Horner: “We had the same thing in Brazil”

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Mark Webber, Sebastian Vettel, Kamui Kobayashi, Red Bull, Interlagos, 2012In the round-up: Christian Horner says there have been other occasions when his drivers have refused to respond to team orders.


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Vettel sorry for Webber pass (BBC)

“Asked what Vettel meant when he said he hadn’t done it deliberately, Horner said: ‘He felt he hadn’t heard the call. That it was unclear to him what the instruction was. But then again we had the same thing in Brazil the other way around.'”

Red Bull: Vettel’s actions deliberate (Autosport)

“When asked why the team did not ask Vettel to relinquish the position to Webber in the closing stages to make up for his defiance, Horner said: ‘Do you honestly think that if we had told him ‘slow down and give the place back’, he would have given it back?'”

Bernie Ecclestone: Lewis asked me to get him a move to Red Bull… but they turned down the dream team out of loyalty to Webber (Daily Mail)

“Had Mark gone, Dietrich [Mateschitz] would have signed Lewis.”

Pit-stop blunder ruins Jenson Button’s hopes in Malaysian Grand Prix (The Guardian)

“The guy on the right is devastated. It is such a small mistake but it can cost you dearly.”

F1 boss Bernie Ecclestone gives Malaysia the thumbs up (The Star Malaysia)

“They need to finish what they started. It is obviously not the same as Singapore. Maybe because they don’t spend the money.”

Analysis – Mercedes ‘FRIC’ suspension (F1)

“[Mercedes’] much-talked-about ‘FRIC’ (Front and Rear Inter-Connected) system… is understood to link the front and rear suspension hydraulically and can be adjusted in a similar way to the brake fluid.”

Ecclestone, the French race circuit and the real story behind that $44m ‘bribe? (The Telegraph)

“I helped the people that own the circuit in Ricard, it belongs to the trust. I helped them and told them the sort of hospital they should build and even the sort of car run-off areas they should build. Gribkowsky said, I ran the trust and this is one example.”


Comment of the day

To say F1 Fanatic was inundated with comments yesterday would be quite an understatement. The vast majority of them were on one subject:

Ultimately this is a sad day for the spectators, to see what was shaping up to be a great race ruined by an intended processional first-to-fourth positions.

Not at all happy with what Vettel did, and do not for one second believe he didn?t know what was expected of him, but ultimately it is the teams that are ruining the race for those watching.

Lets assume team orders are not allowed and no suggestion of them playing out was in place; we would have seen a great fight between Vettel and Webber in which they scrap for position with Vettel likely getting the upper hand, but as a result, scrubbing the tyres and significantly dropping pace, which leads to Hamilton and Rosberg catching them up, maybe having a tussle, only for them too to suffer from fuel issues. You would have ended up with four unpredictable cars fighting for 1st, with possibly cars behind (if able to catch up due to strategy) coming back into the race and maybe upsetting the order further.

It should be up to the drivers to decide how far they can push the pace and think of the long view, rather than the lap they are on; at least that way a good race could have turned into a great race.

Having said that, best post-race I?ve seen :)

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  • 122 comments on “Horner: “We had the same thing in Brazil””

    1. Be interesting to see what would have happened if Webber went to Ferrari, and Hamilton to Red Bull. Could you imagine a similar situation to yesterdays race with Vettel and Hamilton? Talk about fireworks! Also Ferrari would cause more friction by having Webber instead of Massa, even if Alonso and Webber are good mates.

      1. If Webber had to endure what Massa did during the last season, he probably would have crashed into Alonso on purpose after a race “Days Of Thunder” style.

        1. Why do people always have a go at ferrari.If a team has chance to win the WDC with one driver with the other driver totally out of contention,any team and TP would do what ferrari did.The difference to what Red bull and merc are doing is that the it is the 2nd race of the season and they already implementing team orders.

          1. Because Ferrari brought team orders to a whole new level in the last 10 to 15 years.

            1. i think it was more ross brawn then ferrari… and now he is at it again at mercedes

          2. you haven heard about Austria 2001 and Austria 2002….. where some German chap was allowed to “overtake” a Brazilian bloke …..both only 6 races into the season …

          3. @tasvat001 – I agree, at least Ferrari waited until mid-season (in 2010 anyway).

            1. and they make no bones about what they do. Dont have to issue weak sorrys etc

        2. @dennis +1 Lol Lol Lol

      2. I’d like to see Mark in a McLaren…
        He and Button get along like “bros”, so it SHOULD be a nice, friendly team!

        1. McLaren does sound like it would be the perfect team for Webber….I’m sure McLaren would like to dig into Mark’s head a bit and get any Red Bull info out of him :)

        2. Traverse (@)
          25th March 2013, 12:19

          You’re right, a Button Webber pairing would be a very friendly one. They wouldn’t win anything, but nevertheless they would be chummy chums. And whilst the likes of Ham and Vet are storming to race wins, new bff’s But and Web can have group hugging sessions and tell each other how wonderful it feels to be mediocre.

