Vettel weathers Lotus onslaught for home victory

2013 German Grand Prix review

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After the trauma of Silverstone Pirelli speedily produced a one-off concocting of tyres designed to guard against further mid-race blow-outs.

The Grand Prix Drivers’ Association even threatened to boycott the German race if further punctures occured. But there was no sign of them throughout practice, nor during the race itself.

Once the furore over tyres had subsided the main event saw Sebastian Vettel weather fierce pressure from both Lotus drivers to finally add one of the few achievements missing from his Formula One CV: a victory in his home grand prix.

That he did so by putting one over the driver who is tipped to become his team mate next year can only have increased his satisfaction.

Red Bull seize the initiative

Massa spun out on lap four
The performance of the Mercedes was a major talking point heading into the weekend. Questions persisted over what they might have got out of their covert test for Pirelli. Lewis Hamilton gave the W04 its sixth pole position of the season. Could he reproduce the form shown in those opening laps at Silverstone before his puncture?

The answer came within seconds of the red lights going out: No, he couldn’t. From second and third on the grid the two Red Bulls pounced. Mark Webber actually made the best getaway from the third row, but heading to turn one on the outside he had to yield to Vettel.

The Lotuses held fourth and fifth with Felipe Massa behind them until he made a surprising exit, stage left, at turn one as lap four began.

“Unfortunately he locked up the rear wheels under braking and spun, possibly because of the lack of grip,” explained Ferrari’s technical director Pat Fry. Massa had been the highest-running driver to have started on the medium tyres. Following his demise Fernando Alonso’s F138 was now the first car on the harder tyres, holding seventh behind Daniel Ricciardo.

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Ferrari gamble doesn’t pay off

The Red bull pair led into turn one
During qualifying Ferrari reasoned they were unlikely to challenge the Mercedes and Red Bulls for the first two rows, and so qualified on the harder tyres. This would spare them the trouble of having to drop into the midfield pack early on in the race after starting on soft tyres.

But faces must have fallen at the Scuderia when the tyres blankets came off their rivals’ cars before the race to reveal just four other drivers were using medium tyres. What’s more, many of those who started behind them on softs pitted within the first six laps, relieving the pressure on Red Bull and Lotus.

By lap six Alonso was already ten seconds behind Vettel. Hamilton then peeled off into the pits, releasing the Lotus pair. Vettel came in on the next lap to cover Hamilton, then Raikkonen followed suit the lap after. The Lotus came out behind the Mercedes who was in turn following team mate Nico Rosberg.

Webber’s pit stop on lap eight was a disaster. He was sent from the pits before the right-rear wheel was correctly attached. The wheel worked loose and bounced down the pit lane, striking a cameraman who was hospitalised. Webber spent two minutes having a replacement wheel fitted, by which time he’d been lapped and was last.

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Grosjean gives chase

That promoted Grosjean into the lead. The Lotus driver, who’d complained earlier in the race that Raikkonen was holding him up, found his soft tyres were still in good shape. With Raikkonen bottled up behind the Mercedes pair and lapping a second and a half slower, Grosjean brought himself into contention.

He eventually took on medium tyres on lap 13 and after taking Jenson Button on his out-lap had only Vettel in front of him. The McLaren driver had started on mediums and was yet to pit, as was fourth-placed Nico Hulkenberg.

Behind them Rosberg was told to let Hamilton through and despite his best efforts Raikkonen got by as well. It soon transpired Hamilton was no happier on mediums than he has been on softs and four laps later Raikkonen passed him too.

By lap 21 Button and Hulkenberg had pitted which promoted Raikkonen to third, albeit over ten seconds behind his team mate. Grosjean, his tyres six laps fresher than Vettel’s, had halved the Red Bull driver’s lead from over four seconds to less than two.

Grosjean’s impressive early stint had seen him emerge as an unlikely contender for victory with both the speed and the strategic edge to take the fight to Vettel. But the appearance of the Safety Car wrecked the latter advantage – and the reason for its arrival was wholly bizarre.

Unmanned Marussia causes trouble

Bianchi’s blaze brought out the Safety Car
Heading towards the Veedol chicane on lap 22 Jules Bianchi’s engine let go with a cloud of smoke and a burst of flame. Race engineer Paul Davison urged him to deploy the fire extinguisher and sprint to safety.

