description, it hardly sounds as spectacular as Curva Grande.

          Webber on harder tyre managing to keep pace with vettel and Hamilton on softs and up their **** and all he had to do was wait till they pitted earlier and get free space and jump them but RBR brought webber in earlier so vettels 200 point lead would not be tarnished

          He wasn’t keeping pace with Vettel, when Vettel was out front pulling away from Hamilton, who in turn was ahead of Webber. Webber should have pitted on a different lap to Hamilton if he wanted to pass through the pits. That was Webber’s fault- the car doesn’t autopilot into the pitlane.

    3. @tifoso1989

      Well can anybody reminds me of Vettel making a move like Mark Webber’s overtaking manoeuvre at “Eau Rouge”

      On that very same day, Vettel overtook Rosberg on the outside of F1’s fastest corner – Blanchimont.

      1. that was an amazing overtake, but no one seems to have noticed it, don’t know why

        1. The pass at Eau Rouge was much more dramatic television (and an epic pass, don’t get me wrong), but it happened in a close up as the cars whipped passed.

      2. It’s a brilliant move but was made on a German driver that’s why no one have noticed it, just like overtaking maneuvers on first lap

        1. @tifoso1989

          Excuses, excuses, excuses.

    4. @tifoso1989

      don’t tell me Monza 2008, Abu Dhabi 2012

      I’ll remember that any time you mention Valencia 2012 or Malaysia 2012.

      1. I’ll remember that any time you mention Valencia 2012 or Malaysia 2012.

        Doesn’t even comes close , try something else

        1. @tifoso1989 – they are very similar actually, the parallels are profound: in Italy 2008 and Malaysia 2012, both Vettel and Alonso won in midfield cars in wet conditions. Valencia 2012 in fact was probably closer to Belgium 2012, where they both came from low grid potions to the podium after key players were eliminated.

          So they do in fact; if you chose to ignore that then that is your problem.

          1. The fact is that Torro Rosso was clearly a better car than the F2012 which was hard to keep on a straight line, a Red Bull chassis + a Ferrari engine , Sebastian Bourdais which is i struggle to call him an F1 driver qualified 4th at that race Still those are facts but still a brilliant performance by Vettel
            In Malaysia 2012 Ferrari lost telemetry in the middle of the race so Alonso has to adjust Kers,Fuel,Engine ….set ups without help from the pit and kept his nerve when he was under attack from a that Sauber which was 1s faster per lap

          2. @tifoso1989 – I think it’s far from fact that the Ferrari was clearly a worse car than the Toro Rosso in the wet, but nonetheless great performances from both drivers. That is what I think is lacking in certain camps: an acceptance that Alonso isn’t untouchable, and that Vettel is a bloody good driver and indeed it isn’t all Newey.

  19. greg253d (@greg253dgmail-com)
    29th March 2013, 11:31

    Completely lame. Now the excuses are coming out to why his leadership is ignored by the drivers.

  20. Well said Christian.

    Mark would have done the same, and has ignored team orders previously. This condemning of Vettel is ridiculous given that his team mate is guilty of the same offence many times over and has hardly got any condemnation, but rather praise for his actions.

    Many people keep saying “poor Mark! robbed of a win.” Given his history of ignoring team orders (especially in Brazil 2012), Webber should have been the last person who expected Vettel to follow team orders.

    Vettel just returned the favor. If anyone deserved this it was Webber. After all he’s the person most vocal against team orders. Vettel might come across as ruthless but Webber comes across as a real hypocrite in all of this.

    1. Remind me of Brazil 2012 where he ignored orders? The start is often a common hot-headed defence for the average Vettel fan, but let’s not forget the start is probably the most tense moment in the whole race for a racing driver where everyone is coming at you, and you have a lot to cope with in the car, and yet because Mark slightly moved in the direction of Vettel this is an example of Webber being two-faced?
      Or perhaps you’re referring to the moment when he, Vettel and Kobayashi went side by side into T1 and Webber deliberately ran off the track to avoid a collision?
      Or possibly when Vettel had caught Mark into T8 and Ciaron Pilbeam came on the radio telling him to move over, which he did?
      Yes, very clear that Webber disobeyed a direct order.

      1. And all the Vettel fans are conveniently forgetting 2010 when Vettel shoved and brake-checked Webber of the course before the 1st. cnr. nearly every race.

        1. @hohum Well I for one can’t remember Vettel doing anything wrong along those lines in 2010 so perhaps you could remind us?

          1. @keithcollantine, I don’t remember the details of which race was which, and I don’t say it was “wrong” just harder than necessary, you might recall the incident I referred to as “brake checking” Webber as the one where Hamilton got his nose alongside Vettel and they nearly locked wheels.

          2. @hohum First you said it happened “nearly every race”, now it’s just a single incident you can’t remember the details of, so I’m not worried I don’t have instant recollection of it myself.

          3. @keithcollantine, no I said 1 particular case of brake checking as well as several/many times Webber was forced of the track, it happened in nearly every race where Vettel had pole and Webber was 2nd. Usual scenario at the first turn Vettel would brake early bringing Webber alongside and bunching up the pack behind then he would take the full width of the track through the corner forcing Webber onto the runoff, if you have video of the starts easily available I think you will have no trouble seeing it.

          4. @hohum – point being though? It’s a great tactic for sprinting away from the pack!

          5. Turkey 2010

            Button at spa 2010

  21. Traverse (@)
    29th March 2013, 12:06

    So, let me get this straight. If one driver chooses not to conserve fuel during the race (the consequence being that he’ll having to save fuel later on), But his teammate manages to keep a race winning pace whilst conserving fuel. The latter should be penalised for his superior driving sense…Okaaaaay

    Horner: “Mark’s had been slightly higher than Sebastian’s so he was in a slightly more fuel saving mode than Sebastian.”

    So the only real difference between Vettel and Rosberg, is Vet had the guts to take ownership of his destiny. You don’t become a 3-time WDC by helping your “teammate” win races.