          1. +1 LOL

    2. What a day has gone by!

    3. Just pretty disappointed, thought Vettel was better than all this.

      However, it’s been done, I just hope the whole team moves on from it.

      Or better yet, see that team orders on the whole damages the sport and ban it again, (or at least until Ferrari wants to use them).

      1. @mike

        I agree. Team orders need to be banned again and fast.

        Have the FIA listen in on all team radio’s to pick up coded messages and discipline them. A race ban or two will most definitely get their attention.
        I have no desire to watch fixed races like soccer fans are deceived with fixed matches.

    4. Already making excuses for seb.
      “But mummy, he did it 1st..”

      1. Actually I think Horner have been more critical with Vettel than when Webber has done somethn simliar.

        1. This exactly. Even being completely out of contention for the title Webber wasn’t cooperating, but since apparently no harm was done everybody forgot about it. Vettel CONSTANTLY ignores the team when it comes to turning down the engine and goes for another fastest lap, risking the material and points for the sake of records.

          It’s all fun and games until somebody loses a GP victory.

          Both of them, Webber AND Vettel seem to have a problem with the team telling them what to do, and Horner should have made it clear already in 2009, latest in 2010 that they have to do what he says. Either that, or you let them play and potentially crash.

          1. @dennis

            It’s all fun and games until somebody loses a GP victory.

            Hehehe, good one. +1

    5. When were Mark and Seb in close range at Brazil. Surely Horner can’t be referring to 2012?
      2011 would make sense.

      1. I think he mind h wasn´t going to fight Vettel. In the first lap Webber moves started the accident Sebastian had, and we all know how that ended…

      2. He’s indeed referring to Brazil 2012, and Vettel didn’t handle it that well either, I remember after he came out of the car and Horner congratulated him, one of the first things he did was complain that Mark tried to push him at the start (right before waving the crowd very hard to hear btw), from that moment I knew Red Bull were going to be their own enemies and that this would be Mark’s last season.

        1. It not the same complaining to your boss than on broadcast, and even so Webber called Mark a team player, even when his actions could have costed Vettel the tittle

          1. @celeste Vettel’s own actions could have cost him the title. He was turning into turn 4 like if he was leading the race by 2 seconds. Maybe he was fuming at Webber for blocking him on the start( Webber said that he was concentrating on himself at the start and Brundle said at the time how difficult it is to concentrate on anything else at the start with 20 drivers around you), and the anger clouded his judgement. But the mistake was his

            1. @montreal95

              I don’t buy that for a second. You could clearly see Webber moving over to cover Vettel. If it were the racing line I would have understood but his actions left Vettel no choice but to lift and avoid hitting Webber while Massa and Alonso flew passed Vettel on the outside.

              As for the crash with Senna. Senna tried to overtake 3 cars in one corner. That was bound to end badly. He must have thought he was his uncle for a second and figured he could make it work.

            2. @F1fannl You’re of course entitled to your opinion but I’ll stick with those of M. Brundle and D. Hill who say that there’s no such thing as the “racing line” at the start. At the start you use the whole width of the track to go where it’s the most beneficial for you

              Regarding the 4th corner. Senna may have been over-ambitious there(not sure about that, it’s not like he wasn’t gonna make the corner) but that doesn’t mean Vettel can turn in from the outside, being in the pack like he is and expecting all others to give up their battles so as to let His Royal Highness Sebastian the First of His Name through

      3. OmarR-Pepper (@)
        25th March 2013, 2:44

        The moment of the photo, mate. When Webber tries to overtake both Kobayashi and Vettel, almost crashing with them (actually Webber ran out of the track for a few moments)

        1. @omarr-pepper That moment you speak of is actually when MW was playing the team game. Had he not, he would’ve risked to turn into the corner.

          Apart from the start, which as Martin Brundle said at the time, is a very difficult time to concentrate on your team-mate, MW did nothing wrong in Brazil. He also let SV past when he came up behind him during the race.

    6. Did Webber not go really wide/off the track at Turn 1 in Brazil to avoid hitting Vettel? Can’t remember the team orders though.

    7. Well **** me, there’s St Petersburg in America!?!
      And there I was, thinking Indy Car had a race in Russia in this time of year!

      Should have at least called it New St Petersburg. Or even better get a new name for it.

      1. Holy ****! I was under the impression St Petersburg as in the one in Russia (and the only one I am aware of)! LOL

      2. Call it St-Pete

        1. San Pedro?

      3. @brace – I’d like to go to Birmingham… in Alabama!

        1. @david-a Yes, and I thought Memphis was the ancient capital of the Pharaohs not of Rock’n’roll!

          Oh, and while you’re in Alabama, you might want to jump across the state border with Georgia to visit Athens!

