Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Sochi Autodrom, 2018

Title destiny ‘not in our hands”, admits Vettel

2018 Russian Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel admits he is no longer in control of whether he can win the Formula 1 drivers’ championship this year but believes he can still keep Mercedes rival Lewis Hamilton under pressure.

Vettel’s third-placed finish in Russia, while Hamilton scored his fifth win in six races, means Hamilton could finish second to Vettel in all the remaining races and still win the title.

“Obviously it’s not entirely in our hands,” said Vettel after the race. “We need a bit of something to happen.

“But we need to make sure that we are always there so if it’s a third we can get it, if it’s a win we need to get that.

“It’s maybe unfortunately not any more entirely in our hands but I still think that if we win the next races then we can put a lot of pressure on them, make something happen. That’s what we need to focus on. It’s not easy but I believe if everything goes well we have a fair chance.”

Vettel got ahead of Hamilton during the race but was then passed by the Mercedes. The stewards investigated Vettel’s defensive moves but ruled his driving had been legal.

Vettel said he tried to make it clear to Hamilton he was not going to surrender the inside line for the corner.

“I saw him coming very late, obviously it’s difficult to see in the mirrors. And then I tried to move to make clear that I am going to the inside, if you want to go somewhere go on the other side.

“Obviously he had quite a bit more speed at that time so maybe he was a bit surprised but there was no intention to irritate.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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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  • 36 comments on “Title destiny ‘not in our hands”, admits Vettel”

    1. This year’s tittle will be won purely on driver skill.
      Im not a big fan of Lewis but nobody can deny that he has been faultless all year.

      Vettel on the other hand has made rookie mistakes a few too many times.

      1. Yep. It is all i’ll say.

    2. He had control of it during the first half of the season. I don’t know what happened yesterday with him locking up after Ferrari took advantage of Mercedes being so inattentive during the pit stops.

      1. What happened was, he came under pressure from the HAMmer and that’s not the sort of pressure he wants to deal with

    3. Vettel seems relieved that the fight is over. Really strange.

      He was in a much lighter mood than in Singapore.

      1. I think he’s accepted it. You can see with it his not-so-aggressive driving style

      2. Well before Singapore we all thought Ferrari had a marginally better car. That is not the case anymore.

    4. Yeah you screwed your self seb you had this until you ended your hopes in Germany…. I’m a great fan and of seb but I feel Germany and monza was were he lost it all.. Kimi should have let him past too turn 1 since he was clearly fighting for the championship title… Oh well Seb vs Charles Lecler next season Hamiton 5 time world champion

      1. You can clearly make compsrison between Ferrari and Mercedes tactics.
        I like Toti Wolff tactic.
        In Mercedes it is very well known that Lewis is driver number one and his helper is Bottas.
        But Ferrari concept of game is loss in the space and reality.
        After one Seb’s mistake in Germany, Ferrari made such confusion regarding drivers that everybody hailed Kimi and, yes, too much Italian team is losing.
        Maurizio deserves to lose and whole Ferrari deserve too lose.
        Like wind, changable.
        Now I understand why Sebastian wanted ti sign contract only for one year with Ferrari.
        Ferrari is destrying Seb as a racer, driver and his self cinfidence is ruined.
        Cristian Horner, come to Ferrari …

        1. Now I understand why Sebastian wanted ti sign contract only for one year with Ferrari.
          Ferrari is destrying Seb as a racer, driver and his self cinfidence is ruined.
          Cristian Horner, come to Ferrari …

          Vettel fans are ridiculous. Ferrari gave him everything he needed. #1 driver status with a compliant #2 driver championship winning cars for 2 seasons in a row. How on earth could you say that Ferrari didn’t give Vettel everything he needed to win a championship? Vettel couldn’t take pole at Monza and he couldn’t get by Kimi on lap 1… Similar to how Lewis didn’t take pole this weekend and didn’t lead Bottas in to turn 1. How is that indicative of anything?

          Personally, I didn’t think Vettel was really good enough to win a closely fought championship. He had a strong team and a strong machinery advantage when he won his 4 championships. When the going gets tough, seb gets sent packing.

      2. Why should Kim have let him past after they had just told him they were not signing him for next year , that very weekend in Monza?

    5. I think Seb could be aside Hamilton now in the championship if he had capitalised in the window of Germany to Italy. Those four races showed that Ferrari was 0.1-0.2 sec but he managed to win only one of them. Winning the title is pretty unlikely, since Merc has the fastest car now and Lewis is on fire. His last two races have been pretty good to be honest given he hasn’t taken risks like he did in Monza but it is too late at the moment. They could win the WCC but that would require a might effort from Kimi as well.

    6. Look at Mercedes, they didn’t give Hamilton the least at turn one because it was too risky and Hamilton himself didn’t try to force the situation. Better could have waited a few laps at Monza.

    7. Fudge Kobayashi (@)
      1st October 2018, 15:13

      Vettel appears strangely at peace with being a beaten man. Coupled with his teammate of choice being overlooked from next season I do wonder if he’s starting to think of life beyond F1.

      1. @ftruth – Maybe Vettel’s logic is: 2016, not so close. 2017, closer. 2018, really close. 2019? Mine!