    1. @hellotraverse +1. If Webber used more fuel up to the last stop, then he should have opened a gap sufficient to prevent any attacks from Vettel, but he couldn’t do it.

      1. then he should have opened a gap sufficient to prevent any attacks from Vettel

        He was 4s ahead before the last pit stop,
        http://www.f1fanatic.co.uk/2013/03/25/red-bull-mercedes-resorting-team-orders/

        1. @tifoso1989

          So? Vettel was catching Webber throughout the entire race. The only thing that kept Webber in front was the team allowing him to pit first up until the last pitstop.

          And if Red Bull had done a better job calculating where Vettel would end up after his first pitstop Webber wouldn’t have been in the lead to begin with.

          1. And if Red Bull had done a better job calculating where Vettel would end up after his first pitstop Webber wouldn’t have been in the lead to begin with.

            I don’t know what’s wrong with you , the call of the first pit stop was made by Vettel himself just like Alonso’s first pit stop call in Melbourne , in both cases their teams wasn’t involved at all

  22. I think it’s very strange that Horner says not only Hamilton and Alonso would do the same, but Mark Webber as well. That’s going to be just the message Mark needs when he returns to the RBR garage for the Chinese Grand Prix. “Sorry about the stolen victory, Mark, but we don’t really sympathize with you, as you would have done the same thing”. Horner should just have said “Sebastian was sorry and he has apologized”, and leave it at that, rather than excusing his behaviour (only proving Webber right that Vettel would be protected) and implicating other drivers for no good reason.

    And since this debate will drag on for the foreseeable future, let me put in my view on the difference between last weekend and Silverstone 2011. The “Multi 21” code was agreed before the race, and so both drivers had agreed to it. When Vettel attacked Webber, he broke that agreement, and betrayed his team mate. When Webber was told to “maintain the gap” (I believe it was), Mark ignored his team principal – for one or two laps until he relented – but he did not betray Vettel.

    1. @adrianmorse i have to diagree with you, I think this is exactly what Mark needs to hear, Because he is being very hypocritical, as your example of Silverstone shows: Mark by his owns admission said he ignored team orders, tried to overtake Sebastian and failed. his failure doesn’t show obedience to team orders (or lack thereof betrayal), it show’s he disobeyed and failed to capitalize on it, unlike Seb in Malaysia, and i didn’t hear Seb complain the least bit after Silverstone, nor Brazil 2012 for that matter, where the stakes were much higher.
      And as for Multi 21, Pre Race agreements and Mid Race orders are equal in power, breaking one is as serious as breaking the other, actually Pre-Race agreements are less powerful, because events during the race directly affect these decisions.
      and if any one is going to bring up Seb “sucker punching” Mark and gaining on him because the latter slowed down, I suggest looking at lap times for evidence.
      Up until the pit stops Mark and Seb were doing the same lap laptimes, then on lap 42 Seb pitted with a gap of 2.8-3 secs to Mark, He pitted for mediums and got out setting purple sectors, meanwhile Mark did another lap, obviously slower due to tyre deg.
      after Mark pitted he got out and the gap to Seb was gone.
      This is called the Undercut, you have all seen it many times before, and i don’t see any evidence of engine changes, at least no one sided ones

      1. @mnm101, the thing about a pre-race arrangement is that both drivers agreed to it, but then during the race Vettel broke that agreement, hence the betrayal.

        And I know what the undercut is, thank you very much, and perhaps Christian Horner should have explained why the leading driver on track did not get pit stop priority, as it customary, instead giving the guy behind a chance to attack.

        1. @adrianmorse I wasn’t implying you didn’t know what an undercut is, sorry if u took offense to that.
          The lead driver always gets pits priority, so I’m guessing Mark was offered the chance to pit and chose otherwise..
          As for the betrayal, i have nothing to add on what i already said

        2. @adrianmorse And how do you know that this was a “pre race” agreement. If there was a pre race agreement there woulnd´t be any need of the code?

          Unless you really have acces to Red Bull meetings, in wich case tell us more about that secret world please?

          1. @celeste, because they used the code Multi 21. The drivers must have been briefed on its meaning, and thereby at least implicitly agreeing to follow up on those orders. Also Mark Webber talks about it here in the post-race interviews: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oW_mdavfHTA

            So I’m not trying to conjure up any scenarios here, and I find it surprising that people defend Vettel so vigorously, given that he apologized on TV, in the written press conference, and in front of the entire workforce of Red Bull.

          2. @adrianmorse

            Yeah, Vettel really shouldn’t have apologized. He did what he should have done.
            As for pre race agreements. If Webber doesn’t respect them, who is he to expect Vettel to do so?

          3. @adrianmorse as you can see in the interview is a normal code that they use all the time (Horner says he has used in the las 3 races), so there was no need to pre race agreement for the drivers to know the code.

          4. @celeste, does it matter when they agreed on the code? It could have been before this race, it could have been during winter testing, but at some point prior to this race the drivers discussed the Multi code.

          5. @celeste
            First at Silverstone, it wasn´t that Mark suddenly decided to follow team orders, he couldn´t pass, he said so himself:

            I chose to race as hard and as fair as I thought was possible, trying my best to beat Seb. I got pretty close a couple of times but couldn’t quite pull it off.

            And yes it does matter when they agree on the code, your argument since is that it was a pre race arregement Vettel shoud have stick to it, but since is a standard code for instruction it means that Webber had also disregard it knowing before the race what it means, and being in the same situation as Vettel; so why ask for Vettel´s head?

            And why Webber act like the biggest man, when he himself has done the exact same thing?

          6. Sorry the previous answer was mean to be for @adrianmorse

    2. When Webber was told to “maintain the gap” (I believe it was), Mark ignored his team principal – for one or two laps until he relented

      He did not “relent”. At all.

      When Vettel attacked Webber, he broke that agreement, and betrayed his team mate.

      I don’t find your attempts at persuading yourself terribly convincing.

      1. @jonsan

        I don’t exactly recall the finish of the 2011 British Grand Prix, so you may be right about that.