    8. Bernie’s comments about Sepang are interesting. I was there last year for the MotoGP and it’s a great circuit, with some problems that should be able to be easily fixed, and in my opinion are what is holding the circuit back from reaching its full potential. In order of significance they are:

      1. Getting to / from the circuit is a nightmare. It’s 60km from downtown KL and they have a freeway running all the way to the circuit, and the airport which is next door, but normal traffic rules don’t seem to apply. At the circuit people park on the freeway blocking lanes, no joke. On race day for the MotoGP it took 3 hours to go 60km on a bus to get to the circuit. The buses that run to and from KL are infrequent and seem to be managed by completely incompetent people, they have buses full of people going nowhere, they have drivers who stop at service stations to buy a news paper etc etc. There are is priority for buses, they have to sit in the same traffic jams as cars, and the end up driving in the shoulder to get anywhere. But what really frustrated me is that there is a train from KL to the airport, that stops at the airport, that could have been extended like 4 or 5km to the circuit, and used to get people to / from the circuit. Why this never happened makes no sense to me.

      2) Timing, as far as I can tell it rains every afternoon in Sepang, both the MotoGP and Formula 1 start the races too late. It’s hard to get spectators to a race, especially from overseas if they can’t even be guaranteed that they will see a whole race.

      3) The circuit is a bit run down, well the circuit isn’t but the spectator facilities are. The toilets get blocked up, the grandstands are rusty and look like an abandoned ship that has been left to rust away . Also pedestrian movement is not particularly well thought out. What I mean is it appears that it was well thought out by Tilke, but the operators of the circuit do strange stuff like put the signing stage at the main entrance of the circuit reducing footpath width down to like 2 metres, causing massive bottle necks.

      4) You cannot walk around the circuit. You look at the aerial photo and there is heaps of green space, but you’re stuck in your one spot. If you bought a grand stand tickets that is the only place you can go. Unlike the Australian Grand Prix, if you buy a grandstand ticket you can walk around the whole circuit and watch from different general admin vantage points with no problems.

      1. I meant to say that there is no priority for buses, they have to sit in the same traffic jams as cars, and they end up driving in the shoulder to get anywhere.

    9. crazy race! unfortunately, there is no up side for webbo, one of my favorite drivers. infiniti red bull vettel racing remains his best opportunity at success.

      it’s not a matter of “he did it first, now we’re even.” it’s a matter of “it was done (at least) once before and now it’s settled” except it clearly isn’t settled by management. one of their drivers puts himself ahead of the team, and openly defies the team leaders because he thinks it’s all about him. and he’s probably right – do you seriously think vettel has caught hell from management? more likely, dietrich and helmut pulled him aside to say “do what you want to the australian, but don’t undermine horner. we need him and his people, ok? good boy, have another bratwurst.”

      1. Exactly what I was thinking.
        On one side you’ve got people like Horner and Newey that say “ohhhhh nooo Seb don’t do that” and then on the other side Dietrich and Helmut “do it if ya like, we will never fall out of love with you”.
        Red Bull again need a few PR lessons as once more the situation has being very mismanaged.
        Thank God for the fast car, otherwise this team would be full of temper tantrums all over the place.

      2. “do what you want to the australian, but don’t undermine horner. we need him and his people, ok?

        This is probably pretty close to what they actually told Vettel

      3. And Webber has always gotten so much spanking for his antics like in Silverstone ’11 or Brazil ’12. Oh poor, poor Mark Webber. Always being the victim.

        1. Sorry, Webber has never receive a spanking. The only moment Horner has reacted similar to what he is doing rigt now it was before Brazil 2010.

          1. That’s what I meant. Sorry, I forgot my sarcasm smiley.

      4. @f1yankee

        Would a sane person expect anything else? How many titles would they have won with Webber and Coulthard? 1 maybe. 0 most likely.

        I do agree management at Red Bull is awful.

    10. Horner is Marko’s lapdog so he can’t rock the boat too much ,he needs to show his allegiance to Vettel camp.

      1. @howard

        I don’t like team orders, I’d rather see team mates battle each other with fierceness and respect. But I understand them, after all there are teams and a constructor’s championship and whenever we have a team, we need a boss and by definition anyone under the boss should respect his decisions.

        If Sir Alex Ferguson asks Nani to play left-back is a certain occasion we expect him to play left-back. If he dares to confront Ferguson’s instruction he will certainly pay the price of his defiance.

        Nico Rosberg was being held by slower Hamilton and asked his boss to let him pass to chase the Bulls but he was denied and respected the decision. I think he was right, but I still think that Lewis himself should have let him pass, but here both respected their team orders. The case was different at Red Bull because allegedly both drivers were told to slow down and the one leading did slow down while the one behind took it as an opportunity to close the gap and then mount an aggressive attack that his own engineer seemed to dislike. Plus, after all that his boss, Mr Horner, says that even if he asked to give the place back he would’ve ignore it… that’s bad, very bad.

        Alex Ferguson is not that young anymore but I think Jose Mourinho should be considered to take over Horner’s place and show those boys who’s leading.