This he did, and the fire was quickly put out, but it left the problem of an unmanned car sat on an incline. Gravity had the inevitable effect and moments later the MR02 was freewheeling back down the hill and – alarmingly – across the track just as the leaders arrived.

The Safety Car was swiftly deployed but not before the Marussia had found its way to a rather safer position than it had been in to start with, its progress halted by an advertising board.

Most of the cars which still had drivers in them now headed for the pits. At a stroke Grosjean lost both his tactical advantage over Vettel and his time advantage over his team mate. Alonso was fourth ahead of Button and Hulkenberg.

Hamilton, who’d already made a second pit stop before the Safety Car came out, regained some of his lost time. The interruption was an even greater gift for Webber, who was allowed to rejoin the lead lap. With the benefit of a fresh set of tyres he went into the second half of the race knowing a points finish was possible.

KERS drama for Vettel

The leaders held position at the restart but on lap 34 Vettel hit trouble: his KERS had stopped working. The Lotuses drew close, the pair within 1.4 seconds of the tail of the Red Bull and both using DRS in the two zones in an attempt to make a move.

Vettel weathered the storm, adjusting his brake balance when KERS stopped working, then pressing on again when it came back. Grosjean remained close enough to use DRS but by lap 38 Raikkonen was out of range of his team mate.

Having been unable to capitalise on an opportunity to pass Vettel on the track, Lotus sprang a two-pronged strategic attack. Their best bet was always going to be to use one of their drivers to ‘undercut’ Vettel by pitting first and performing a quick out-lap. Grosjean was duly summoned in on lap 40.

This was his quickest pit stop of the race (Raikkonen had two that were fractionally quicker). But Vettel was in and out 0.4 seconds quicker when Red Bull responded on the next lap, and held his lead. At his race engineer’s urging Vettel kept his foot down as he had to ensure Raikkonen didn’t get far enough ahead to make his pit stop and come out ahead.

This was easier said than done as Vettel now had to pass other cars for position, the first of which was Hamilton. Mercedes were anxious not to compromise their own strategy by trying to race a car they couldn’t beat and warned Hamilton accordingly. “Did you say to let him past?” he asked. “Just don’t lose time holding him up,” his race engineer replied.

Hamilton didn’t make life easy for Vettel, forcing the Red Bull driver the long way around in the opening sector. But nor did he try to force this issue and Vettel made it past having lost just four-tenths of a second to Raikkonen.

Raikkonen falls short

Lotus didn’t need to bring Raikkonen into the pits and considered leaving him out. Problems with the radio frustrated their efforts to make the call, but they were able to hear Raikkonen telling them he felt happy with the tyres. Nonetheless he was brought in on lap 49. “We could see the tyre performance dropping,” explained trackside operations director Alan Permane.

Alonso came in on the same lap, the Ferrari driver finally making his mandatory switch to the soft tyres. He revelled in them at first, setting the fastest lap of the race as he rejoined the track, 0.7 seconds quicker than Raikkonen.

Raikkonen rejoined the track within four seconds of Vettel, the pair separated by Grosjean. The trio also had to negotiate a knot of backmarkers: the battling Caterhams and Max Chilton. Once that was done, Grosjean conceded to messages from his team pointing out that Raikkonen was on a different strategy – for the second race in a row he had to let his team mate past.

The soft tyres had been up to 1.5 seconds quicker than the mediums during qualifying. During a race stint some of that gain is sacrificed for longevity, but even so Lotus were disappointed to discover Raikkonen wasn’t catching Vettel as quickly as planned. “We expected slightly more performance from his final set of soft tyres,” admitted Permane.

It took until the final lap for Raikkonen to get close enough to jab his DRS button on the straight leading towards the Veedol chicane. But this was to be no repeat of Canada ’11 – Vettel held his nerve and accelerated out of the final turn to win his home race for the first time.

McLaren lose out on last lap

Grosjean was under pressure from Alonso as the final lap began, the pair separated by just seven-tenths of a second. But the Ferrari driver dropped back and immediately after taking the chequered flag brought his car to a stop. Ferrari said they had been concerned about having sufficient fuel in the car to give a sample – despite having had the opportunity to save fuel during the Safety Car period.

Button lost fifth place to Hamilton on the final lap and fumed at the lapped Caterham drivers. “When you’re fighting for position, you expect the backmarkers to move over, even if they’re fighting for position themselves,” he said having lost around one-and-a-half seconds getting past them. It was a double blow for McLaren on the last lap as Sergio Perez lost seventh place to the recovering Webber.