        I don’t find your attempts at persuading yourself terribly convincing.

        What sort of argument is this though? Perhaps you could up with something more constructive like pointing out any flaws in my reasoning.

  23. It sounds like Christian Horner is struggling to control his drivers. If he knows his team orders will be ignored during a race, then why bother with them? To cover his own back perhaps he’s saying “If Seb and Mark crash its not my fault, I told them not to fight”, or does he genuinely want to them to do as he says but lacks the authority to make it happen, unlike Ross Brawn for example, who from the team radio I heard during the race sounded a lot more certain and authoritative than Christian Horner.

    1. Sounds like the latter really. Ross Brawn is abit of an F1 powerhouse, he’s been around for years and is well established, and for the most part well respected. Horner is basically just a glorified PR man – and I’ll hand it to him, he’s an absolutely master at it, better than many politicians. But he lacks authority completely.

  24. vettel has more power than his whole team..

  25. MB (@muralibhats)
    29th March 2013, 12:49

    Then why was the team order given, if you knew Vettel wold try passing Webber?

  26. I was wondering what Webber meant with “Vettel will get protection from Red Bull as always”. I get it now.

    Basically Horner avoided the main question: was Vettel wrong to ignore the team order? He doesn’t say it’s right (would be strange if he did), but then he doesn’t say it’s wrong either. He elaborates on how Alonso, Hamilton and Webber would react in a similar scenario, he says it’s actually a good characteristic. But if it’s good or wrong what Vettel did, he only says that drivers and constructors have different interests, without actually giving his opinion.

    If I were Horner, I would have said that the team gives their drivers team orders for a reason, and that in a well oiled team a driver respects the team principal’s orders. Vettel didn’t do that, so he was wrong. Vettel then acknowledged his mistake, understands why he has to obey team orders and apologized during the debrief, and now he and Red Bull will move on. That would make a lot more sense, especially as this sort of thing has happened 4 times in 4 years now. Vettel is not a newbie: he knows what team orders are, he knows what it means to ignore them – so what insight has Vettel gained between the overtake on Webber and the podium ceremony that suddenly makes him see ignoring team orders is wrong? What is the value of his apology? And anyway, when Alonso, Hamilton and Webber would do the same in a similar situation, does that then imply it isn’t wrong? Summarized: Horner should step up to the plate and admit that what Vettel did was wrong instead of praising him for his ‘fighting spirit’ (if you can call it that).

    I think it is natural for Webber to question Horner’s policy of equality: Horner basically defended Vettel’s choice to ignore team orders instead of admitting this is not what the team wants to see. The step to thinking Vettel is a little bit more equal than Webber in the Red Bull team is not far-fetched at all.

    1. I was wondering what Webber meant with “Vettel will get protection from Red Bull as always”. I get it now.

      I don’t, so maybe you can explain it to me. What punishment has Mark Webber ever received for his multiple violations of team orders over the years?

      Given that the answer is “None whatsoever”, what exactly is the basis for the claim that Vettel is “protected”? I’d really like to know.

      1. @jonsan I understand why Webber may think that “Vettel will get protection from Red Bull as always” – it wasn’t my intention to write: I understand that Vettel always gets protection from Red Bull. Initially I didn’t understand it because, like you, I don’t see any events in the past that would support that claim. But now Horner practically defends Vettel’s decisions from Sunday, which is exactly what Webber said would happen. Therefore one may conclude that there are some things happening within the Red Bull team (which we of course don’t know about) that would lead to Webber saying such a thing.

      2. Turkey 2010 was all the protection vettel has ever needed since

        Just ask helmut marko

        As for webber disobeying team orders which appears to be only silverstone 2011 and brazil 2012 from what people are bringing up I’m thinking they have not taken into consideration the million times he has obeyed orders

        Not to mention the slight help RBR has made for him with kers issues and pitstop advantages and front wings and starting procedures off the grid

        Nah maybe I’m looking to much into it

        1. As for webber disobeying team orders which appears to be only silverstone 2011 and brazil 2012 from what people are bringing up I’m thinking they have not taken into consideration the million times he has obeyed orders

          Vettel obeyed team orders in the past as well- Turkey 2009 and Brazil 2011 for instance. Webber, a) hasn’t been given team orders that many times aside from GBR 2011 (only the end of last year when he wasn’t fighting for the championship, actually), and b) doesn’t have a moral high ground here due to his own disobedience and previous stance on team orders, I’m afraid.

  27. my take away:
    “Multi 12 means car one ahead of car two. It’s not complicated. It’s not that difficult to translate but both our drivers in the last three races have failed to understand both of those messages.”
    “I think we’re going to give up on that code,” he added. “We need to probably try something else.”

    So we will see some more racing between Mark and Seb or RBR will destroy the race with strategy calls of the one who should come in behind the other.

  28. After said and done, i just realize that Horner is the only guy losing from this situation, because shows weakness, and lack of leading skills for a guy in his position, if not let’s see:

    – RBR has won the same points 1-2 or 2-1, yes the Vettel-Webber relationship isn’t the best but none of them will not try to get the 1st place
    – Vettel has shown that winning is everything for him, wich team doesn’t want thar? Please…Yes some of the public opinion is against him, but also was agains Prost, Senna, Schumacher and so and so…
    – Webber, yes he lost the 1st place but gained the public opinion and a free pass for attacking whenever he feels like Vettel without pointing him fingers. He has nothing to lose

    – Horner, i’m sorry but looks like a puppet, he’s in a critical position, can not defende Vettel but can’t attack him, he’s the person on the spot….

  29. what happened on the track is one thing. trying to (mis)communicate it to the public is another thing, and this side is becoming disgusting, at least for me. who exactly are they trying to fool?

