Sebastian Vettel, Charles Leclerc, Start, Sochi Autodrom, 2019

Vettel confirms Ferrari had pre-race agreement for start after defying team orders

2019 Russian Grand Prix

Posted on

| Written by

Sebastian Vettel confirmed Ferrari had an agreement in place for how the drivers would manage the first corner after he was told to let his team mate overtaking him during the Russian Grand Prix.

Vettel, who qualified third, took the lead at the start after passing Lewisa Hamilton and Charles Leclerc on the run to turn two. Ferrari subsequently told him to let Leclerc through, but Vettel refused, saying he would have overtaken his team mate anyway.

After the race Vettel, who retired after losing the lead to Leclerc after his pit stop, confirmed the team had an agreement but suggested he had not fully understood it.

“I don’t know exactly what happened there to be honest,” said Vettel. “I think we had an agreement, I spoke in particular with Charles before he race, I think it was quite clear.

“But I don’t know, maybe I missed something. I’m sure we’ll talk about it. But obviously [it’s] bitter today because we wanted to have one and two.”

Vettel refused to give further details about how the agreement was supposed to work. “That’s not something I want to share, to be honest,” he said.

“I don’t want to put the team in a bad position afterwards because somebody said something here or there. I know it’s not fair because I think people deserve to know. It’s not a big deal.

“Obviously I was in third, Charles was in first and we were talking about a strategy to pass Lewis. Obviously I had a very good start so there were a couple of options on the table. Sorry but I really prefer not to [explain] in a way.”

Advert | Become a RaceFans supporter and go ad-free

2019 F1 season

Browse all 2019 F1 season articles

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...

Got a potential story, tip or enquiry? Find out more about RaceFans and contact us here.

115 comments on “Vettel confirms Ferrari had pre-race agreement for start after defying team orders”

  1. Maybe this will settle the talk of LeClerc being an entitled brat.

    Ferrari had a plan and if drivers don’t work together against a dominant Mercedes they can kiss the remaining of 2019 goodbye.

    1. So what about stiching up the teammate for Monza and Spa ? Leclerc is a petulant child(just as big as his teammate) and he isnt man enough to accept when Karma dishes out him same treatment he dishes out to his on track rivals. I expect going forward these 2 will only work to satisfy their personal goals screwing up the team in process and giving their rivals a massive advantage.

      1. I agree with this to a large part. Not everyone is a Bottas though.

    2. I don’t believe we’ve ever had a bigger moaner ever on team radio than Lec.
      Moan moan moan moan moan moan moan moan moan moan moan moan.

      “Charles, this is Mattia. Could you moan less and drive more, ffs?”

      1. A lot of drivers moan. Even 5 time world champions.

        1. actually i think they should ban team radio. just imagine if we knew the kind of moaning prost and senna did. or maybe clark was a cringy whiner. Fangio always complaining about Moss defending dirty.
          Ignorance is Bliss!

          1. And Mansell used to sing ABBA songs slightly out of key. Drove his mechanic crazy.

      2. yeah, the guy complies with the agreement and when the other part doesn’t, he is wrong for moaning.

        go figure.

        1. It’s when he did it that’s the problem. Lap 2 and then after SC restart too. You don’t do swap with HAM 1.5 sec behind waiting to pounce and take advantage.
          You build a gap of 4-5 sec to HAM, stay within 2 sec of Vettel and then you do it. Leclerc couldn’t do either. But whatever, you do the swap later with the pitstops, fine with it. Just don’t moan and ask to do it on lap2.
          Leclerc should’ve just said :”Let me know when it’s a good time to swap”. And Ferrari tell Vettel: “We’ll monitor the gap and let you know when to swap with Charles”. That’s it, no drama.

    3. lol so much gratuitous loathing for charlie.
      Vettel is going to say he didn’t get an advantage on lec so the deal is void.
      lec is going to play the start and showcase the slipstream.
      Binotto should have either run the risk of a t1 crash and have no agreement (ham/bot worked great last season) or say that after swapping both can race again after lap x, it would make vettel look bad and so he would give in.

  2. “I don’t know exactly what happened there to be honest” – no Seb, you know, you’re not honest, and you can’t admit it. Pathetic!

    1. We could all see it even as he was saying it. Multi 21 Seb is back.

      The amount of fans who can’t see this stuns me.

      I can’t imagine what mental gymnastics MG is gonna use to justify this.