Paul di Resta did not pit after the Safety Car came in and struggled at the end. The Force India driver dropped out of the top ten in the final three laps, elevating Rosberg and Hulkenberg to the final points places.

After starting a promising sixth Daniel Ricciardo couldn’t find any performance on the medium tyres and never challenged for points. He was 12th while team mate Jean-Eric Vergne retired with hydraulic failure.

Pastor Maldonado had been running seventh until his final pit stop. This turned out to be one of three which went badly wrong for Williams due to sticking wheels. He finished 15th, the last driver on the lead lap, behind Adrian Sutil and Esteban Gutierrez.

The other Williams of Valtteri Bottas had two such dramas and was lapped. Charles Pic passed his team mate for 17th with two laps to go while Button fumed behind them. Chilton was the last driver running.

Red Bull the constant

Red Bull and Vettel have been a constant amid the uncertainty of recent races. Had it not been for a faulty gearbox the world champion would likely have just won his third race in a row.

It still seems the RB9 is not the dominant force its predecessors have been, nor is it as reliable as rival cars. But the combination of pin-sharp strategy and Vettel’s cool-headedness more than made up for that on a day when their closest rivals reckoned they should have won.

They are in the fortunate position of having a different rival closest to them every time: In Germany, Lotus came within a second of beating them; In Britain, Mercedes pushed them hard; In Canada, Ferrari gave chase. But it’s a fine balance and the change in tyres planned for the next race may tip it in favour of a different team.

But for now Vettel was content to revel in the delight of scoring his first home win, which he called a “great relief”.

“To race in Germany I think is a privilege – to have the ability to have a home grand prix,” he said. “I think it take some little while to sink in but yeah, just incredibly proud today.”

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2013 German Grand Prix

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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...

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79 comments on “Vettel weathers Lotus onslaught for home victory”

  1. Great gutsy drive by Vettel, it looked like he wanted that one bad enough :)

    1. +1 +1 +1

    2. put hamilton in the redbull and then tell me!!!! don’t fool yourself!!

      1. He’s the guy who called them “just a drinks company”. I doubt he’d have the relationship with the team in the first place. In any case, while LH is fast, he hasn’t been as consistent as Vettel, so I doubt he’d have made it to P1.

      2. OmarR-Pepper (@)
        8th July 2013, 17:07

        it’s probably rosberg who should deserve a shot in a Red Bull , not Lewis Whingington

  2. I used to dislike Vettel, but this year he won me over with his performance. Easily the driver of the year so far. Great consistency and admirable composure. Bravo.

    1. I told you Vettel not yet on peak age performance (28-30) and already triple course he is getting better and better.

      1. maybe if it stays the same when he’s having the best car above all the rest( u can clearly see that the lotus lacks pace otherwise raikonnen was winning this!!!!)

  3. Definitely DOTW, fantastic drive

  4. @KeithCollantine Good Summary and Wrap up race report….

    Vettel did a wonderful job all through the race. Working through the back markers and others on different strategy too.

    Want to watch more of such Strategy driven races…….

  5. Also Missing from Vettel’s Resume till date was a win in July…. He did that too today….

    An a very interesting fact to note is that this is his first win in Europe after Italy 2011……. that was like almost 2 years back…. Goes on to say how strong the Red Bull is on the Non European Circuits…..

    1. That is a very interesting fact. I would never have thought it was that long ago.

      1. Well he almost won last sunday, and back in 2012 in Valencia. Both times mechanical failure prevent it

    2. the red bull cars are designed for the tilkedromes and if ferrari are not winning enough european races / not finishing ahead of the red bulls (and lotus), it’s gonna be game over soon…

  6. For the life of me, I cannot understand WHY Merc told hamilton not to hold Vettel up. For christ´s sake, it´s a race! SV should have to fight for every position he gains. This “don´t fight him because we´re not racing him” mentality is just dumb. Hamilton should´ve just stuck to his guns no matter what, it was still a place further up than what he would´ve gotten in the end if he would´ve kept him behind!
    Such a farce! Sickening…

    1. There have been a few races this year when Hamilton’s flat-spotted his tyres picking a fight he didn’t need to be in.

      If he’d done that here, he probably wouldn’t have taken 5th on the last lap.

    2. @karter22, I agree, although I didn’t get the impression Hamilton yielded easily. If he could have held up Vettel for a lap or two, he would have lost Vettel the victory, which could be good in case they are still fighting for first position in the WDC.