    11. Sounds like a lot of mixed messages are coming out of Red Bull. On the one hand, the post-race radio transmission had Horner demanding that Vettel explain himself, and his tone made it pretty clear that he wasn’t happy. Now he’s claiming that this sort of thing happens all the time, and while he may have had the chance to let his temper cool, Horner is already fairly well known for keeping a cool head – which demonstrates just how upset he was with Vettel after the race, and shows just how contradictory the team has been in handling it.

      I suppose that, on a certain level, they have themselves to blame for this – trying to pretend that their drivers get along when they so obviously don’t will inevitably lead to people questioning the effectiveness of any sanctions they hit Vettel with.

      1. Now he’s claiming that this sort of thing happens all the time

        Are you suggesting it doesn’t? We know of a few incidents where it has happened, and doubtless there are others which have not been made public.

        I suppose that, on a certain level, they have themselves to blame for this

        Webber for sure and Vettel perhaps have been ignoring team orders for years now. So of course Horner is to blame for this.

        I will say that all this is blown ridiculously out of proportion. If they’d crashed out while racing each other all the hype and hysteria might be justified. But nothing actually happened, at least from a RB perspective. Their drivers still finished 1-2.

    12. On COTD,
      Spot on but your comment supports teams decision yesterday. Human beings hate unpredictable results, we are risk averse by default and what team bosses did was “risk management”, too bad it killed the race.

      1. Human beings hate unpredictable results

        Shouldn’t this be a “perfect” reason for doing away with race starts? They are the most unpredictable part of a race. :-)

        I don’t think the COTD is saying team orders are irrational. We all know that most of the time they are absolutely rational.

        That’s the point: F1 became way too rational for most spectators’ liking.

        Fans are probably not watching it to see some éminence grise performing computer-based risk-management in the background, and then race car driving professionals “doing the job” (as even Webber put it yesterday) based on the input.

        At one point risk-averse behavior must be curtailed in a racing environment (though less through selfish disobedience on the part of “I can get away with anything” mentality wunderkinder, and more by making rules made to that effect).

        1. Yes mate. Actually I wanted to see them racing but from teams point of view that was unnecessary risk and orders respected that logic that you and me disapprove.

          I don’t know if you already did, but if not, try reading “Thinking, Fast and Slow” by Daniel Kahneman on how we make decisions.

          1. from teams point of view that was unnecessary risk

            Yes, that’s exactly where rules come to the rescue

            When rational behavior dictates one thing (managing every possible aspect of racing from a well-equipped pit wall and minimizing business* risk in every imaginable way), while spectator interest dictates another (intra-race decision making lying with drivers and done on the race track), rules can shift the first to be more in line with the second.

            It’s not about the general human dynamics of making decisions; one cannot change those, as you rightly point out.

            It’s about how much you limit different aspects of decision making (input it uses, ways it can be communicated etc.) in order to improve the whole experience.

            * Please note that I’m using the qualifier “business” here. Maximizing the point haul for the team, strategizing to avoid risky situations (like on-track battles), optimizing finishing order in order to have the marketable star on podium (even by brazenly lying to your other pilot à la Ross Brawn) etc. are not racing decisions but business ones.

    13. Did the guy on the right raise his hand to say he was finished? The footage i saw he was still working when they released jenson.

      Thats not his fault

      1. Clearly not his fault, the probably didn’t come off fast enough, and they car was already on the ground before he could lock the nut.

      2. He was showing crossed hands – i would say that the guy with “lollypop” already released Button and then the “right-wheel” guy showed crossed hands as wheel was not done.

      3. Yeah, that’s what it looked like to me too, that they dropped the rear first. I think they have the lights though, so maybe it was that he accidentally hit his button saying he was done or whatever, rather than that he mistakenly thought he was done and deliberately pushed the button, if you see what I mean. Will have to rewatch it.

        1. Yeah, just watched it again, the gun is still on the tyre when Jenson is dropped and takes off. So it could only be that guy’s fault if he simultaneously hit a button on the gun or something? I’m not quite sure how the lights system works.

          1. Sam Michael confirmed to (?) 5Live that it’s a system linked to all the guns and jacks. When they’re all finished, it goes green.

            It’ll either be a signalling issue or the guy made a mistake that triggered a ‘finished’ signal.

            1. @optimaximal thanks, yeah I think I listened to that, but I can’t remember the details! Presumably linked to in a way that requires the mechanic to physically trigger the light, right (I.e. not automatically triggered)? Then he must have done so accidentally, unless the team are blaming him unfairly for a systems error, as you say.

            2. The teams very rarely blame the mechanics for any mistakes in pit-stops. They’re high-energy quick-fire situations run by mostly volunteers within the team. Only the chief mechanic has any clearly-defined roll. The media, however…

              The process was probably a combination of human error and technical error. The guy with the gun was probably working from muscle memory, pushing the gun on then triggering a complete signal. There was probably a micro-second where he realised the nut wasn’t seated, but he accidentally triggered a complete signal anyway.

            3. There was probably a micro-second where he realised the nut wasn’t seated, but he accidentally triggered a complete signal anyway.

