Vettel: “I don’t apologise for winning” in Malaysia

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Sepang, 2013Sebastian Vettel said he does not apologise for winning the Malaysian Grand Prix after disobeying orders to finish behind Mark Webber.

“I think there is not much to add than what happened,” said Vettel in a video interview ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix.

“I told the team straight after I apologised for putting myself above the team, which I didn’t mean to do. But there is not much more to say really.

“I don’t apologise for winning, I think that is why people employed me in the first place and why I’m here. I love racing so that’s what I did.”

In the immediate aftermath of the race Vettel said “it?s not a victory I?m very proud of because it should have been Mark’s“.

Vettel said the row over what happened in the final laps overshadowed a strong performance by Red Bull: “I think unfortunately people didn’t see that we performed well on the day – as a team I think we did a very good job.”

“We got a fantastic result and I think we’d had a very strong weekend in Australia already, even if we didn’t get quite the result we wanted.

“But in Malaysia we were surprised again to be at the top and racing at the top and the whole race we worked excellently well with the tyres etc… I think that’s what people forgot and I think what stuck to their heads was the way the race ended.”

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180 thoughts on “Vettel: “I don’t apologise for winning” in Malaysia

  1. Profile photo of Fer no.65Fer no.65

    Good for him. As a Mark Webber fan, I’m glad he battled that hard. Mark should’ve known… well, he defo knows now that Vettel won’t yield just like that.

    That’s what he always ask. Get on with it, end of the story ! It’s just that Vettel’s not really a likeable guy, for whatever reason… winning everytime probably made people hate him. So this is a big story because of that only thing alone… otherwise, people would all agree with him.

      1. Profile photo of Fer no.65Fer no.65

        @omarr-pepper Did… I… Ever… Say… That… No… One… In… The… World… Likes… Vettel??

        No, I did NOT ! I just said that he’s not really likeable, as that same article shows. Had Kimi refused to yield and passed his team mate, people would’ve applauded him saying “Ahh, Classic Kimi !”.

        So when you say that “according to me”, check again, because I said no such thing.

  2. Profile photo of raymondu999raymondu999

    I think the important thing to note here is that the two comflicting messages were given in two separate states – an adrenalin-riddled racing driver just out of his car, versus a clearheaded young man who’s had time to reflect and think.

    It could be that Vettel was afraid of media backlash just after the race, and in a semi-panicked self-defense mechanism, apologised. Now though, with time to reflect and think through – perhaps he’s decided that he’s unapologetic after all.

  3. Profile photo of Tifoso1989Tifoso1989

    i can just say what the hell of all this “schizophrenia” in the F1 world.
    -Helmut Marko said that Mercedes has a clear policy of n°1 & n°2 drivers but in Red Bull they don’t
    -Christian Horner said that he is not quite sure about what Mark Webber means by saying Seb would get protection and then he said that Alonso & Hamilton would have done the same
    -Ross Brawn said that team orders are against his sporting nature.
    -Sebastian Vettel says that that he doesn’t apologize for winning but he already did
    -Mark Webber complaining about Seb ignoring team orders but he did the same in Silverstone 2011
    I’m just wondering is it too important to be hypocrite in F1 ? and what would have happened if these people told the truth?
    I know that it is a human nature to say that “It was better in the past”, but i do believe that these people will never be considered and respected like the old straightforward guys “Niki Lauda,James Hunt, Jochen Rindt , Gilles Villeneuve ,Enzo Ferrari Colin Chapman………” and forgive me because i didn’t mention all of them
    I just hope that this crap ends ASAP

  4. Pedro Sobota

    Now is when I lost my respect for him. Not because he conceded to winning an artificial win, but because I see he still thinks that’s winning, when that’s losing.

    1. Profile photo of OmarR-PepperOmarR-Pepper

      25 points disagree with you :P

      We don’t like the end of a story, but it’s a story.
      People didn’t like in 2008 when Hamilton lost the victory in Spa by the penalty-added time. If Massa had won that championship, he would still be the 2008 champion, not the 2008 “loser” just because we didn’t like the way it was grabbed.
      If vettel wins this championship, his detractors will use the excuse of the malaysian race to say it was not deserved

          1. Profile photo of RobertoRoberto

            … are you saying that Webber can’t finish ahead of Vettel…

            I think he’s saying the opposite (unless sarcasm). That somehow Webber won’t help Vettel and be Mr Nice guy anymore.. as if that was ever the case anyway lol..

  5. Profile photo of gzegzolekgzegzolek

    Vettel was right that he was fighting for first place with Webber.
    But why he is apologise if he thinks he did that he should as a race driver.

    Second case.
    He diobeyed team instructions but in the midle of the race HE EXCPETED AND WANTED team orders for Webber. He wanted from the team to move Webber away.