    3. @karter22 I don’t like the situation they were put in but it’s a consequence of the way the sport is at the moment.

      DRS makes overtaking so easy that Mercedes knew Hamilton stood no realistic chance of keeping Vettel behind. If Hamilton had wasted another second or so fighting Vettel he would not have been able to pass Button for fifth place on the last lap.

      The “dumb mentality” you criticise gained Mercedes and Hamilton an extra two points.

  7. Is it just me, or have the first corners of the races been really clean this season? I can only think of one incident at Silverstone involving Webber, and that didn’t end his race.

  8. Ferrari really outsmarted themselves. If not for the SC they would have been totally out of the picture. If they had qualified on 4th and 5th or so on a normal strategy, they would have been in the mix. Ferrari’s resort to this nonsense shows 1. that they have given up on racing with RBR, unlike Mercedes, who keeps giving it the old try and 2. that Mercedes is effectively tail-gunning for Vettel now because they basically put any other rival on to the 3rd or 4th row.

    Also what the heck happened to Massa? It’s been a long time since I’ve seen a driver spin on plain old tarmac all by himself and stall the car.

    1. @dmw

      If not for the SC they would have been totally out of the picture.

      I’m not sure – Lotus were on the strategy you’re advocating with Raikkonen and he was not in a great position before the Safety Car either. Alonso had been behind him up until then (and qualified behind Raikkonen on the same tyres at Silverstone) so I’m not sure Ferrari had any obviously better alternatives.

    2. bro didn’t u see he had a gearbox failure!!!!

  9. jsw11984 (@jarred-walmsley)
    8th July 2013, 5:01

    Is there going to be any repercussions for Marussia over the roll away car? Seems to me to be just as if not more dangerous than an unsafe pit release

    1. @jarred-walmsley There’s no indication they will be and Bianchi did what he was supposed to under the regulations:

      A driver who abandons a car must leave it in neutral or with the clutch disengaged, with the KERS shut down and with the steering wheel in place.
      Sporting Regulations article 30.5

      Remember also the car was on fire when he stopped and the team were telling him to evacuate!

      When a driver stops it is the marshals’ responsibility to ensure their car is safely recovered:

      If a car stops on the track it shall be the duty of the marshals to remove it as quickly as possible so that its presence does not constitute a danger or hinder other competitors.
      Sporting Regulations article 30.4

      1. jsw11984 (@jarred-walmsley)
        8th July 2013, 11:35

        Oh, I completely agree, but you never know with the FIA do you?

      2. I was going to say, surely its the Marshall’s responsibility to ensure the car is secured – they had time enough to do it.

      3. Bianchi even walked back to the car after the fire was put out to put the steering wheel in properly.

  10. The unsafe release and Marussia rolling across the track is just baffling, especially so close to the recent tragedy of a field marshal killed. I think it was incredible luck that more people didn’t get hurt. Also, that whole Marussia situation followed by the uneccessary long SC period has basically decided the race, throwing all the strategies away.

    1. I am not sure that the driverless car was such a huge problem. It was going quite slowly, and it was visible from quite a way back on the track so the drivers would have been able to take avoiding action. And so Vettel did.

  11. I think that last paragraph “Red Bull the constant” sums up this season perfectly.

    All the other teams are tripping over each other. Lotus have been inconsistent, Ferrari have made some poor strategy decisions, Mercedes haven’t managed a good race pace, Mclaren went the wrong way and designed a brand new car.

    Red Bull didn’t have to do anything different. Well deserved lead of both the championships.

    1. F1 is a roller-coaster these days, the only sure thing is Red Bull and Vettel will always be fighting for win, no matter where, when or even weather. RB9 is the best car all-around and they have a good pair of drivers, particularly Sebastian Vettel.

      Ferrari needs to fix their quali pace and Lotus must sort out their dependency on hot days just like Mercedes is still yet to find the formula to properly operate when it’s hot. Let’s hope new tyres bunch them up a bit more.

      1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
        8th July 2013, 8:42


        Best team by a mile. This must be hurting Hamilton so bad that a guy who has not won much on lower formulae is a 3 time champion. I wish Hamilton was in a RBR.

        I’ve actually made a decision that if Vettel wins another championship after 2013 i’ll quit f1.

        1. (@full-throttle-f1)

          I’ve actually made a decision that if Vettel wins another championship after 2013 i’ll quit f1.