    1. Exactly, @andrewt. Although it’s also getting really nauseating and annoying to listen to the endless attempts to defend Vettel’s behavior by citing other examples of poor sportsmanship. Pffft! If Vettel had done nothing wrong, then he wouldn’t have (been forced to?) apologize(d)!? How can some people defend behavior that Vettel himself has said was wrong/dishonest/treacherous/etc? Cognitive dissonance…

      1. Well said

        No more to say

  30. Webber would have done the same thing. In fact, he has done the same thing.

    Separate topic, but is Alonso going to escape without penalty for not pitting but continuing to race with his front wing dragging on the ground? That was reckless and dangerous on his part.

    1. A drive is allowed to continue with damage. Only when the stewards have notified the team and the driver that the damage is too severe to continue (black and orange flag), he is forced to pit.

    2. @jonsan – yes, that is a completely different topic, best discussed in a completely different comments section.

      Let me add, that come the end of the season, I am sure Alonso will look back on this race and feel he was punished a lot by not bringing the car home in the points already.

  31. Horner admitted there had been previous occasions where he’d attempted to impose team orders on his drivers without success

    If that is true, then he really isn´t in charge of the team is he?
    BTW, will the news of them justifying Vettel´s move ever stop? It´s getting to be a drag already!

    1. If that is true, then he really isn´t in charge of the team is he?

      This is the reality of team orders in F1.

      1) All teams try to employ them fairly frequently.
      2) About 50% of the time all drivers ignore them.

      In spite of the best efforts of some fans and members of the press to pretend otherwise, nothing particularly unusual happened between Vettel, Webber, and Horner last Sunday. Keith did a roundup of some of the other team orders issued by various teams at Sepang – in some cases the orders were obeyed, in other cases they were not.

  32. I don’t like the way Horner has delivered this interview, but I think the point he is trying to get across has been misinterpreted: he is not defending Vettel’s actions, rather trying to dispel this notion that Webber was defenceless to Vettel and that Vettel has no morality whereas every other driver, particularly Webber, does.

    What I would have preferred he do though is make a point of highlighting why Red Bull imposed team orders at all – that was the root cause of the uproar after all.

  33. The Tale of 2 Drivers :

    2 Drivers are conserving fuel through conservative driving in the final stint of the race. Their team mates who are better on fuel are chasing them down to the chequered flag. 2 Team principals sensing the fuel shortage, Tire wear and the potential of a team mates crash order the chasers to back down and hold position. One Driver says okay I dont like it but fine i will do as you say. The other says ofcourse I don’t like it but I am going to take that position.

    So now the driver who held his position is called a loser and his team mate embarrassed, the driver who went on to take the position is a villian and his team mate angry. Eventually there are 4 unhappy drivers , 2 unhappy Team principals and Drama All around.

    Mr Eccolstone must be loving this. No amount of money can buy this publicity for F1 :)

    1. Funny but well quoted

    2. Thanks for the lolz

  34. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
    29th March 2013, 14:45

    Utter codswallop. In China 2010, Hamilton was faster than the struggling Button, but Hamilton held position in accordance with his team’s wishes. In Australia the same year, Alonso was faster than Massa for the entire race, but was unable to overtake; until the finals laps when Massa’s tyres were gone. Alonso was all over him but obeyed team orders and stayed behind. Now whilst Alonso and Hamilton are of course extremely determined and motivated racing drivers, they don’t share Vettel’s irrational desperation to win. Alonso and Hamilton don’t feel quite so bloody entitled to win, so whilst they fight hard for the win every weekend, they don’t come out the other end all miserable if they don’t win. And here’s another difference, both Alonso and Hamilton would, and have, said that their teammates have out-performed them on merit, however if Vettel attempted to do the same he would have a nose-bleed. Alonso and Hamilton know the value of a united team, however Vettel clearly feels he is running the show, and this attitude will, and has, caused damage to his career.

    1. +100. Well said

    2. @william-brierty

      Shall I remind you of Hungary 2007? Or have you remembered Hamilton’s disobedience towards Ron Dennis on your own.

      Hypocrites will remain hypocrites.

      1. WilliamB (@william-brierty)
        1st April 2013, 11:10

        @f1fannl So you are comparing a contextually sensible decision to hold ground and minimize tyre wear with a poorly justified order from the dictatorial Ron Dennis aimed at merely appeasing the frankly disenfranchised Alonso? Hamilton was flying, and there was no need for him to pull over and let Alonso pass, so he was completely right to ignore a non-official decision that had probably been suggested by Alonso himself. These orders need to put into context before you can compare them. On the one hand Red Bull had some of the worst tyre wear seen in the Pirelli era, but faced no threat from the grossly under-fueled Mercedes of Hamilton, so sensibly sought to neutralize the race and get the cars home. Let’s not forget the fact that the first laps of the race were wet, when cars use less fuel anyway, so had the race been completely dry, Hamilton may not have finished the race at all. However the Mercedes weren’t struggling like Red Bulls on tyres so would have been able to pressurize them in the final laps had Hamilton been fueled up properly. Contrast that with a factional plea that simply aimed at restoring the status of Alonso in a paddock that was very much doubting his abilities at the time, and you can see that Hamilton’s decision was perfectly justified and was therefore not resented in the least by the team, the paddock, the media or the world. Frankly, it seems rather hypocritical of you to suggest that that is remotely similar to a desperate and irrational move by a man that clearly feels that his status as the youngest triple world champion entitles him to the win every time he sits in the car.

  35. “We saw it with Mark in 2011 at Silverstone, we saw it on previous occasions with the team, the final in race in Brazil last year, only two races ago.”

    Did anyone follow up with questions about Brazil? It’s obvious that Webber defied team orders there, but for some reason it seems that no F1 reporter wants to know about it.

    1. That’s because Sebastian didn’t make a fuss about it, he was too busy enjoying his well deserved championship

  36. @keithcollantine — “Little Christian Horner sat on the corner (of his stool), and watched greedy Sebastian defy; Mark gave Seb’ the finger, for his resentment did linger, ’cause Christian swallowed all the twerp’s lies. The sports world did wonder, who would allow such a blunder, ’cause surely they’d have to be dumb; then Horner did speak, and prove just how weak, he’d become when he sits on his thumbs!”