              The mechanics apparenly don’t need to actively give an ‘ok’ signal. McLaren apparently has overhead camera’s that register the activity around the car and which generates the green light to the driver.

              So there is – quite litterally – no room for error.
              The McLaren mechanic in this case did react, but Button had already left, that’s how fast everything goes.
              I’m wondering if they’re not pushing beyong the human limitation to react. Nothing should compromise the safety in the pit lane. F1 cars with loose wheels in the pit lane do pose a serious safety concern.

      4. If you watch the footage it’s obvious that the front right wheel man was not at fault.

        The front jack man dropped the car and moved out of the way before the wheel was attached properly. The Mclaren overhead green/red light system was clearly showing a red light for the front right wheel. Then Button pulled away, understandably trusting the judgement of the front jack man instead of checking the lights himself and realizing that one of them was still red.

    14. I am not sure if this has been mentioned elsewhere but this whole debacle is very similar to turkey 2010 but with Mclaren.Mclaren had 1-2 with lewis leading button and the team made the call to both drivers to hold position until the end of the race.All of a sudden jenson overtook hamilton,but the difference is hamilton made the move and overtook button again.I can remember hamilton been very upset after the race even though he won.The point I am trying to make is i don’t recall people villifying button for disobeying team orders or criticising Mclaren for implementing team orders in the first place and this when team orders were disallowed.

      1. @tasvat001, the situation was similar for Lewis in that his race engineer had told him Jenson would not overtake him, but Jenson had only been told that both had to save fuel (and tyres). So Jenson did nothing wrong, but it didn’t look very good from the point of view of Lewis’s cockpit.

        1. I also recall McLaren’s official reply to that situation like that.
          Jenson supposedly had not received explicit instructions to maintain position. He had only been told to turn down his engine.
          Besides, Hamilton immediatley took back his position and a little later, the message to both drivers to mainain position was broadcast. Button then effectively backed down.

          But it’s been a while, I may be off

          1. Sounds exactly how i remember it.

    15. @keithcollantine Felipe Massa’a birthday is on 25th April, not today…

      1. Let´s celerate 2 times ;)

    16. happy birhday @guilherme Texeira and to @Marc

    17. Regarding Keith’s tweet on Alonso, it’s interesting to think that already it’s arguably impossible for Alonso to equal his performance of last year. In 2012, he crashed out of Japan for which he was partially to blame, but yesterday’s crash was entirely his fault. Also, he didn’t leave many other points on the table last year; the only thing that springs to mind is a bad strategy call in Canada.

      He can still arrive in Barcelona with more points than last year, because China and Bahrain were the only two rounds were the canine features of the car resulted in a low points score.

      I also noticed that in Malaysia Alonso celebrated his 200th Grand Prix, even though he only started in 198 of them. I guess he doesn’t want to celebrate in Bahrain.

      1. He can still arrive in Barcelona with more points than last year

        He will need a 3rd and a 4th place in the next two races to be ahead of 2012 championship poitns by two just 2pts which is very realistic given the performance of Massa in the last race and Ferrari will have an updated aero package for China but i do believe that his performance of 2012 will be in the history of the sport it is just unrepeatable , i think that it is possible for him and Ferrari to score more points than last year and even win championship but there is a difference between performance and results, this year’s car is much better and it will allow him consistently to fight for victory (if its development through the season will be OK), and BTW last year Fernando has 2 retirements and 2 poor results, theoretically he can afford this year 3 or 4 retirements and 1 more win and he can still be ahead on pts

      2. it’s interesting to think that already it’s arguably impossible for Alonso to equal his performance of last year.

        I don’t expect him to score more points than last year. But then, all he needs to do is score better than his rivals this year.

    18. petebaldwin (@)
      25th March 2013, 8:33

      “But then again we had the same thing in Brazil the other way around.”

      Only YESTERDAY Horner said “I’m not quite sure what he means by that,” referring to Webber saying Seb will be protected. This is what he meant Christian! You’re already doing it!

      1. True! Weber should be looking for another team or job now.

      2. @petebaldwin Here were I live what Horner did is called “stating the obvious”. It’s quite a long way from protecting Vettel, which I think is kinda baffling as Horner has been a hundred times more critical of Seb than he was when Mark disobeyed team orders.

        1. what Horner did is called “stating the obvious”.

          The great big baffling question is why not a single F1 reporter – to the best of my knowledge – has ever stated the obvious with respect to Brazil 2012, or asked Webber the question which should be staring everyone in the face – why did you make things so difficult for your championship-chasing teammate?

          There is something very wrong with the state of F1 journalism.

          1. @jonsan

            Because they don’t want to know.
            Ask yourself this? What delivers more hits and gets you more readers?
            1. Making a triple champion look like a villain.
            or 2. Making a multiple race winner who is often perceived as the underdog a villain.

    19. I think Vettel’s plan was to disobey the orders and then apologise.
      Great plan, knowing there’ll be no repercussions.