          Same. The unfurirating thing is that some people, and Vettel himself obviously, actually think he’s think he’s the best of the grid. The RB9 (and the RB8…and the RB7) are making F1 a farce, just like the early 2000s.

          1. @sgt-pepper The scale of performance advantage Webber and Vettel enjoyed at Red Bull even in the peak year of 2011 is dwarfed by other examples from recent history.

            If the RB8 ‘made a farce’ of F1 then what did the MP4-27, which was faster than it, do?

        2. Anele (@anele-mbethe)
          8th July 2013, 10:22

          He was fast tracked into formula one because of his obvious talent and hence breaking most youngest record. I’m a fan of Hamilton but realty is he has aways been at a top team that produced race winning car. His and team errors are the reason for his apparent lack of success, though 1 world championship is something to be proud of.

        3. Hamliton BEGGED to get Mark’s seat after Canada 2011 and again last year, but Red Bull considered him not a safe investment and decided to stick with Vettel. I think people who put their money where their mouth is should know a thing or two more on who is a more deserved driver to be in a race winning car. The biggest problem of Hamilton is his sense of entitlement: he has this delusional ego that worked for him to make a name against a two time champion but is rather hurting him afterwards (case in point was his blatant lie after Australia 2009 to the stewards which stripped him of his 3rd place once his lie was discovered).

        4. @full-throttle-f1

          This must be hurting Hamilton so bad that a guy who has not won much on lower formulae is a 3 time champion.

          Good. Lewis has had competitive cars for all of his career as well. While he’s done a great job himself, Vettel has clearly developed faster and better as a driver since seven years ago. Plus, Vettel was leading the 2007 World Series by Renault when he got calle dup to F1.

  12. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
    8th July 2013, 8:48

    Anyone else think that Marussia looks sooo good?

    1. They need to put one a flame decal! Looked great!

      1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
        8th July 2013, 11:26


        yep it would look great!

  13. Lotus did the sensible thing by giving Kimi the edge in the strategy, but I personally thought Romain had a better chance. Hindsight helping me here a bit, but also going on softs for 13 laps was Romain’s joker, he should have stayed out until lap 50 and then come in to change for softs, and attack Seb!
    Had Seb stayed until lap 50 on mediums, he would also have a much slower pace by then with his car chewing rubber faster that Romain’s, thus falling back into the healthier Lotus’ clutches. If he changed tyres at 45 laps for example, he would’ve definitely used mediums again – in both scenarios a clear advantage for Grosjean. But lotus opted to give Kimi a shot using Romain as bait, a good strategy but not the best IMO.

  14. In 2012, I personally felt that Seb didn’t deserved the title as much as Fernando to the point where I was considering him ‘lucky’ to win it.

    Come 2013, Seb has driven better than drivers like Fernando and Kimi. As rightly mentioned, the RB9 is not at the peak of typical Red Bull dominant cars but through efficient team work (seriously, RB deserves credit) whether it is the strategic gameplay or pitstops they have been far better than any team and Seb has been faultless all through. His least scoring position is 4th and that speaks a lot about his consistency. If he does win the 2013 title, I really won’t have any doubts over that.

    1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
      8th July 2013, 10:30

      I would put seb on a Kimi sort of level for talent. But the RBR boys deserve some credit (and i’m not just talkin’ Newey). Mercedes have proved that too many cooks kinda don’t spoil the broth but RBR have shown that just a few working in harmony can produce a Michelin star team.

    2. Agreed! Alonso deserved 2012 more than Vettel. And Vettel is rightfully leading the 2013 championship as well.

      I personally feel that the true champions for WDCs (of past years) should have been
      2013 – Vettel (so far)
      2012 – Alonso
      2011 – Vettel
      2010 – Hamilton
      2009 – Button
      2008 – Massa
      2007 – Hamilton
      2006 – Alonso
      2005 – Raikkonen

      We would have then had Alonso, Hamilton, Vettel as three 2-time WDCs and Button, Kimi, Massa as three 1-time WDCs in 2014.

      1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
        8th July 2013, 10:37


        That would be my list as well. Perhaps Webber in 2010?

        1. Gilles in 79 and Hill in 94!

          1. Benetton cheating aside, Schumacher was also banned for a few races due to miscommunication at Silverstone and the spin at Spa. Had that not happened, he would have won the title sooner. Hill did good in 94 but not better than Schumacher, imo.

          2. senna 1989!!!! anyone!!!!