  37. Mark Webbers former opinion of team orders: they are rough guidelines, suggestions, to be followed or not as the driver sees fit.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/sport/0/formula1/14145893

    1. Someone should have handed him a copy of this when he got out of the car

    2. Earlier in the race, there is still plenty to go on, and you are helping a guy who at that point of the race is quicker because of strategy or whatever.
      But when you are coming to the line and you’ve only got five laps to go, there is no more strategy to be played out. It’s just a straight fight.
      In that case, any driver is going to be a little bit less inclined to accept a request like that, because they know that is what the result is going to be.

      So When Mark does this he can sleep well but when his Team mate does the same. He can’t and cry in front of Media.

      1. @harsha my thoughts exactly

      2. After reading this I simply can’t understand how on Earth Mark can look himself in the mirror, putting on that act after the recent race? HYPOCRITE, what a jerk. Now I feel he needs to apologize, before I can regain some respect for him again.
        But again RBR management made a complete ass of themselves issuing Team-orders like that, knowing that often the drivers don’t follow them. The blatant loss of face is probably also what upset RBR the most. Seb did the only right thing, and in the aftermath of this both drivers should agree that when they are driving on track, they are in control and the teams role is down to servicing and recommendations.

  38. Sadly, what many people here don’t get is why the team orders are implemented in the first place, its because of the current regulations surrounding this sport. Yes they do promote ‘racing’ and overtaking in some situations, but are clearly failing in some regards.

    You can’t say this was about protecting their number 1 driver, since the team wanted Mark to win. So team orders here clearly arent for that reason. Whats the reason then?

    My take is its the tyres fault. Why? I shall attempt to explain it simply. With tyres that wear so quickly, the teams do not want an inter team battle that could cost both drivers tyres to wear quickly at the same time. This will give other teams an advantage if an extra pitstop is required.

    Why would they wear more quickly? Simply because the tyres are so ridiculous that you cannot drive the car to its full potential, as have been mentioned by many drivers such as Webber and Hamilton. When you are battling with another driver, you ahve to push the car closer to the edge than what team would like, and the tyres wear more quickly. All the drivers are now driving to a delta lap time, set by the engineers and strategists, and are not driving the car anywhere near its potential.

    What does all of this have to do with the events that happened that day, I hear you ask… Well, think about it this way, why do teams deliberately under fuel their car for the race? Are engineers that stupid they can’t even calculate the fuel needed?

    NO. Its because since the tyres do not allow a car to be driven closer to its full potential, the drivers use less fuel as they are pushing less, leading engineers to calculate the fuel needed based on those delta lap times. As we saw with Webber and Hamilton, any time in the race they tried to go faster, they paid for it through the tyres and fuel at a later stage.

    Is this what we want? The Bridgestones were equally ridiculous in the sense they never wore out, but these Pirellis are on the other end of the spectrum, wearing out too quickly. Surely a compromise between the two can be found?

    We already have DRS to aid racing, which so far in the first two tracks proved that its beginning to work as intended, making passing easier but not too easy. But what have these tyres done? They stopped the racing because no team would risk it.

    Think about it – these tyres are destroying racing. And that’s my take on it.

    1. Apart from still disliking DRS I agree with you entirely but would also add that the engine and gearbox longevity rules also create a disincentive to allow intra-team racing, I am hoping for an early gearbox change for SV. but realise the odds are long.

    2. Although it’s too early in the seasson (let’s not forget that Kimi won Australia with 2 stops “only”) your statement is an accurate reflection of what happened in Malasia and if this will be the norm in the next GPs I can only repeat your last sentence. Well put

  39. There is so much debate about Red Bouls “these” and “thats” and that is Vettel’s fault. He sould have just said “leave me alone, l know what I’m doing”,so we would have a comedy now and not a controversy.

  40. Webber] will have equal opportunity to Sebastian as we’ve done our very best to do for both drivers at every Grand Prix that we compete at.” ehm, what about taking the new front off wing off Webber in Silverstone 2010 when Vettel’s wing failed? u can see why Webber was upset when he was blamed for Turkey when it wasn’t his fault. No wonder he didn’t respect team orders in Silverstone 2011 when he was being mistreated. surprised Webber has stayed this long at Red Bull to be honest. Whoever comes into Red Bull next year will be in as bad as position as Alonso’s teammate at Ferrari

    1. @foleyger

      what about taking the new front off wing off Webber in Silverstone 2010 when Vettel’s wing failed?

      Because Webber was happier with the older specification. But of course, he’s always the victim, even when the team use team orders to favour him…

      1. if u remember,Red Bull have an upgrade to their front wings for that Grand Prix. Both were given a new front wing in practice. Vettel’s one failed and Webber’s worked fine. Red Bull then decided to give the 1 new front wing to Vettel which Webber wasn’t happy as you could hear when he won the race. ‘not bad for a number 2 driver’ is what Webber said. Webber was the victim in Malaysia when you consider there was a team order and he was reassured twice about it. Vettel must be really proud of passing a teammate who had his engine turned down. If Vettel and Webber were racing without team orders and had the same engine settings then fair enough. Vettel comes out after and says he didn’t hear the teamorders. Horner would want to manage his team as this has been escalating since Turkey 2010.

        1. @foleyger – Except that the front wing was only available for use because Webber preferred the old spec. “It went to Sebastian based on Championship position, his performance in P3 and the drivers’ feedback on the different front wings from yesterday.“- Horner.

          Webber was only a victim if somehow, coming out of the pits wheel to wheel wasn’t a sufficient sign to him that they were still racing. All from the same person that insists on “battling to the end”.

          Vettel must be really proud of passing a teammate who had his engine turned down.

          And MW must be proud of failing to pass a teammate with his engine turned down and KERS failing.

          1. (@david-a) So you’re comparing Webber’s blatant anger at Silverstone 2010 to the words of Christian Horner? The man’s a snake oil salesman.