      1. So what? he is a 4 time WDC. he is supposed to be multi21 seb. one bottas is way more than we need.

  3. So Vettel went into the race without understanding what the strategy was? Or he stopped listening after the ‘and Seb will lead at that point’ part. Frankly he was an idiot to have agreed to the strategy that we could understand from what the team wanted of him. Like he said yesterday, P3 is like pole in this race. And if Leclerc had moved to avoid giving him a slip stream he would have helped Hamilton with the same

  4. Why couldn’t they have just let them race? The Ferrari was always going to be quickest down to T2 and Mercedes were on medium tyres, so it was highly likely they’d be 1-2 anyway. They didn’t need to complicate matters by effectively trying to decide the race result before it had even started and attaching conditions to what Vettel did.

    I tend towards neutrality, being more a fan of F1 as a whole, but today I’m pleased they lost. They deserved it.

    1. @neilosjames I really think if Vet And Lec start P1 and P2 in Japan they will collide at the start. It feels to me there is so much disrespect and tension that Ferrari decided to plan their starts.

    2. Agree..quite annoying to watch it, if you are f1 fan ;-(

  5. I do admire Ferrari for forcing him to be behind after the pit stop when he refused to abide by the agreement.

    Vettel continues to go down in my estimation.

    1. @sham yeah, it was good to see Seb come out behind however was that really calculated, there was less than a sec between them and Seb’s pit stop took 0.5sec longer than Charles. What it if was faster by 0.3sec?

    2. I don’t admire them for giving up seconds to Hamilton to correct the team politics by delaying the stop. They were racing Hamilton for the win. People working at the factory don’t come in to make sure Leclerc or Vettel is happy after the race when they don’t win. I admire Vettel for seeing the situation with clear eyes. Should he have passed at the start? Maybe it was naughty. It didn’t matter by the time the swap order came.

      1. After the stop where Vettel came out behind Le Clerc, they were both well within Hamilton’s pit stop window, like several seconds within, and on fresher tyres.

        The race was won, with a one-two in the correct order.
        All they had to do was finish. :)

      2. Yes, he should have passed at the start, given that’s what the team agreed to do. He should have also stuck with the rest of the team plan (he should have let Leclerc past when instructed). If he’s going to pick and choose which team orders to follow, Ferrari will either have to abandon team orders entirely or change at least one of their drivers. I have a feeling I know which one would get the boot if they end up going that way.

    3. Didn’t Hamilton ignore a team order in Hungary 2014 despite Rosberg being on a completely different strategy?

    4. I’m not a fan of Vettel but I see no problem with his actions.

      Firstly, Ferrari shouldn’t have made such a plan. Vettel’s chance of getting a tow would probably have materialized anyways as that is the nature of the track. It’s almost a disadvantage to be on pole because of the long strait.

      But VET drove great and quite frankly LEC couldn’t hang with him. No way should Binotto make VET slow down and risk letting HAM benefit from it. The fact they let VET out too long on the first pit stop to give the position to LEC is plane stupid! Last week VET, for right or wrong jumped ahead of LEC and so much was made of it Red tried to make up for it today.

      Red played a stupid game today and it cost them. In the end I think VET will benefit – he’s extra motivated by all the LEC praise and is starting to get his form back.

      I like LEC could be the best driver on the grid presently on the grid. But he has to quit whining when things don’t go his way. VET drove better than him today. On the other hand, the competition and tension between them has benefits if it doesn’t get out of hand.

  6. Dutchguy (@justarandomdutchguy)
    29th September 2019, 14:41

    And more brilliant strategy by Ferrari this race

    1. funny…not..if you are Ferrari fan..they cannot sort out anything properly when it comes to strategies..yak

    2. Could Ferrari have achieved a better result if they had not undercut Seb?

      Could Moaning Minny have achieved p2 instead of p3 if he had pitted a bit later and stayed ahead of Bottas?

      1. Well he could have stayed on the mediums ahead of bottas, instead of changing to soft again and sliding in behind him…

  7. Should we blame him for racing? How many times do we see driver from p3 get the lead? It wasn´t only thanks to slipstream, he stormed past Hamilton and his start reaction was one of the best this year. I know there are many people who´ve been writing Vettel off for a few months and they will obviously take this opportunity to belittle him (although his race was great until the first pitstop and eventual dnf), but get over it, he´s still the only driver (maybe apart from Danny Ric) who can offer Ferrari what they need.