  6. Profile photo of WarfieldF1WarfieldF1

    Despite wanting “racing” all the way; surely whatever sort of pre race agreement communicated by the team boss should be respected, be it “if you are leading after the last scheduled pit stop then your team mate will not overtake” or “if you are leading with 10/15 or 20 laps to go your team mate will not overtake” .
    Failure of RB drivers to folow team orders probably points to Horners weak position within a team that he is clearly not the BOSS of.
    Mercedes on the other hand had a lot to loose, (on the basis of last years progress they need to maximise early season points if they are available) and had been fighting hard with each other so some sort of team order seemed understandable to prevent a mishap; although whether the correct team order was given is probably open for debate

  7. Profile photo of vishyvishy

    I think things were not clear and Vettel took advantage of it because he thought he could get away with it. In fact he did away get away with it and 25 points. Given those circumstances Vettel should not have gone for the win as I believe that it will be very detrimental to his title chances this year.

    Do I want team orders so Mark can win? No I don’t. But I sure hope he beats Vettel this season.

    The only reason I can think of that Marko says no team orders is because he thinks Vettel can so comprehensively beat Webber. We might see a different Webber starting now, either totally beaten or dominating. Either way we are in for a cracker of season. I hope Mercedes also gives up team orders completely.

    1. Profile photo of RobertoRoberto

      We might see a different Webber starting now, either totally beaten or dominating.

      What you’re suggesting (that Webber will be incredibly focused to beat Vettel) has been the case for the last 3 seasons! Nothing has changed between these drivers since the last race and Vettel knew that before and after his move. He knew he doesn’t have Marks support anyway (as proven multiple times previously).

      Webber was trying everything in his power to beat Vettel and always came up short, even in 2010 when it was all in his hands in Abu Dhabi. He fluffed a WDC himself that day and could hardly blame Vettel or the team after that.

      What makes you think this is going to change all of a sudden?

  8. brny666

    So basically he is saying he’s sorry that he had to defy and upset team orders in order to win, but not sorry to win. I think his comment is fair and that’s what he should have said right after the race in 3 weeks ago.

  9. Profile photo of Owen ConwellOwen Conwell

    I have mixed feelings about this whole situation. Webber was at a disadvantage at the time because he had his revs down and was not expecting a charge from Vettel (from what I understand). But racers are racers and should be allowed to do just that. If Vettel was faster overall he should have been allowed to pass Webber if he could. I believe given the circumstances, he should have obeyed the team, but I also think that Infinity Red Bull Racing should be the ‘Bad Guy’ in this situation, not Vettel. To protect your driver from an attack from his teammate is like giving them an undeserved victory. Winning a race also means beating your teammate and if you can’t do that, you don’t deserve to win. I just wish Red Bull would have given us a legitimate race, because had Webber know the entire race that there were no team orders, he would have race more aggressively and not been on the back foot when Vettel chased him down. Again, Red Bull should shoulder any blame being thrown around here.

    1. Profile photo of Jon SandorJon Sandor

      Webber was at a disadvantage at the time because he had his revs down and was not expecting a charge from Vettel

      None of that is actually true. It makes such a nice story that I can see why people are reluctant to give it up though.

  10. TonyRomas

    This site should be renamed Since when did Keith become such a Vettel fan that he injects
    Vettel-positive statements in all of his posts?

    Just one example of how Keith tries to skew perspective: Christian Horner mentioned that Vettel’s engine was on more power than Webber, but Keith only reported this news a few days later, and only included it as part of the daily round up and not even as the main story of that round up, even though this was important news. And in his daring fanboy-like defence of Vettel actually missed this point completely.

    I used to respect Keith for his total impartialness and professional journalism but I realised even he falls to being favourable to some drivers over some.

    I’m leaving this site, for good.

    1. Profile photo of Keith CollantineKeith Collantine Post author

      injects Vettel-positive statements in all of his posts

      Can you point to where that has been done in this article?

      Christian Horner mentioned that Vettel’s engine was on more power than Webber, but Keith only reported this news a few days later, and only included it as part of the daily round up and not even as the main story of that round up, even though this was important news.

      The quote you’re referring to came from an interview Horner gave to Sky and was run in an article on March 29th, five days after the race.

      I think some other sites used the quotes several days later. It’s hardly surprising they would want to use a different headline to try to make them look like something other than old news, or to disguise the fact that they’d taken quotes from someone else without crediting them.

    1. Profile photo of David-ADavid-A


      This guy is just DEVIOUS, DISHONEST and INSENSITIVE.

      It’s so dishonest and devious to race someone who has come out of the pits near you, isn’t it?
      And insensitive? Maybe the tyres are sensitive, but no-one watches motor racing for sensitive people.

        1. Profile photo of David-ADavid-A


          Yes, it is so “arrogant” and “disrespectful” to race until the end, against someone who had no issue doing so the other way round back in 2011. If anything, Red Bull should show some respect to the oldest man on the grid, and a world champion, by trusting them to race in the second race of a season without telling them that it is “silly” to do so.

          1. Profile photo of vishyvishy


            I want them race too and not just be managed.

            But this is not the first time Vettle has shown he is an arrogant spoilt kid. Calling names and making rude remarks to other drivers during and immediately after a race is something he does consistently. You need to remove your rose-tinted glasses and see things for what they are.

            He is a great racer, probably the best in the current grid (along with Alonso) but he is also a kid and acts like one. Needs to grow-up.

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