            And MW must be proud of failing to pass a teammate with his engine turned down and KERS failing.

            He gave it a half-hearted attempt on a track renowned for its difficulty to pass, Vettel attacked an unsuspecting Webber on one of the ludicrous mile-wide tilke dromes.

            And blaming Webber for Vettel’s usual overtaking clumsiness in Turkey was disgusting, though to answer (@foleyger)’s question, Webber’s stayed there due to RB spending three years (and sadly it’s starting to look like a fourth) with far-and-away the best car on the grid. He’s clearly weighed up the benefits of having the best car, to being in a team where he has the best machinery, so you can’t really blame him for staying at RB.

          2. Woops, meant having the best machinery vs. being treated as a number 2 (even when he’s ahead in the championship).

          3. @sgt-pepper

            So you’re comparing Webber’s blatant anger at Silverstone 2010 to the words of Christian Horner? The man’s a snake oil salesman.

            Yes, given that it was established that Webber hadn’t used the front wing in Satuday practice, because he preferred the original spec.

            He gave it a half-hearted attempt on a track renowned for its difficulty to pass

            “There was a lot of traffic coming to me, but I was still trying to do my best to pass the guy in front” – Mark Webber.

            Vettel attacked an unsuspecting Webber on one of the ludicrous mile-wide tilke dromes.

            Webber exited the pits next to Vettel. If he was “unsuspecting”, then he couldn’t be a particularly intelligent racing driver. You’re just insulting the Aussie.

            And blaming Webber for Vettel’s usual overtaking clumsiness in Turkey was disgusting

            Usual? Since when has he been clumsy in overtaking? Because he had a whole two incidents in 2010? Is Hamilton usually clumsy because he had a mare in 2011?

            Webber’s stayed there due to RB spending three years (and sadly it’s starting to look like a fourth) with far-and-away the best car on the grid.

            Far and away? Red Bull didn’t even have the fastest car in 2012.

  41. This era of double talk and no accountability astounds me. Horner knows this how? Even if they both told him they would, there’s no proof they would even go through with it.

    Let’s not kid ourselves Vet messed up that’s it. Time to move on. I don’t like Vet much but I won’t condemn him for what he did. It’s done and over. RBR shouldn’t have been holding him or Webber up in the first place. Not to condone what Vet did though.

    It’s like me getting into a argument with Keith Collantine (me being wrong) and then another poster knowing other peoples post history and ideas says well Klass and Vettel1 would have done the same thing as Jabosha let’s not kid ourselves. (No offense to the two names I bought up, if so, I apologise).

    I mean really? That’s what’s going on here and he stated his opinion as fact.

  42. sorry ferrari would have scored 15 points [ 10 + 5 ] placing them fourth in the standings not seventh.
    This would place them fourth and not third as we see today.
    sorry did this early this morning shoulda proofed better. 11 WCC points for a win and lets go racing?
    pardon me.

  43. Unawesomebeeswax
    30th March 2013, 1:08

    Webber is just a bag full of excuses (like paul di resta). He rarely has a weekend where he is error free or drives a clean race. To think that vettel would obey team orders after so many years as his team mate, points to stupidity.

  44. Horner should have just stuck to the drivers he knows and not assume what other drivers would do. Hamilton has moved over for his team mate, both Button and Heikki in the past. What matters is what the team makes clear to the drivers, not what they try to engineer by deceit. Alonso has never been told to hold station, so we can’t know his reaction.
    Redbull should just sort out their internal issues and leave others out of it.

  45. As the dust settles I think the biggest loser is Horner. After Vettel ignored team orders and went racing, with Webber fuming, the F1 world looked to Horner for a reaction.

    He showed, for the first time, his weakness as a true leader – something Brawn would never have done. Despite his history as a driver and racer which may lean him towards the racing driver ruthlessness, he is a TEAM principle and he sold his number two driver down the river.

    If Mark was mad at Seb, he must be apoplectic about his boss, whose orders he followed and who is effectively now saying ‘A real racer would have ignored me’.

    If I was Mark, I’d be ignoring team orders from now on, as even the boss admits they are impotent. What does that say about the strength of the boss?

    1. horner has displayed the most impotent leadership i can remember witnessing. he was made to look like a muppet in front of the whole world and his responses only confirmed it. since he completed building the team, he’s clearly only a passenger with occasional (and dreadful) public relations lip service. i have never liked the guy, and he has proven me right.

  46. this is not formula 1 even if vettel breaks every record in f1 he cant be legend and he will never be .

    1. @aamir86 – Nonsense.

    2. (@aamir86) +1.

      (@david-a) All the statistics and records in the world don’t equal greatness.

      1. @sgt-pepper – Give me a non-double standard argument that proves that Vettel isn’t and can never be great.

        1. first whats nonsense in it every one has its own perception ,
          second triple world champion or so don’t make u great , respect ,sports man spirit ,integrity, to honer commitments ,sacrifices , and mature decisions ,they all makes u great, and in f1 driving are your words not press conferences .
          to slap some one deliberately and say sorry its not greatness .
          time will tell as its already telling .

          1. @aamir86

            I said it was nonsense because much of the argument against Vettel (in order to diminish his achievements or show disrespect to him) contains some kind of double standard.

            In this scenario, SV disobeyed a team order. Team orders are often criticised by fans. In fact, another driver who disobeyed a team order was praised for his actions, and his “sportsman” image wasn’t tarnished.

            Second, who are you to doubt the “sacrifices” or “decisions” of the drivers on today’s grid? How would someone like Vettel get to where he is without doing everything possible to prepare himself for this level of competition?

            Finally, you’ve completely contradicted yourself. “Triple world champion or so don’t make u great”, yet “in f1 driving are your words not press conferences”. In fairness. I am no supporter of Vettel’s so called apology, nor of Horner’s words. But if the driving does the talking, then the mere fact that he is an F1 triple world champion means that Vettel has spoken.

          2. nops dear u r totally taking me wrong some times a line is enough to explain and some time a book is not enough and i think its difficult to content u .
            any ways i don’t want to argue with u bro its just every body’ s own opinion
            no hard feelings.