    1. @pironitheprovocateur You can try to provoke as much as you want, but clearly Leclerc has been faster all season. Both drivers make way too many mistakes, but Leclerc has improved in that regard.

      Leclerc is clearly the better driver. By quite a margin really. Agreed I think Ricciardo would probably be even better but still, of the two drivers they have, Leclerc is bringing it.

      1. When was Leclerc faster in a race??? Qualifying is not a freaking race…..its just a position setting… u don’t even know that…omg u thought pole position was the best? u must be stupid… racing requires strategy too…
        Vettel main his kart better than freaking Leclerc and his pace during race was better his offense and defense was better… Leclerc is slow in his mind and misjudge alot situation and failed in his offense move mostly…

        So u are saying that nothing will change during the race? The situation will always be like planning and goes according to agreement?
        Real dumb :) the weather gonna be 25 degree and not rain:) guess what if it rain:)????? so they will still be using slick rather than wet tyres cus the fking agreement:)?
        Vettel was pulling 5sec++++ away and Leclerc couldn’t keep up and kept falling behind…
        Qualifying is different from race… in the 80s lots of team hide their kart performance during qualifying… and kaboom secret weapon during race…and slow down on purpose to win the race so they would not be doubt with being overly extremely faster than the rest…
        Race is endurance ,least mistake ,maintain pace ,main kart parts to last the freaking race and not go all out hardcore and break down… i never heard of a F1 kart that could go faster and faster every freaking lap during the race:) even if so the tyres will finishes first and required pit stop…U don’t freaking remember late schumacher time he had to go slow to maintain the freaking 1 set tyres for whole race year?

    2. @pironitheprovocateur Unless Ferrari need disappointment and lost wins I don’t see what Seb can give them. Ric beat Vet, and now Lec is doing it. Vettel isn’t bad but he’s not the best either, not even in the top 5 f1 drivers this year.

    3. But Leclerc could have chosen to give Hamilton the tow which would leave Vettel still in third position.

      1. Vettel passed Hamilton on the start, even if he didnt get the tow, he would have been in front of Hamilton.

    4. yes we should. Leclerc left the door open for him to help him. And then he forgets all about it ?

      Vettel is handling this situation quite poorly. He lost Ferrari already, they’re not moving mountains and forgetting ethics for him to win because they shouldn’t in the first place, but it is what he needs to beat Charles.

      By himself, he is completely unable to.

      1. If he isn’t enough of a gentleman to honour a gentleman’s agreement, he shouldn’t enter into them.
        I applaud his team for forcing it instead of pandering to his child like behaviour as Red Bull did.

  8. No comment on Ferrari’s strategy or Leclerc’s radio behavior, but I wouldn’t sell Vettel a $.25 cup of lemonade without cash on the barrelhead.

    1. +1
      To quote my mother who’s in her 80s, 5’1″ and weighs about 7 stone.

      ‘I wouldn’t trust him as far as I could throw him’.

      1. Wow, except the better f1 understanding, despite my best efforts, in your case, our grandmothers look similar!

  9. If they had an agreement about the first corner tow, Vettel should have returned the position ASAP and then gone back to racing Leclerc. Refusing the team order really does sour the situation unnecessarily.

  10. Sounds like they pressed the kill switch

    1. Is there a kill switch ? – where do sign up to be Ferrari team boss?

  11. Lewisa Hamilton :D

    1. Ahaha, now that’s a bad (but fun) mistake, making a driver female!

  12. Vettel’s radio message was ”he needs to close up”. Vettel would be stupid to slow down to let a slower car by just to please him. If Leclerc would’ve keept up it would be fair. But he didn’t.
    Title is missleading. Vettel did the right thing.

    1. ouch, are you really falling for this? Its what Vet always does… makes it look like he’s trying but other people’s fault… He was less than 2 sec in front when he was asked. And lets be honest, Ham was 4meters behind when Lec gave Vet a tow.

      1. He stayed out and gave leclerc the position from the undercut without any whining. Your point is? Looks to me your trying to create more drama than there is.

        1. He didn’t stay out, he was made to stay out. He didn’t control his pit stop… Ferrari made him, forcefully lose that place. My point is Vettel was not fair, and I want that in a driver. I want sport to be fair.

          1. yeah, but he didn’t complain, which means he accepted the team decision. get your head out of your behind.
            Vettel said “lets gap hamilton” and we’ll see about the swap later.
            haters will see what they want to see. Reasonable people know the truth.