          3. @nick.

            Hill clearly did better than schumacher in 94 as the only way schumacher won was because he purposefully took hill out of the race! Something I think he should have been banned for good for doing….

        2. He was weaker than Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton.

    3. Michael Brown (@)
      8th July 2013, 18:25

      Alonso was a lot luckier than Vettel was last year.

      1. In my opinion, he wasn’t but these are personal opinions so I respect that.

  15. It seems to me that Fernando has to retire from Ferrari after the end of 2014. I don’t believe that he can achieve anything in red livery. And, moreover, he isn’t consistent at all in this championship. Terrible year for Alonso, terrible year for his team.
    I think even if Ferrari won the first 5 races it wouldn’t help them to win the WDC. They lose again and again, they have a lot of troubles both strategic and technical. Apparently, they have not any problems with the wind tunnel but with their minds.
    After first 20 laps of Nurburgring I was fed up with their race pace and stopped watching. In 2009 Alonso made a huge mistake when signed a contract with Ferrari.
    Also this year reminds me 2006, when Schumi was fighting against Alonso and lost because of inconsistency. Now we have another champion who defeats any other racer (though there will never happen that I esteem Vettel as a man and as a racer). Anyway, for me the strive in 20013 is over. I will watch some races but see no reason in it. Obviously, I’ve become too much a fan of the F1.

    1. @slava He’s only 34 points behind with 250 available. Drivers have recovered larger deficits (than 1.36 wins) in less time than that.

      The Red Bull car and team have been less reliable than Ferrari and we’re about to have a complete overhaul of the tyres. There’s still a long way to go.

      1. For a blogger thats a really myopic opinion if one team has handled all the tyres well its redbull even at barcelona which was the worst deg they finished 4th also you think Alonso is gonna out-qualify Vettel this season? How has the Ferrari been more reliable than the redbull both have one reliability problem a piece and Vettel is always stronger in the second half of the season.

        1. I sad the car and team have been less reliable. Red Bull are the ones sending cars out of the pit boxes without all four wheels fully attached. Red Bull’s tendency towards greater unreliability than Ferrari isn’t new – we saw it last season as well.

          And who really knows what effect the change in tyres in a few weeks’ time is going to have. I don’t consider that a “myopic” view, just a more open-minded one than yours – or at least one that’s less fatalistic about Ferrari’s chances.

          you think Alonso is going to out-qualify Vettel this season

          I didn’t say that. But he already has in previous races. And others – Australia and Spain, for example – showed he doesn’t necessarily have to.

          Above all, Ferrari are an extremely good team and I wouldn’t write them off. Silverstone showed how easily things can change even on a weekend that isn’t going especially well for them.

          1. I think its funny you think only Redbull can be affected by reliability issues and you say that you are being open-minded above all you mention Silverstone well didn’t Vettel regain the lost points at Silverstone back at the ring? Also what stops the Ferrari from breaking down in Hungary as according to your reply only redbull’s reliability can bring Ferrari back in.

          2. @rockie –

            I think its funny you think only Redbull can be affected by reliability issues and you say that you are being open-minded above all you mention Silverstone well didn’t Vettel regain the lost points at Silverstone back at the ring?

            Well, Red Bull have been shown to have reliability issues, especially on Vettel’s side. And no, Vettel didn’t “regain” the lost points from Silverstone. They are gone forever. He had a 36 point lead before Silverstone and still hasn’t got the gap equal or above that.

  16. Top class race from Vettel he really earned that win. Ferrari need to start sorting things out they have gone backwards in terms of development and allwed the oher teams to get ahead. Unfortunately it looks like the world title is going to escape Alonso’s grasp again. He probably wont win another title in his career. Such a shame.

    1. Too early for such defeatism, let’s not forget that if James Allison joins during the summer break, that “big step” Alonso needs might just happen.

      1. I see your point Makana and I want to believe that Alonso can win. He might be able to claw it all back like 2010 but RBR weren’t the 3 times world champs they are now. If he is still within a race wn of Vettel after Monza he has a glimmer of hope but Vettel is mighty in Asia. Alonso will have to be imperious. But if he takes it to Brazl then anything can happen, 13 pts after Texas he lost by 3 in Brazil. He can do it but he needs help from Ferrari, lets hope James Allison can bring it.

