Vettel hails ‘great recovery’ after climb to third

2015 United States Grand Prix lap charts

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Sebastian Vettel said third place was about as good as he could have expected having started from 13th on the grid.

Having started 13th on the grid due to a grid penalty the Ferrari driver made up six places in the first lap alone, putting him on course for a podium finish.

“Today it was another great race, a great recovery and the car was fantastic,” said Vettel. “I think you can’t ask for more if you start from P13.”

“A good first lap helped a lot and after that we had the pace, especially changing to the dry tyres in mixed conditions. We seemed to fly for a few laps, a couple of seconds quicker than everybody else.”

Vettel gambled on a switch to medium tyres when the Safety Car came out in the middle of the race and could have been in a position to jump ahead of the Mercedes pair had there not been further interruptions later on.

“Maybe without the last Safety Car we could have won the race,” he said, “but if ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ were candy and nuts…”

However he felt he could have given Nico Rosberg a harder time for second place on the last lap. “Maybe I should have taken more of a risk with Nico,” he said, “but it was not possible.”

2015 United States Grand Prix lap chart

The positions of each driver on every lap. Scroll to zoom, drag to pan, click name to highlight, right-click to reset:

2015 United States Grand Prix race chart

The gaps between each driver on every lap compared to the leader’s average lap time. Scroll to zoom, drag to pan, click name to highlight, right-click to reset:

2015 United States 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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28 comments on “Vettel hails ‘great recovery’ after climb to third”

  1. Vettel’s the man. He’s going to bring it to Mercedes next year.

    1. Hope so, Ferrari need to kick on for next year, not have a 2011-esque slump.

    2. “if ‘ifs’ and ‘buts’ were candy and nuts…”

      LOL Is that really a thing or did he just made that up?

      The (crystal) ball one was funny as well. He’s hilarious to listen to.

      1. He does seem rather more open and friendly now he’s at Maranello

        1. He’s always had the same attitude. The way he handled his 4 WDC’s at his age was mind-blowing. You can expect it to continue.

          1. Dunno what’s with the public reaction like he’s changed all of a sudden. I’ve been watching both Vettel and Hamilton since they started racing and he’s been pretty much the same kid, teenager, young, adult etc. Especially compared to Hamilton, he’s older but exactly the same.

          2. Benny, he’s wearing red now. Makes people magically change their mind on things.

          3. Or maybe our memories last for more than a minute.

  2. Well I hail you too man. Great drive.
    He could have won the race at one point….

  3. Vettel is definitely better than Leiws IMHO.
    When he switched to mediums I was hoping he woulda won the race.
    And he’s more matured and humble than the so called diva.
    He gets my vote for DOTD and hope he sticks it up to Merc next year.

    1. Is that is the total summary of your proof that “Vettel is better than Lewis”? Wow! But then again, it is your opinion, and you have a right to it.

      1. @kbdavies Is it ok if I agree with him as well? just checking with you to make sure ;)

    2. Can someone tell me if I’m wrong because I’ve only followed f1 the last few years but Hamilton out performed alonso in 2007 (rookie year) then alonso went on to closely challenge vettel in inferior machinery. Point being it doesn’t take a genius to see that saying vettel is better has no ground whatsoever. We won’t know until they are in the same car. Simple.

      1. He could challenge in a slightly slower but more reliable car, yes.

  4. @keithcollantine I don’t know if it’s just me but I can’t get used to the new lap times chart. It is hard to compare the times for only a few drivers because it’s not possible anymore to choose to show only the times of those drivers you want to compare. The highlight option doesn’t really help as it is only driver that can be highlighted.

    Would it be hard to reimplement this feature?

    1. Agreed, I rarely use the new ones.

    2. I liked the old race chart where the leader was always on ‘zero’, along the bottom. Miss that feature more than the selecting driver options (though I do miss that as well).

      1. @neilosjames: that’s another thing I really miss – the old chart was so useful if you wanted to look at the gap evolution between drivers, gap to the lead, …

        I mean, I consider myself to be reasonably capable to interpreting graphs and charts, but the above chart reads “The gaps between each driver on every lap compared to the leader’s average lap time. “, and I have no idea why I would want to relate the gaps between drivers to the leader’s average lap time.

    3. Agreed. It’s been a few races but I am not liking them still. Keith, hope you are reading these messages.

      And I am browsing on phone, so not sure how this new layout is phone or tablet friendly either.

    4. @xtwl @neilosjames Thanks for the feedback. For several technical reasons the old charts had to be replaced. Although the new ones are currently missing one feature which the previous style had, they do offer many other features the previous ones did not have (zooming, panning, proper scaling for mobile screens, etc…). I do intend to reinstate the ability to toggle the lines but at the moment I can’t say when that’s going to happen.

      Incidentally I use these charts often when I’m writing other articles to compare drivers’ lap times side-by-side and using the zoom and hover functions I find it easier than by toggling names using the old-style charts.

      The only reason the charts were changed to average time was because other people had asked me to do so previously. As far as I’m concerned it shows the same data with little difference so I don’t really care either way. It would be useful to get an indication of how many people prefer the charts each way and then we can stick with that (and no, I’m not doing both!)

      1. @keithcollantine well, thanks already to respond to this. I’m happy to learn that the toggles will be back one day – that’s good enough for me already.

      2. I’ll put my +1 down for the ‘leader at zero along the bottom’ style (old style).

        And of course I really should add a thanks for providing the charts, regardless of style!

      3. @keithcollantine Nice to hear, I did miss the toggle function as well. I also missed the old style – but in this instance, this graph is very good for showing how the cars sped up over the race distance! It’s also very clear for when there were SC/VSC/pitting.

  5. It was a great drive, but I wonder why Ferrari decided to change PUs without using any tokens. Who knows what could have happened had he started 5th instead of 13th.

    1. I think he would of finished 3rd as the safety cars re started the race with him behind the Mercs so the race had been re set.

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