          2. Vettel was not at all forced to stay out, nothing can stop a driver from saying: I’m gonna box this lap, be ready, and then coming in, if the team doesn’t want to throw away a 1-2 they HAVE to change his tyres!

      2. Its amazing so many people fall for vettels bad acting, probably why trump has so many supporters

    2. Why would LEC destroy his engine like the worst driver at ferrari did? Did you even think of that?

      1. @Vincent, Apparently he / she didn’t.

        I wish that people wold put more responsibility into their thinking and not be so lazy about it.

        If you’re lazy about your thinking – admit it when posting so we don’t have to wade through your uniformed opinions represented as fact.

  13. It does not seem a clever strategy by Ferrari to plan ahead for team orders.
    Just let them race.
    Lec would have done exactly what Seb did and also refused to hand it back.

    I’m very glad to see Seb back on form and sorry for his dnf. He is defo not surrendering to Moaner Lec, which means lots more moaning to come in the races ahead.

    1. But the thing is, Leclerc would have moved to the inside line after the start. That would have given Hamilton the tow instead. Vettel would not have the run up to turn 1 he had now and Hamilton might have been the one to overtake Vettel instead.

      So to prevent that they asked Leclerc to stay on the outside and give Vettel the tow in order to get him in front of Hamilton.

      Then Vettel abuses that tow to overtake Leclerc and take P1.

  14. I’m glad Vettel showed his teeth today, and defied the silly agreement they had to decide the race result in Leclerc’s favour before it had even started. Vettel is a 4-time world champion, and should not be told in advance he’s effectively not allowed to race for the win, especially since the drivers championship is not really in reach for either driver.

    In general I don’t really like the amount of team orders in F1 this season, and certainly for Ferrari it has only brought them headaches instead of better results.

    1. He could always learn to be faster than Le Clerc and then he would have had the priority today.

      You can’t be slower, make more mistakes and expect preferential treatment.

    2. Silly plan or not, once Vettel agreed to it, he can’t renege without looking dirty and duplicitous. If he had no intention of following the plan, he should have said so at the outset. As it is, he looks like he’s trying to cheat his teammate out of points and race finishes.

      1. As it is, he looks like he’s trying to cheat his teammate out of points and race finishes.

        There is no looks about it. That is exactly what he did.

  15. I’ll hold my hand up and say that I, for one am glad to see “Multi-21, Tough Luck” Seb back. Much better than the other Seb he brought to the circuit of late.

  16. The title is being misinterpreted by a lot of people. Vettel said there was a pre-race agreement, but he did not say it was to ask Charles to let him overtake him and then swap places. I think Vettel was correct in defying team orders. Ferrari brains went to sleep after the start. The agreement probably was that Charles will help Vettel overtake Hamilton but Vettel has already overtaken Hamilton in a few meters and genuinely overtook Charles.

    This theory that Charles and Vettel had similar start so Vettel should give position back is ridiculous, if they had similar start then slipstream will help the one behind anyway! And Vettel did manoeuvre around Hamilton to get on Charles tail.

    Vettel was the better driver today and generally is the faster race driver for Ferrari. Maybe we will see a different Vettel going forward.

    1. The point is that Vettel got that slipstream only because Leclerc stayed in front of him. During a normal start he would have moved in front of Hamilton to cover the inside line

      1. And not let the inside line that open.

      2. Once Vettel got past Hamilton (fairly quickly without using slipstream), it wouldn’t have mattered which side Charles was, Vettel would have just moved over to be behind him.

        1. No vettel was still side by side with leclerc going into T1, if Leclerc covered the inside line he would have been able to hold the lead

          1. Highly unlikely, vettel was already alongside leclerc quite early and he wouldn’t have had a chance to cover him. With the amount of slipstream vettel could have overtaken on the inside or outside.

          2. With the amount of slipstream vettel could have overtaken on the inside or outside.

            Vettel was barely ahead of Leclerc going into turn 1. Had Leclerc covered the inside line Vettel would have lost out on 6+ seconds of tow (with Hamilton gaining 6+ seconds of tow). It’s very unlikely after that that Vettel would have passed in turn 1 round the outside and may have even been compromised enough to lose second to Hamilton.

  17. It’s well known that Vettel doesn’t stick to agreements when they don’t suit him so I put this on Charles. He should know who he’s dealing with and be prepared for the knife that’s aimed at his back.

