Lewis Hamilton, Sebastian Vettel, Autodromo Hermanos Rodriguez, 2018

Vettel concedes championship to “superb” Hamilton but targets constructors’ title

2018 Mexican Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel said Lewis Hamilton deserves his 2018 drivers’ championship crown but vowed to give Mercedes a strong fight for the constructors’ championship over the final two races.

“Obviously not an easy day,” said Vettel after failing to stop Hamilton from clinching the title. “But well deserved, congrats to him and his team.

“They did a superb job all year but I think we need to stand there, accept that and say congratulations. Of course we would have loved to hang in there a little bit longer but it wasn’t the case.”

Vettel led the championship as recently as July, but a poor series of races since the summer break saw him fall out of reach of Hamilton.

“There are still a lot of lessons to learn and make sure that we make the right conclusions,” he admitted.

“I think one thing is clear. We are very talented and very gifted team. We have most support behind us. I think we have very, very talented, clever people on board. We have huge potential of which some still needs to be unleashed.

“But I think everybody is fighting very hard and we are focusing to make sure we finish those two races this year in style. We try and fight Mercedes for the constructors and knock them off their throne, maybe to give them a taste for next year.”

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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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14 comments on “Vettel concedes championship to “superb” Hamilton but targets constructors’ title”

  1. Well, I think he’s been really classy and graceful both in how he answered Coulthard at the end of the race and went to congratulate Hamilton (and great to see their respect there too), how he went to the Mercedes garage to congratulate them, and how he (what I saw on German TV) steered the German press conference towards Max Verstappen “today is first of all about the guy who won it today, here next to me, and the deserved champion Hamilton” – one could say he was avoiding answering ‘where did you lose it’ but he is right: let’s celebrate the winners for their great work, and then regroup and go for it again next year.

    He gained more respect from me today, even while deservedly losing this WDC fight. And he had a great race too, clean and fast, no mistakes there.

    1. @bosyber This is the way Vettel has always been never gets into the snide remarks against other he congratulates and move on. to his own self reflection.

      1. It is kind of sad that people seem to be discovering this side of Vettel only now. He was very gracious in defeat even when he lost to Ricciardo in Red Bull, despite the fact that Red Bull was clearly favouring Ricciardo back then as they are favouring Max now.

      2. Vettel has always been very fair and measured in his remarks even on dark days, when he’d rather not speak than say anything nasty. Yet he seems to be always painted as a villain, perhaps it’s an Anglo Saxon bias against him from the English speaking media, but it’s an arguement that doesn’t hold water. There was a similar situation with Schumacher versus Hill. Vettel has also received some awful comments on this site and to be fair a great many are biased. Of course Lewis has a great season but if we consider how miserable he gets when it doesn’t go his way, I think Vettel in comparison has kept it together very well with gods grace under huge pressure. Not to mention the awful circumstances that a car with fewer new parts, is a couple of months after the fact, faster than the updated version. Ferrari it seems have went down a blind alley since Spa in terms of development and suddenly once they wind back the spec, Mercedes and Hamilton look rather ordinary. For Vettel and the entire team that makes the entire situation even more depressing and sad. However it’s also worth remembering that nothing lasts forever and it also took the Schumacher machine 4 seasons to get focussed and start winning at scale. Let’s see where we are in a year from now.

        1. Anglo Saxon bias against him from the English speaking media

          Citation needed.

    2. Congrats to Ham and I have massive respect for Seb, his reaction after the race was a pleasure to see.

    3. Well some people are quick to assume I didn’t think Vettel had that in him, can I please just feel extra respect by him continuing to show it, thanks.
      I do think his sense of humor sometimes tends to be a bit snide and/or mean, and he has lagged in admitting to mistakes.
      But, last year too, he was gracious in defeat too, and indeed with Riccardo too.

      Talking about bias, I watch a combination of RTL.DE and Sky commentary – I am pretty sure that I know who tend to show bigger biases w. respect to Vettel (or anything German /Red Bull apart from Rosberg).

    4. @bosyber – very nice and balanced comment. One that is totally unacceptable for the internet, for that very reason ;-)

      Sunday was definitely a day to steer attention to the two winners – Max for his stellar weekend performance, and Hamilton across the year.

      And he had a great race too, clean and fast, no mistakes there.

      I do hope Vettel takes away this lesson from today. He can race cleanly and well, and perform neat overtakes. We need more of this, and less of the other stuff.

  2. This is what the Constructor’s title race should be like if F1 were considered a true team sport (check link)
    Mex: Red Bull, Ferrari, Mercedes
    1. Mercedes 385pts
    2. Ferrari 362pts
    3. Red Bull 310pts
    Still all to play for for Ferrari.

  3. I think we may still have a fight for the WCC as I don’t see Mercedes winning either of the last two races.

    Ferrari need 1-2s though, I can see them winning but 1-2s might be a bit too much, Red Bull will do well in Brazil I think but not Abu Dhabi.

    Going to be close though.

  4. Hey Seb, I think you conceded the WDC to HAM long ago. What a disaster this season became!

    It could have been an interesting year but VET completely fell apart. I have never in 30 years seen anyone fail as badly as Vettel. He started screwing up early and often, leaving the fans (other than HAM fans) with yet another dud of a season. I don’t understand how a driver of his caliber could have made so many errors. I can think of 3 other drivers (minimum) that would have been close or more likely ahead of him at this point in the season

    ROS was at least able to put on enough pressure and stay close enough to rattle him and make it interesting. But since Mercedes didn’t want another “toxic” atmosphere, they picked Bottas, a butler. How bad is Bottas? He has an occasional brilliant race, but not enough of them. Hamilton was rarely outside of his comfort zone due to that and especially because of Vettel’s inexplicably bad decisions and poor driving. Hamilton did what he had to do though – which wasn’t much – Seb did it for him.

    Arribene’s claim that Vettel will win a WDC with Ferrari is a pipe dream. Maranello should fire Arribene pronto and put Binotti in charge. Vettel should also be terminated and although it would cost them a bundle, they have the money. They could buy out RIC’s contract. LeClerc is too young to win a WDC and Vettel won’t exactly be a good role model for him.

    If they don’t do something major, next year will be another dud. Hamilton will beat Vettel again and again – he is into his head. Hamilton needs to be pressured and Seb can’t do it. As far as RBR and Max goes, Honda can’t be hurried and it will probably be at least a couple of more years before they can be a contender against Red and Merc.

    1. Yeah. I lost most of my respect for Seb this year. I always thinking he was the only worthy opponent to Lewis after 2016 but he kept showing that he was too fragile if we compared him to Nico.

      I don’t care if Hamilton beat Vettel again and again anymore. I just hope spin-happy Ferrari car suit Charles well next year. The driver who master 360 when he was spinning.

  5. Clarification
    “I can think of 3 other drivers (minimum) that would have been close or more likely ahead of him (Hamilton) at this point in the season”

  6. Pity those 3 drivers were not and are not….reality sucks hey i guess we have to reaort to fantasy…

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