    20. “But then again we had the same thing in Brazil the other way around”
      And by your statement i predict that it will be the same thing in the next races

    21. The only part of the race I didn’t enjoy was the team radio of “Get Mark out of the way, he is too slow” and it wasn’t so much the comment, but it was the way he said it, I felt it lacked respect, something you wouldn’t hear from the other drivers about their team-mates. The actual duel between Webber and Vettel itself I found so exciting I was literally stood on my chair shouting and screaming! So I can’t really criticise Seb for making the race a whole lot more entertaining..The only other thing that was dissappointing was how glum Hamilton was post-race, yes it is not the way he wants to get on the podium but nevertheless, conjure a smile for your first podium for Mercedes? Anyway never mind, loved the race.

      1. Melchior (@)
        25th March 2013, 9:41

        This comment ,“Get Mark out of the way, he is too slow” reminded me as to why i dislike Vettel as a person

      2. Most or all other drivers complain about having team mate going too slow in front of them and that they should be let passed. Alonso has done it on many occasions as well as Hamilton and Button. I have not heard any sound bites from Kimmi but I am sure he has said it in the past. It is very common with two drivers being on different strategies.

        1. They were fighting for the win though.

        2. Well to be fair, I think Kimmi just wants to be left alone lol…

    22. I think the best bit of the whole debacle was the post-race/pre-podium green room.

      Not Webber getting angry, but Adrian Newey’s “i’m not angry, just very disappointed” face. I think that will get to Seb more than anything else. Also, if it’s planted in both Newey and Horner’s minds that Seb will openly disobey them and risk both cars, it could be interesting to see how it all plays out going forward.

      More telling was Marko’s BBC interview, where he called Merc out on ‘Team Orders’ with Toto Wolff standing right behind him.

    23. Ban the bloody team orders, or make separate car teams, ooor one team=one car. You can’t control or can’t excpect to control real racers! Team orders=mobing! And now Horner is making things even worst! This is a problem that should be dealed now or we will have frustrations in the future as well.

      1. The problem isn’t specifically team orders, it’s that the team agreed on a strategy and Vettel deliberately diverged from it. Mark had turned his engine down as a result of the agreement, Seb hadn’t, so Mark couldn’t effectively respond.

        1. Same thing in reverse in Silverstone, 2011.
          Vettel had a KERS issue, and so was told to drive cautiously, assuring that Webber wouldn’t threaten from behind. Of course, Webber did, catching Vettel off guard. Of course, Vettel retained the place in this instance.

          My summary of the whole situation:
          Vettel is a selfish kid.
          Webber is a hypocrite.
          The whole fight was incredibly entertaining.

          1. On your summary, that is pretty much spot on.
            – Vettel is even more immature than most 25 years olds. I have seen more respect, compassion and understanding in some teenagers.
            – Webber knows that he can’t trust the team, let alone Vettel as much as he wishes he could, so he knows full well that Vettel would go for the win, just as he would have wanted to if the roles were reversed (although ultimately he probably wouldn’t have the guts as it most likely would result in him getting the boot).
            – It was dam entertaining, just a shame it wasn’t called by the team that they are allowed to fight to the last lap half way through the race, would have made it much better.

        2. Mark had turned his engine down as a result of the agreement, Seb hadn’t, so Mark couldn’t effectively respond.

          You’re just making things up now. Both drivers turned their engines maps down, and then had a cracking good race. Anyone who says that Mark “couldn’t effectively respond” did not watch the race.

      2. David not Coulthard (@)
        25th March 2013, 10:33

        This is a problem that should be dealed now or we will have frustrations in the future as well.

        While F1 isn’t as much of a team sport as something like football or basketball (or software projects, but those aren’t games), it’s still a team sport.

        With that being said, it irritates me that some commenters say “It’s a team sport” when responding to some things, the WDC is much more “precious” than scoring more goals than anyone else in a season.

    24. PR disaster for Red Bull, imagine putting Vettel’s picture next to a can of the stuff, most people will think, aahh thats the german guy who stuffed his team mate.
      Not clever.

      1. Is Red Bull the most hated team in F1? Would be interesting for a Keith to do a poll. Ferrari were well in front, but I would think that Red Bull would be right up there now lol.
        I like Red Bull as a company, but not fond of the F1 team combination of Marko, Horner, Newey and Vettel.

        1. I love Seb, but find it very difficult to like Red Bull. That said, you have to respect their engineering and race strategy/management. My girlfriend loves Ferrari and Red Bull though (take a guess as to why, haha).

          I’m diehard McLaren. I love the way they conduct themselves and never seem to let a driver become larger than the team, and the name. However, you aren’t human if you didn’t start Malaysia pushing for Force India to mix things up again.

        2. Any team/driver that goes on a long winning streak becomes hated and everyone besides their fans starts wanting to see them fail. I wouldn’t put too much weight on that though. We’ve seen it with Schumi and even Alonso when he won back to back titles. It’s actually a good measure of success..

    25. Interesting thing is seeing people saying that this was an example of Vattel being hot headed and irrational. To my mind, what Seb did was very well thought out, logical, and (in most respects), absolutely the right thing to do.

