Sebastian Vettel

Flawless Vettel storms to fourth

Posted on

| Written by

Sebastian Vettel was in the headlines for all the wrong reasons at Fuji last weekend after crashing into the back of Mark Webber.

But he more than made amends for the blunder with a clinical drive to fourth from 17th on the grid in tricky conditions.

It’s the best finish for the team since Toro Rosso took over from Minardi in 2006. The last time a Minardi finished fourth was Christian Fittipaldi in the 1993 South African Grand Prix.

The team has never finished on the podium, having now taken four fourth places since it was formed in 1985. It contested 340 races as Minardi and, since then, 34 as Toro Rosso.

It was a result earned by both driver and team, whose judicious pit work meant Vettel was the only leading driver to make just one pit stop on a day of mixed conditions.

It’s also the best result for 20 year-old Vettel in his seventh Grand Prix. He finished eighth on his Grand Prix debut for BMW at Indianapolis.

He had a mixed weekend up until that point. First his ten-place grid penalty for the collision at Fuji was rescinded, then he picked up a five-place penalty during qualifying for impeding Heikki Kovalainen, leaving him 17th.

Team mate Liuzzi started 11th and finished sixth, which was also his best result to date, and leaps Toro Rosso up from last in the constructors’ championship to seventh.

Related links

Author information

Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

11 comments on “Flawless Vettel storms to fourth”

  1. I was extremely impressed with Sebastian Vettel. He drove really, really well and earned his points thoroughly today. Driver of the day.

  2. The strategy he was on coincided perfectly with the prevailing race conditions, but an error free drive from the young chap. He more than makes up for Fuji, considering in this instance the conditions were more favourable for even the frong running drivers. Now Tost and Berger can stick it in Speeds face that they have made the right driver selection for next year. It would really be interesting to see what the other serbastien is capable of, when they become team mates next year.

    As for Liuzzi, lets just hope he can market himself with these points. I dont really think he is a spectacular driver at the moment, although the cars he has raced in havent been up to scratch until fairly recently if u also observe how well the sister RBR team is goin too.

    Interestingly, it only took a single minute for Torro Rosso to storm past Honda on the points table, yes there is a bull by the sidepods, but the core of the team is still, minardi.

  3. OMG hahahahahaha did anyone see the way Webber was waving? for a moment i thought he’d jump out of his car and pursue on foot.

  4. “but the core of the team is still, minardi.”

    Yes, running a Red Bull chassis. It’s a good result, but not quite as impressive when you take into account the fact they didn’t actually build their own car, in essence they just manage it.

  5. Robert, i agree, its a managed car, but considering Honda’s Ability and all what not, you would expect they would be challenging even lowly placed toyota at the very least.

    The point isnt really about Minardi/Torro Rosso doin great, but rather, about Honda doin really poorly

  6. Poor oliver’s got it all wrong.
    Honda are bad but STR have improved …. a lot !!!
    and had Scott Speed been in the car there’s little doubt the result would have been any different. Luizzi has outclassed Vettel every race but this one,
    and don’t Vettel rac most of the race alone unchallenged, Luizzi on the other hand did a great job holding off a superior BMW! We’re “stuck” with Vettel and he will improve, most rookies do but today’s finish was more luck than skill.

  7. I was really pleased for Vettel today – he could easily have fallen to pieces after what happened last weekend.

    His strategy was perhaps a little on the lucky side that it timed perfectly with the weather but after some bad luck last weekend I think he deserved a bit of good fortune.

  8. “Poor oliver’s got it all wrong.”

    I disagree, I think he’s right. Honda have been absolutely abysmal and are easily the worst team of the year in my opinion. STR have improved a bit, but like I say they are only managing a car. They’ve not built it from scratch, and they’re (as far as I can tell) not designing, building and developing a car for next season either because they’re going to let Red Bull do that bit. At least Honda have given up developing their dog of a chassis and are starting again.

  9. To be fair, technically Red Bull Racing don’t build their own car either…

    As far as I know a separate company, Red Bull Technology, design and build the cars for both RBR and Toro Rosso thereby getting round the whole customer-car fracas.

  10. two races in difficult conditions twice vettel has been up contending for podium place i dont think its a coincidence. seem to be a very good driver from what i can see

  11. John i agree with you about Vettel, All I was simply talking about was his performance in relation to Scott Speed. I dont care too much for Speed, but he was removed from the team based on personal dislike and not performance. And the fact that Vettels strategy was the ideal one for the race doesnt detract from the fact he put in a wonderful performance.

    At the last race in Fuji, even the team admitted the used 2 different setups for the cars as a gamble just in case the weather predictions turned out to be different, and that will always work for a single driver but ultimately the team will benefit.

    At the end of the day anyway, its all academic, Tonio is leaving the team.

Comments are closed.