          3. @aamir86 – I won’t continue to debate this because it’s clear that there is little to debate- other than pretty much saying “Vettel isn’t great because I say so”, you and @sgt-pepper have nothing solid to back up that opinion.

          4. bro no hard feelings take care

          5. (@david-a) First of all, I wasn’t necessarily directly criticising Vettel, more making the point that I don’t believe driving greatness is derived of mere statistics and records. Although I wasn’t directly diminishing Vettel’s records as I’m getting rather bored of the fan-boy vs. critics debate, you do make some interesting points.

            In this scenario, SV disobeyed a team order. Team orders are often criticised by fans. In fact, another driver who disobeyed a team order was praised for his actions, and his “sportsman” image wasn’t tarnished.

            Although I see where you’re coming from in the sense that Mark was applauded for defying team orders, whereas Vettel was criticised, there are two key differences. First of all, Mark was preserving his tyres and had turned down the engine on the understanding that there would be no further racing – he could’ve maintained the gap if he’d known Vettel was going to fail to honour this agreement.

            Second, and I feel this is where the fans appear to split – the pit-to-car radio is extremely telling of Vettel’s true attitude towards Mark, even when he had gotten into the lead on merit. Vettel clearly only respects team orders when they suit him; ‘be wise now’ + ‘mark is too slow, get him out of the way’. The utter disdain for what is supposedly one’s teammate is appalling, and considering Vettel has clearly already had preferential treatment at least since 2010, people empathise with Mark hugely

        2. (@david-a) Actually I did reply asking you to clarify what you meant by ‘double-standards,’ I seem to remember you flinging that around before slightly nonsensically, but sometimes posts seem to take awhile to process.

          All I’m referring to is the fact that all the records in the world do not make a driver great. We all define greatness in different ways, and I think this is what separates those who don’t rate Vettel, to those who do. To me, true greatness derives from a mix of raw speed, an ability to put a poor car in places it shouldn’t be, dicing wheel to wheel, and an insatiable drive to push to the end. This is why drivers like Gilles Villeneuve are mentioned in the same breath as 7 times champion Schumacher, why people mention Senna’s drive at Monaco in 1984 or Donington 1993 etc – infact people refer to times like Villenuve vs. Arnoux in 1979 far more than Schumacher’s domination from 2000-2004. Noone doubts Schumacher’s ability, but greatness is derived of more than mere records.

          1. @sgt-pepper

            What I meant is that the common arguments used to diminish SV’s achievements ask him to do something he has arguably already demonstrated, or says something that also applies to other drivers as well.

            I agree with your definition of what makes a driver “great”. Looking at it and applying it to Vettel:

            True greatness derives from a mix of raw speed, an ability to put a poor car in places it shouldn’t be, dicing wheel to wheel, and an insatiable drive to push to the end.

            Has Vettel demonstrated raw speed? Someone far more qualified to judge than you or I believes so. Giorgio Ascanelli, who worked with Ayrton Senna as well as Sebastian Vettel, said: “Twice in my life I have experienced perfection; once with Senna, again with Vettel. In one respect Michael was different because he had to work harder for his success than did Senna and Vettel. With those two it was something else.” That isn’t a statistic, like pole positions, or his record against his teammates. That is praise for his natural ability from someone who worked with the great Senna.

            Can he put a poor car in places where it shouldn’t be? In general terms, a “poor car” would be one that that is in the midfield or worse. Vettel spent most of his early career with Toro Rosso. He finished his first full year 8th in the championship, scoring 35 points of the team’s 39 points. He won at Monza, passed Hamilton in Brazil to come 4th, scored on 7 other occasions, and beat both Toyotas, Red Bulls, Williams, and a Renault in the championship. The team even reckoned in 2009 that SV made the difference.

            Can he dice wheel-to-wheel? Now, I’ll give you the fact that Vettel has made errors. He isn’t perect in this regard. But would you use those to rule that he absolutely cannot race wheel to wheel? He fought through the field three times last year, the highlight for me being Spa, where he did almost all of his passes out of the DRS zone, including on his teammate, and a car that his teammate was stuck behind, for extensive periods of the race.

            Does Vettel drive to the end? His engineers telling him off for setting fastest laps at the end of a race is proof of that.

            But some people vehemently deny all of this, or come up with a questionable excuse (e.g. overrating the abilities of Toro Rosso, or deliberately underrating Mark Webber as a driver/teammate/benchmark). Okay, Vettel is 25, and has a long career still ahead of him. But given all he has done and shown, I do not believe it is fair to simply dismiss this driver, by saying stuff like “even if vettel breaks every record in F1 he can’t be a legend and he will never be”.

      2. totally agreed

        1. (@david-a) I really didn’t want to get into this, so I’ll be quick.

          Has Vettel demonstrated raw speed?

          Yup.

          Can he put a poor car in places where it shouldn’t be?

          Nope.

          overrating the abilities of Toro Rosso

          The STR3 was the RB4 with a Ferrari engine and gearbox. The legendary Bourdais qualified 4th. Hamilton and Kimi were stuck at the back of the pack, the most competition he had was from legendary…Kovalainen.

          or deliberately underrating Mark Webber as a driver/teammate/benchmark)

          I actually think Mark is an excellent driver, but I feel he can’t make these new regulations work for him or his driving style – it’s a real shame because I’m a huge Webber fan.

          fought through the field three times last year

          I’ll hand it to you that Spa was one of this stronger perfromances, but to say he ‘fought through the field’ when Grosjean took out half the pack is a little silly. He crashed twice in Abu Dhabi, and had two safety cars, as well as the best car since the Asia update. In Brazil basically the whole field jumped out of the way, and his crash into Senna was his fault – he turns into corners expecting people to either yield, or dissapear.

          Does Vettel drive to the end? His engineers telling him off for setting fastest laps at the end of a race is proof of that.