      In 2010 Vettel won the championship by 4 points. In 2012 he won it by 3 points. The difference between finishing first and finishing second is 8 points. It doesn’t take a genius to work out that dropping 8 points to your teammate might make the difference between winning a fourth championship, and being a runner up. So under the circumstances Vettel made the most logical decision – overtake his teammate on the track and just deal with the fallout from the team later on. No matter what, those 8 points are in the bag, and come the end of the season they will likely be critical.

      Red Bull brought this problem upon themselves, just as they did in all of the other situations where their drivers have fallen out over team orders. While I totally understand the reasoning behind asking Seb not to attack Mark, the two drivers are not robots, and are extremely competitive individuals. As has been pointed out, Vettel, Webber, Button, and plenty more, have all disobeyed team orders in the past when they’ve turned out to be disadvantageous to them. Because every single point is totally critical. A better (though naturally more risky) solution is to say to them “ok guys, we’ve got the race win in the bag, turn down your engines and manage the tyres – you’re free to race, just keep it clean and make sure you bring it home in one piece” – give the drivers a little bit of credit and show that you trust their ability to fight it out without it coming to blows. And in a more relaxed situation like that, it’s less likely that they’ll have another crash. After all, how can you expect the two drivers to properly respect each other when you imply that you don’t trust them to be able to do their jobs properly?

      1. @MazdaChris – Great comment and I agree. McLaren have done what you suggested in the past with Hamilton and Button and it always worked out great for them. They fought each other hard (but fair) with the team being fully in control. RBR should def take a leaf out of their book.

      2. @mazdachris, in this instance, I think the team order was not for fear of them crashing (though Seb came pretty close to the wall), but for fear of them running out of tyres. Of course, by this stage Mercedes’s challenge had blunted so there was little reason for the team order.

        Also, telling them it’s Ok to race but to look after the tyres at the same time doesn’t achieve anything, as you cannot fight for position while looking after your tyres. The guy in front will have to go fast enough to keep the other out of DRS, so the guy behind can force him to speed up.

        In this case, I think Red Bull had two options:
        1. Let them race, and trust them to be mature enough to bring the cars home.
        2. Not give Vettel the benefit of the undercut. If Webber had been allowed to postpone his final pit stop until he could have made it to the end without worrying about his tyres, he would have started his final stint with something like a four-second lead, which he would probably have been able to defend (after all, Vettel couldn’t pass him either even when he was moaning “Webber is so slow, get him out of the way”). Prior to the final stop, Hamilton was 7 seconds down the road, so there was no danger of Vettel being overtaken by the Mercedes again.

        But instead Red Bull gave Vettel permission to attack Webber, and with Webber emerging from the pits side-by-side with Vettel, it is not a great stretch that Vettel’s permission to attack was still valid for the next couple of corners. Of course, Vettel should then have slowed down, but as he was still in the DRS zone, the temptation to have another go must have been too great, and must have seemed only a small extension of his ‘license to attack’.

        Btw, the difference between first and second is 7 points.

        1. Sorry, yes, it’s 7 points not 8. Still, the fact is that championships are won or lost on far smaller margins than that. So I’m not in the least bit surprised that Vettel would have decided it was worth taking a bit of flak for the sake of a few extra points. I know it’s early in the year, but the points you win in the first race are just as important as those scored in the finale. Vettel was able to overtake Webber because he had a speed advantage in his car – at the end of the race, he was genuinely the quicker of the two. So as long as he was able to pass him safely, it’s hard to see why Red Bull would have such a problem. By making it a huge issue with team orders, they engineered a situation where the only way for Vettel to take the initiative was with a rather gung-ho and bitter battle on the track. How have they not learned by now that favouring one driver over the other inevitably ends in tears? In their team at least…

          Part of the problem is that Red Bull seem to be mired in the days when team orders were banned, so they have all of these smoke and mirror tactics for hinting to their drivers what they want them to do. Why not simply say “Seb, don’t overtake Mark”? Why all the coded nonsense? It makes it seem like they’re doing something underhanded. Or indeed why not “Mark, Seb is faster than you, don’t fight him when he overtakes…” if they were worried about tyres? It seems pretty obvious that someone as determined and competitive as Vettel is never going to turn down the opportunity to score extra points, if the opportunity is available to him. Maybe they were just trying to prove a point to all the people who claim that Vettel is the number 1 driver in the team and that Webber isn’t allowed to win races?

          The sad thing really is seeing Webber getting a sour face on (as usual) and whinging about it, when the fact is he lost a place because he was slower than his teammate. Contrast that to Hamilton’s reaction, almost being ashamed of having been gifted a place he didn’t deserve. Why does Webber think that he’s entitled to keep a place he’s not fast enough to keep on merit?

          1. I don’t think that is what happened at all. Weber seemed to pit one lap ahead of what Red Bull expected (remember the scramble to get ready in the pit when he entered pit lane?). If Weber waits one more lap, Seb makes up enough time to come out in front anyway (as Weber’s tires were going off), and Red Bull gets the result they want/need for best PR benefit, which is why they are doing all of this.

