Sebastian Vettel admitted the two car failures he’s suffered in the last nine days have “hurt”.
Ferrari confirmed a spark plug failure caused his retirement shortly after the start of today’s Japanese Grand Prix. One week ago in Malaysia he was unable to take part in qualifying due to another problem with his power unit.
“Of course it hurts and we’re all disappointed,” Vettel told the media at Suzuka during the race. “But now I think the best is to get back, get some rest, go flat out for the last four races and see what happens.”
“It’s normal you’re critical, especially when things go wrong,” he added. “So it’s part of our job.”
“I think I need to protect them. We’ve done an incredible job so far, obviously bitter the last two races with the reliability issues. But it’s like that sometimes.”
Lewis Hamilton extended his championship lead by winning in Japan and can clinch the title at the next round. Vettel is now 59 points behind with up to 100 available over the remaining races.
“We still have a chance this year,” said Vettel. “Obviously it’s not as much in our control as we would like.”
“But overall I think the team is in a good way. I think we are improving race by race, I think we’ve got a lot further than people thought. There’s also some positives but for now you don’t look at positives because it’s not a day to look at positives.”