        1. guys, what the heck are u talking about, today it’s a car’s race, not drivers, and alonso isn’t taking on vettel week in week out is that his car is out of pace, and technically behind also, alonso can own vettel any day!! vettel is just as lucky to be in a well rounded redbull team from all aspects.

          1. Ah, what a shame. Here I was thinking Alonso did a great job winning Spanish Grand Prix, but apparently it was all a car’s race. I guess no credit for Fred then.

          2. Drivers will and always have made a difference. When its crunch time in a championship the car doesn’t have a mental strength the driver does and its the driver that wins the title.

          3. OmarR-Pepper (@)
            8th July 2013, 17:27

            @mnmracer hahaha +111111

  17. Chris (@tophercheese21)
    8th July 2013, 11:51

    Hence forth, I shall be referring pluraly to the Lotuses as; Loti.
    (Pronounced: Low – Tie).

    Sounds better. Lol.

    1. I like that, I’m gonna join you and say it as well.

  18. let’s get something straight, vettel won’t be among the legends of the sport until he shows that he win starting from a low position,he’s lucky his 3 winning seasons passed by while redbull having an upper hand on all aspects,either the pace, tyre management during races,aerodynamics,reliability and when having a same level performance car with the others!! that’s a fact.

    1. Your ‘facts’ are mere fiction.

      – Do you know how many championships F1 racing legend Juan Manuel Fangio won in the best car? Fact: 5
      – Do you know how many races and championships F1 racing legend Jim Clark won without a decent team-mate? Fact: 5 races and 0 championships.
      – Do you know how few races F1 racing legend Ayrton Senna (yes, the same one as your avatar) won from a low position? Fact: 39 out of 40.

      1. Vettel is one of the sports greats already, but if he went and did something no one else could do he’d be the greatest of this generation but not yet that in my opinion is Alonso.

        1. OmarR-Pepper (@)
          8th July 2013, 17:35

          @m0nzaman Vettel IS the greatest of his generation, as Alonso belongs to a”different generation” along with Kimi, Webber and Massa.
          Vettel is in the Di Resta, Hamilton, Hulkenberg “generation”

        2. OmarR-Pepper (@)
          8th July 2013, 17:37

          if he went and did something no one else could do

          @m0nzaman can you specify? Lick his elbow maybe? walk on water?

  19. we are at a point when it’s rediculous how much the redbull has the pace and grip with used medium tyres that still manage them to keep the pace with a car that has soft compound, raikonnen was only managing a 0.2 seconds faster lap!!! he was sweeping every drop of the lotus to do that also, and u tell me it isn’t a car’s race now.

    1. Lucas Wilson (@full-throttle-f1)
      8th July 2013, 12:40

      Cars race, like it has always been. Looked at your profile and it says you’ve been watching since 1996, so you must have thought it was a cars race during the shumacher years?

    2. @ramysennaf1 – Yet Grosjean on the same type of tyre as Vettel seemed to keep up with both Raikkonen and Vettel.

  20. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    8th July 2013, 13:35

    For me the most important event of yesterday’s race was Rosberg’s successful attempt to slow down Hamilton and deny Mercedes P1 while trying to relegate him to P3.

    It was a lot worse than Alonso’s pit stop antics in 2007…

    After Hamilton boxed on lap 7 he came out behind Rosberg but Rosberg would not give him quarter until lap 14 allowing Raikonnen to catch up to Hamilton and almost pass him. After Hamilton passed him, Raikonnen quickly got by and pressed after Hamilton. Rosberg didn’t even move to stop Raikonnen as he bid him “good luck” in his pursuit of Hamilton.

    Then Rosberg himself boxed 1-2 laps later which rendered all this pointless. Meanwhile, Hamilton was wondering why Rosberg was holding him back and Mercedes even had to tell Rosberg that Hamilton was not in the same race and he should let him by. Yet Rosberg continued to block Hamilton after the team orders and Hamilton had to perform an almost adversarial pass against Rosberg crossing into the pit exit lane…

    The bigger problem with this is that Rosberg did NOT know whether Mercedes were still fighting for P1 at the moment. Seeing a teammate deny his team a potential victory intentionally at their home GP is the absolute lowest I’ve seen a driver sink.

    Shame on you Nico!

    1. You reading too much into it. I myself was expecting a hard fight from Nico, but after seeing him compare to Lotus, that Merc had literally zero traction. Good luck breaking hard with that only to skate out moments later.

  21. I believe Vettel is performing at a higher level this year than even 2011, his most dominant year in F1 till now

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