            Instead, Weber comes in when it helps him the most, Seb can’t quite get by, Weber almost stuffs him into the wall defending his spot, and then on the next lap, Seb passes him. Then Weber brings up the team orders. When was the engine turned down? In the pits? Right when he came out? One lap later? No one knows.

      3. @mazdachris

        I agree completely. Great comment.

    26. I think Webber summed it up rather nicely by saying, “Seb will have protection, as always, and that’s all there is to it,” or something to that effect.

      I love Vettel. But will openly admit to being lulled into thinking he was soft due to that baby face and generally boyish demeanor. There’s a shark under there. Webber needs to go. Not because he’s a bad driver, he isn’t. He needs to get out from under Vettel’s shadow and go where his skills are appreciated. Ferrari? Possibly. Though I find it difficult to believe he and Alonso would not have the same kinds of issues—even if they are mates.

      1. I think Webber summed it up rather nicely by saying, “Seb will have protection, as always, and that’s all there is to it,” or something to that effect.

        Remind me again what harsh punishment Webber suffers when he defies team orders? Webbers’ hypocrisy on this matter is mind-blowing. His words explaining why he defied team orders:

        Asked how he felt about the team orders, Webber replied: “I am not fine with it, no. That is the answer to that.

        “If Fernando Alonso retires on the last lap, we are fighting for the win.

        “Of course I ignored the team because I wanted to try and get a place. Seb was doing his best, I was doing my best. I wasn’t going to crash with anyone.”

        To now turn around and cry that Vettel did not obey team orders is just contemptible.

        1. @jonsan +1
          Webber just got his own medicine, but I wonder how many GP Horner needs to learn that he can’t control neither of these 2 drivers on track – and I don’t think he should either. Any of the top drivers should tell their team: When I’m driving I’m in control – You advice on strategy and provide the equipment, service and new tyres, but when I drive I do what I do best and let me control and decide for myself. A la Kimi’s comment: “I know what I’m doing!”

        2. artificial racer
          26th March 2013, 23:41

          Excellent comment.

    27. Regarding this ugly episode Red Bull are having, I can sympathise with Webber and I would also be angry if I was him. However I also would have done the same as Vettel, I don’t believe in morality when it comes to winning in sports, so I can understand Vettel’s actions although I don’t believe his apology is sincere and I think he’s talking rubbish when he says he didn’t mean to do what he did.

    28. I do not understand all the attention taken into the pit-stop error for justifying Button’s failure to get a good result! The problem was on the right tire, he retired due to severe problems on the left tire that they actually said could have broken the suspension. Perez had to pit the next lap due to his tires being dead as well!
      Even without the pit-stop error, Button would never be able to make the tires last until the end and the extra stop would put him at Massa’s reach for sure, probably even Grosjean!
      Unless the right tire issue could have been caused by the pit-stop error which does not seem logical at all.

      1. Correction to my last phrase on the previous post:
        “Unless the left tire issue could have been caused(…)”

    29. And what about Eclestonne’s new rambling regarding Lewis? Didn’t he had similar comments regarding other drivers moves in order to create dream teams?
      Does Bernie ever gives statements to the press not being high on drugs?

    30. 3 Years ago, Team orders were illigeal by FIA and it was a considered a Sin.
      Fast forward to today “Not Obeying a Team Order is a Grave Sin… ”

      I like F1 for this. Change is the only thing that is constant in F1. Good Job Bernie & Todt.

      I am waiting to hear from Marko, Bernie and Todt about their perspective of this incident.

      1. @tmax

        Bernie has already said Red Bull and Mercedes shouldn’t have imposed team orders.
        And I agree with him.

    31. Luca might be waking up every morning and saying
      “I want this Kid in my Red Hot Ferrari. He belongs here. The Tifosis will love him. Stefano …. make sure you don’t lose sight of him :) Either way let me call Bernie to make sure that the deal in on the table. “

    32. @KeithCollantine going by the amount reactions and comments here and everywhere, Does this incident come up top in the most commented subject list. I guess it might be getting close to 2012 Brazil or the 2012 Brazil Yellow light saga or even the 2007 McLaren drama.

      1. @tmax I believe one of the most controversial and commented topics was the BBC/SKY saga in 2011!

    33. They really should stop awarding the WDC based on who is the fastest driver in the fastest car and start awarding it based on which driver is most polite and kindest to small furry animals.

    34. Christian Horner says there have been other occasions when his drivers have refused to respond to team orders.

      One of them was the subject of a poll on this site.


    35. Lets remember their will only be one man who redbull will favour if it comes to the crunch, and I think we all know who that driver will be. Expect webber to be strangely off the pace from now on and suffer even more so called kers failures from now on ;)

      1. Expect webber to be strangely off the pace from now on

        Even more off the pace you mean? Or is over a second slower in both qualifying sessions on the pace?

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