        1. The problem is, I was convinced the 2018 ferrari had a better chance than the 2017 until midway into the season, but look now: 50 points behind, it’s very resemblant of 2017 late season, and ended up 46 behind and with only 5 wins.

          There’s only 5 races left and we better hope ferrari can win at least 2 or it’s gonna be very hard to say they, as a whole team, overall improved their challenge to mercedes!

    8. Looking at the rolling averages for this season, Hamilton should clinch the title in Mexico. That’s if both he and Vettel continue scoring at about the same rate as they have been over the whole season.

      If Hamilton comes in third with Vettel first at all five remaining races, they tie – but Vettel would win with more 1st position scores.

      If Hamilton continues scoring at his season average but he has three DNFs in the following five races, he would still win against Vettel’s projected scoring rate, but it’s very close. If Hamilton DNFs it’s more likely that Vettel will score much better than his average so that would point to a narrow championship win by Vettel.

      It’s not over, but the ways for Vettel to pull it out of the bag are decreasing…

      1. Mercedes provocations at the beginning of the season after Vettel’s victories, constant inquires to check reasons for their speed, FIA screening system installed in Ferrari, cheking of ice bags on cameras were actual reason why I hate Wolff, Hamilton Mercedes. These are their dirty jobs. Very dirty tricks. When I read your comments, I found out that ache in my sole because of Injustice.
        Whole season Mercedes was involved in dirty action, dirty job against Ferrari.
        Now, they are calm because they have dominant car, driver who complained against Vettel in Russia AGAIN, because they achieved what they wanted.
        Races are not intresting in the end at all.
        Again, I will hate them always, appart from poor Bottas.
        And Ferrari keeps silent. 2007 is repeated again. Mercedes has been always stealing documents from Ferrari.
        What is James Allison doing? He is changing sides.. nice..in the middle of the season. So toto is happy. Fuj
        Ma, shame on Mercedes, in the end.
        I would have been ASHAMED if I had achieved WDC in such way.
        Hamilton is happy. How does Bottas feel now?
        I cannot but tell the truth.
        Such pressure put on Seb and Ferrari, rock could not stand.
        I am unhapoy and I am not satisfied with competition 2018, with Mercedes, with the job performed by FIA.

        1. Go get a life and stop whining. Like seriously. If you want to talk justice, start by talking about Ferrari being given more money at the end of each season than any other team, FOR NO REASON. McLaren scandal you are referring to and NOT Mercedes. Each team can inquire and that is not wrong, in fact, when Merc was dominating, all people were complaining, oh and u wonder where did all this Ferrari advantage disappeared, i tell u, were they doing something illegal and now they can’t?

          1. RASHID BIN HASAN
            2nd October 2018, 5:25

            Spot on buddy

        2. Is it MIA, or just HIA? Not quite sure

        3. You must be feeling relieved since you haven’t won a WDC in any way.
          BTW the documents (including the race strategy handbook) Mercedes are stealing must be Ferrari’s original and only copies because since 2014 Ferrari is unable to match Mercedes performance. Shame on Mercedes for hiring Michael Schumacher only to get the combination code to the Maranello’s office lock from him so it can steal Ferrari’s documents.

        4. Delicious Ferrari tears.

        5. Stop crying man. Ferrari tried every dodgy trick in the book to win this year. Unexplained puffs of smoke when they left the pits.. Unnecessarily complex electrical system that had ‘no performance advantage’… An extremely close ‘partnership’ with Haas.. Etc. They basically were the only team on the grid to have a B team and a C team.

          They did everything they could and still came up short on Mercedes. Bitter pill to swallow I’m sure. Maybe they should to hire better drivers if they want to win.

        6. @Bebana – I’m sorry you feel that way. There is a reason why Ferrari keeps silent – they know the rules much better than we do. They have no grounds for complaint, notwithstanding your long list of gripes. Similarly, those who criticise Ferrari have found little or nothing substantive to hold against them – again, no action taken against Ferrari.

    9. We all can analyse, remember, critic whom we do not like.
      We can wish something from the bottoms of our hearts. It is human.
      But, we all are only human beings.
      God wish only matters.

      1. You are the absolute embodiment of Ferrari. Disgraceful arrogance personified. But you crack on… it’s giving us all a damn good laugh 😂

    10. At worst, Hamilton could finish 3rd four times and 2nd once, and still win the WDC even if Vettel were to win all the remaining races.

    11. Maybe it’s not entirely just in Seb Vettel’s hands but it still is in Ferrari’s hands (or tyres, maybe).
      How? Simple, getting a 1-2 in all the remaining races, and do all that it takes to get it, both titles are yours, Seb, Ferrari. No qualms, no being nice and sporting, no excuses, no nothing. The Merc people are already doing it, 44 has done it all his racing career, so why not you, Seb, why not Ferrari?

      1. What has 44 done in all his racing career? Winning when least expected? I’m sure Ferrari and Seb were waiting all these time for you for telling them what to do.

        1. best crane rider ever
          best cross-country F1 racer ever
          F1 should change its format from now on to crane races on the grass. 44 would be unbeatable.

          1. Absolute gobble-Dee-Gook.

    12. Vettel – finally found out for the distinctly average driver that he this season.

    13. Wha happened to Ferrari’s power advantage over Merc?

      1. it down to tyres now not engines between them

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