          That’s indicative of the utter lack of discipline RB have over him, as proven by the events in Malaysia. This, combined with the disgusting way with which he talks about his teammate only prove to tarnish his already questionable personality.

        2. @sgt-pepper

          The STR3 was the RB4 with a Ferrari engine and gearbox. The legendary Bourdais qualified 4th. Hamilton and Kimi were stuck at the back of the pack, the most competition he had was from legendary…Kovalainen.

          You (unsurprisingly) forgot to mention that the RB4 wasn’t exactly a good car. It finished 7th in the constructor’s championship, in the hands of two experienced drivers (one of whom you believe is “excellent”. STR didn’t start the season with that car, and Newey only changed RBR from using the Ferrari engines in the first place, because he felt the Renault to be superior for his designs.

          And at Monza, Bourdais qualified 4th… with a wet setup. Vettel was on pole with a dry setup. Bourdais, like Webber, would have slid down the order- being 40 seconds slower in the race. Not to mention that “Hamilton and Kimi were stuck at the back of the pack” because they simply didn’t do as good a job as their respective teammates on that weekend, let alone Vettel.

          When people try discrediting Monza 08, they forget that it wasn’t even Vettel’s only great performance in a midfield car that year- he scored excellent results on a consistent basis. Hence he definitely put that car in places it shouldn’t have been.

          I’ll hand it to you that Spa was one of this stronger perfromances, but to say he ‘fought through the field’ when Grosjean took out half the pack is a little silly. He crashed twice in Abu Dhabi, and had two safety cars, as well as the best car since the Asia update. In Brazil basically the whole field jumped out of the way, and his crash into Senna was his fault – he turns into corners expecting people to either yield, or dissapear.

          Actually, at Spa Vettel was delayed by the events going on ahead of him- he was 12th after the restart, but finished ahead of Kimi, who had a relatively smooth race, and was 2nd after the restart. So it is anything but silly to say that he fought through the field.

          At Abu Dhabi, he had one minor collision (i.e. only breaking a front wing endplate) with Senna when fighting for position. The other was a silly mistake under the SC. Nevertheless, he made up for it, passing numerous cars to get that podium.

          In Brazil, you know it is an exaggeration to claim that “basically the whole field jumped out of the way”. Bruno Senna, I seem to remember, was 10th, with Vettel 7th. Bruno had outbraked 2 other cars to get to the inside of Vettel, where his front hit Vettel’s rear, suggesting it was a rather ambitious lunge.

          That’s indicative of the utter lack of discipline RB have over him

          Really? You’ve demonstrated that you’ll type anything, as a Webber fan to tarnish Vettel’s personality and skill. You want a driver to have an “insatiable drive to the end”, then criticise RBR and SV for pushing for records at the end. What’s the point?

  47. “Mark! Now more than ever is the time for that Ozzy Grit!”

  48. I’ve never liked the concept of Team Orders, but what’s more irritating is when someone like Christian Horner thinks he can run any kind of jive drivel by us with the expectation we’ll all react like a pack of Pavlov Dogs. “Oh, thank you Herr Doctor Horner for taking a moment out of your demanding schedule to acknowledge our existence (lick , slobber) ……..No, what Sebastian Vettel’s “defiance” of YOUR team orders” indicates is the weakness of your character and resolve.

    Just curious, but What do you think the reactions would be from say Frank Williams, Ron Dennis or Ross Braun if one of their drivers defied the man in charge. And no, this is not a multiple choice question. Oh, forget I asked.

    As to your “everybody does it at the elite level” mantra…you don’t really believe that, do you? I have never seen Alonso pull that sort of stunt, nor Hamilton, Button, or anyone I can recall. Marc Webber is a very good driver, but we all know Vettel is faster. Period. Webber predicted you would find a way to excuse Sebastian’s behavior and he was right.

  49. Why is Horner trying to treat F1 fans like idiots?

  50. I’m curious

    Horner said both his drivers failed to understand multi 21 in the last 3 races

    This would indicate webbers bad start off the front row with vettel in the last race in australia was organised as this was the only time they were near each other in the race

    Does this mean he was already ordered to let vettel into the first corner anyway???

  51. I turned off before the incident ,got bored ,so for me Mark won anyway.

  52. If Horner is going to defend SV by saying he, like some other drivers, are not ones to obey orders to hold station, then why did he give team orders? Why would he have ever expected SV to obey? And why then the big uproar, the big surprise, the big tensions, the big apology, if Seb was just being a champion? And why didn’t Horner just radio MW that SV is way faster, please make way without incident? Sorry Mark, the strategy didn’t work out today but we were close. We’ll do better for you in China.

    Personally I think there was a genuine, solid order that was agreed upon at some point either before the race or before the last pits, that the leader was to remain the leader, or otherwise MW wouldn’t have seemed so obviously bent out of shape, and SV so obviously so sheepish about an unpopular win.

    Might I suggest, in case someone already hasn’t since I’ve found just too many comments to weed through, that perhaps SV has had so much glory in the last 3 years, and with this being race 2 of this season and with MW having a very strong showing and in fact leading, that the team was trying to throw MW a bone…an earned one, don’t get me wrong. And might I suggest that when folks around here have talked of hypocricy of MW’s for he has disobeyed team orders too, those team orders were within an atmosphere where MW was seeing so much of the weight go on SV’s side on the team, at least psychologically if nothing else. How many races has it been since MW uttered the words ‘not bad for a number 2, eh?’ I give MW a little more leaway when it comes to fighting against the team’s desires for SV to succeed, and fighting for his reputation and his career.

    I think one of the sad possiblities here is that those in favour of the excitement SV brought by defying an order in this one race, may end up ruing it because what top level driver now would go to Red Bull to partner SV who will steal a win out from under you even when the team claims there’s racing and all’s fair. Not only is it his team but even when it isn’t, it is. We might now be doomed to seeing SV and some up and comer, not there to compete, because that will make Horner’s and SV’s life easier, and we the fans the loser, ala Ferrari and their one-rooster rule.

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