    Charles: Aren’t we going to switch positions?
    Mattia: Your teammate is a snake, get over it and drive.

  18. Just let them race.

    Why try and over orchestrate the start? In Singapore Ferrari could do a roadblock and these sort of tactics worked. But at a circuit where you can overtake you just have to drive as fast as possible.

    I am no fan of team orders and the best drivers are always selfish. IMO this is also a message to Leclerc- VET won’t go down without a fight which is brilliant.

    Leclerc at this point may have absolute pace over Vettel but F1 is filled with examples of a slower team mate beating the faster guy. F1 is about more than just speed.

  19. I am glad Vettel is back on the form. His quali isn’t the best but he has shown in the last 2 races that he can keep up and be faster than Charles when he has to. In my opinion, he was right not to let Charles through. First, it was a big risk cause Lewis wouldn’t waste the opportunity and second, I don’t think anyone should slow 2 or 3 seconds for a slower car to pass.

    In my opinion, this lays squarely on Binotto. I don’t think team orders are good in such cases especially when you don’t fight for the WDC.

  20. Vettel did everything right or am I missing something and he’s not allowed to win a race, what kind of agreement is that? I agree Singapore was pretty much lucky unpredictable win, but what Ferrari did today was pure race fixing. Anyway let the war begin, I don’t see how Ferrari can manage this rivalry peacefully, seems like deep inside Charles and Seb disrespect each other, yet they try to be polite on media.

    1. apparently the agreement was: LEC would give VET the slipstream to overtake HAM at the start, and not to defend the first turn so the FER 1-2 were secure.

      1. Ok, but even Binotto said that “Seb had a fantastic start, he overtook Hamilton already before in Turn 1, Charles didn’t give him the slipstream but Seb took it”.

        Sometimes team order is rational and justified from a general point of view. But “let Charles through” after like 2 laps because of weird slipstream agreement? Then what, they’re allowed to fight or not? Remember Seb eating 2 Mercedes at the start of Hungarian GP 2015, Australia 2016, Canada 2016? He knows how to do it, this is Sochi, long straight, yet Leclerc’s crying like he gifted Seb something really big.

      2. After it was clear that Hamilton was quick and was going to stay quick on his harder tires, they should have abandoned that plan immediately. And this plan only really made sense if they were going to leave both Mercedes for dead in the first stint. What did we see in any race this year to suggest that was something to count on?

  21. Fans need to decide if they are for team orders or against them because it seems to me that everyone changes there opinion based on who’s benefiting/losing out.

    Everyone seems to be against team orders but then they complain when somebody they don’t like seems to disobey they. I mean think back even to Malaysia 2013, When Mercedes were telling Rosberg to stay behind Lewis everyone complained about Mercedes using team orders & not letting the drivers race, But then a few laps later Vettel ignored Multi 21 & suddenly the same fans who were against team orders 5 laps earlier were suddenly horrified that a driver had ignored them & actually pulled off an exciting overtake & created an exciting scrap for the win.

    Make your mind up people!

    1. Comment of the day!

    2. @roger-ayles I think the main objection is turning one driver into a permanent number two through team orders. In this case, it was clearly not intended for that purpose, more to act as a ‘limiter’ stopping Vettel from getting too much advantage from a slipstream Leclerc, presumably, agreed to give. They wanted Vettel in 2nd, basically. The problem was the proviso they put in: if Leclerc had a poor start (or Vettel a better one) then Vettel could keep P1. That gave leeway for interpretation, and obviously each driver is going to interpret a situation to their own benefit. However, the arbitrator then is clearly the team – and they gave Vettel clear instruction of how they read the start. Vettel’s refusal to comply just makes any future agreement with him less reliable or meaningful. I guess he’s OK with that.

  22. After the last last race didn’t he say that nobody is bigger than the team at Ferrari? So what does Ferrari do when someone doesn’t follow team orders? Turn the car off?

    1. They should get rid of vettel, so many better drivers that would drive for 1/3 of the price if not lower

      1. The only driver who could possible replace Vettel now, is Ricciardo who would be a Number 2 to Leclerc cause Charles is Ferrari’s wonder boy.

        So please explain who are those “better drivers”? Bottas who is nowhere since Germany, or Hulk who doesn’t take advantage of an opportunity? Kimi who couldn’t keep up with Seb?

