Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Spa-Francorchamps, 2018

Angry radio message due to “miscommunication”, says Vettel

2018 Belgian Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel admitted he was “not as calm as I can be” after swearing at his team on the radio during the frantic, rain-hit qualifying session at Spa.

Vettel along with most of the other runners dived into the pits to switch from slick to intermediate tyres during the session. As Ferrari pushed Vettel’s car into the pits to refuel he was heard on the radio warning them not to damage its floor.

“Stop, stop! You will crash the floor,” shouted Vettel. “Fuck!

“Lift the car up, for fuck’s sake! You’re scratching the floor, you’re scratching the floor.”

Afterwards Vettel said the team “had a wobble, obviously.”

“I guess everybody had in these conditions, swapping tyres. I think there was a bit of miscommunication, I was stuck in the pit lane for a while. In the end that didn’t matter but it was just not as calm as I think it could have been.

Vettel said there was a lot of “confusion” during the session. “When all of a sudden it starts to rain like this, from a team point of view you have to manage two cars and Kimi [Raikkonen] was rushing to get back out and then in the end, now you look, it’s sunshine and it’s nearly dry again.

“I didn’t also know what to do, I had a bit of traffic, then I had the track drying up and I wanted to save a bit of tyres, and I had a bit of traffic with Esteban in front, and then you know that any lap could be the lap but equally you know the lap will be at the end if it continues to dry up.”

Ferrari didn’t put enough fuel in Raikkonen’s car for him to set a time when the conditions were at their best. Vettel did take on enough fuel, but he ran into trouble with his battery.

“The way we set up normally it was fine to run until the end but I surprised myself when I crossed the line and saw that the battery was quite low – which then was very costly.

“In the end we should have managed better as a team but in these conditions, could have been a red flag in the last lap and then it doesn’t matter. I always try to open a gap in the last sector, last corner and slow down, charge the car – but obviously it wasn’t enough for the end, so we got caught up.”

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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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11 comments on “Angry radio message due to “miscommunication”, says Vettel”

  1. OH? “Afterwards Vettel said the team “had a wobble, obviously.”
    LMBO!!!! SeeBashem at his usual tantrum, shifit, rsclown, nasty piece of work best AGAIN!!
    Not a “wobble” !!!!

    1. If I may redirect you to the post-race interview/conference after the Bahrain GP. Go have a listen

    2. You do realise the irony of your rant? @wildbiker

      Besides, every single top driver has shouted at their teams on multiple occasions, at least he explained himself.

  2. Battery issue was the only serious issue with consequences perhaps (although gap was probably too much for battery to compensate anyway). They had enough fuel, Vettel had plenty of laps, he had track ahead of him and not too much traffic and most importantly he was I think the last one over the line so had the best track conditions. He just didn’t put it together.

  3. He is absolutely right to complain about such an issue. If the Ferrari had damaged the bodywork of the diffusor, it would have had implication on the qualifying and more importantly the race due to Parc Fermé. It’s quite embarassing for the Ferrari mechanics to be not as quick thinking as their racing driver.

    1. @xenomorph91, under the Parc Fermé regulations, the teams are still allowed to make repairs to the cars provided that they are using the same specification part and that the repairs are witnessed by an official from the FIA.

      According to the FIA’s list of parts replaced in Parc Fermé, Haas actually changed the entire floor on Magnussen’s car after qualifying, whilst on a smaller scale Williams and McLaren both replaced one of the stays that supports the floor.

      Whilst it is true that any damage to the floor might have hampered Vettel in qualifying, the team could have repaired that damage in Parc Fermé and wouldn’t have had to carry it through into the race.

  4. Vettel should hear how rude other drivers are on the radio, especially Hamilton and Alonso.

    Hammy almost sneers at Bono.

  5. Can’t believe there are no set procedures for this. Another Ferrari team messup.

    Raikkonen was a likely pole candidate.

    1. Every team has procedures for every conceivable situation. However there are sometimes many dozens of complex interacting factors, conditions that are changing by the second and input from dozens of individuals (at the track and the factory) happening all at once.

      In the end though, there are humans who are making the calls and doing the work, they aren’t perfect and sometimes make mistakes.

  6. How sweet how other drivers get away with from prudish fanatical fans. I know a driver if he had uttered such expletives in same sitution, we going to be told how ungrateful he is, that he does not respect the thousands of employees at the factory, and that he is where he is because of the racing cars provided to him, as if there was ever was any race driver, who succeeded without a capable car. We were going to be told, how this driver deserve another ounce of hate, and if he fails its him, and if he excel is his car. Welcome to F1 fans hypocrisy.

    1. What expletives???! What an exaggeration lol. On the contrary it seems Vettel has to apologize even for raising his voice unlike all other drivers.

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