        Vettel isn’t the GOAT nor he is an all time great. But to say he isn’t top 5 of the current grid is a bit too far fetched.

        1. Let’s see, if we’re making a current top 5, whatever your order, verstappen, leclerc and hamilton can’t be missing, then there’s a big gap, at least because of some drivers still being unproven, then there’ll be potential great drivers like russel, norris, then disappointing drivers in top cars like vettel\bottas\albon, this is not disappointing but doesn’t look great, and also hulk.

          Also not sure about perez, he never got a chance in a top team and unlike hulk takes good result chances, might be better than vettel atm, not these last 2 races but on average.

          1. And sainz is at least hulk level too.

      2. @carlos…I’m sure that’s what Ferrari needs is ” the lowest bidder” driving and everything will be sunshine and lollipops.

  23. The plan was stupid and trying to keep with it after it was clear they weren’t going to drop Hamilton in the first stint even on faster rubber was stupid. They were racing a time trial against a car with possibly superior race pace. Why would they spot him a couple seconds by swapping or even giving him an extra bit of tow? To honor an intra team agreement? Did they pinky-swear? Good on Vettel for stopping Ferrari from punching themselves in the face. Of course no good deed goes unpunished lol.

  24. This Ferrari drama is good for us viewers. It would be very boring if we get Bottas level of subordination in every team. Bottas starts the year as equal to Hamilton and becomes Barrichelo by the summer break.

    1. Where was Bottas when the lights went out today? 12 seconds down on Hamilton after 24 laps…hardly a stellar performance.

    2. Indeed. Would be great fun to see a teammate challenge Hamilton in the same way, he’s had it far too easy.

      Times like these you appreciate how good Rosberg was – he’d still be getting to Hamilton had he stuck around…

      1. Let’s have a look at Hamilton’s team mates over the years:

        -Alonso (double world champion)
        -Button (world champion)
        – Robserg (world champion)

        Yeah, Hamilton’s had it really easy. If only he had tougher team mates like Webber or an over the hill Kimi, or Gasly etc.

        I would say the only “easy” team mates Hamilton has had are Kovalainen and to a lesser extent, Bottas.

    3. bwahahaha… I laughed at your last sentence

      anyone remember “Bottas 2.0”? more like “Wingman 2.0″…

  25. The golden child was already moaning about the tow after winning pole yesterday. He must have badgered Ferrari into forcing this deal on Vettel.

    The whole agreement was to the benefit of Leclerc. It made it so that Vettel effectively had no chance of winning.

    Since it’s a difficult track to pass on (Leclerc couldn’t pass Bottas with the slipstream and DRS), Vettel was never going to pass Leclerc on track once he was behind him. If he did pass him at the start he had to move over for Leclerc.

    Leclerc should have just shut up once Vettel started pulling away.

  26. Mercedes inverted cars on the last turn of a Grand Prix not so long ago with Vestappen close behind.
    It’s not like it’s that risky to do it, he was just looking for an excuse not to do it.

    1. True, that was very honest of hamilton back then, considering he was behind on the championship vs vettel!

  27. Why would Vettel honor a agreement, that decides that he is behind Leclerc in every possible scenario. If Leclerc is first after the start, then it’s fine. If Vettel ist in front it’s because of an agreement, we all do not know how much say any of the drivers had in that.
    By the way giving HAM a tow is not really in the exact interest of LEC since he is closer to him, so what kind of sweet loose-loose deal got VET there, he should be so thankful!

  28. Vettel has never honored an agreement with any of his team mates. There is only ever one driver in his team. Utterly selfish. One of the things Mercedes and Hamilton have brought to formula 1 is a sense of ethics and morality. Thug seems to rule the day at Ferrari

    1. Let’s face it though, this particular agreement seems a bit silly. As the car in 3rd, why agree to a plan that all but makes it impossible to win the race. Charles is not #1 in the team, so I can’t why Vettel would agree to not overske no matter good his start was.

  29. mark from toronto
    29th September 2019, 21:15

    The fact that cars are allowed to pit under VSC makes it just a lottery. Why not save money and just spin a wheel and see who wins. F1 is more and more of a joke.

    1. And of course, a closed pit lane under a safety car has never been exploited to change the outcome of a race either.

      1. LMAO! I thought the same thing while reading Mark’s comment!

  30. Karma drew back her bow and shot two silver arrows into the Ferrari plan to fix the race.

  31. Surprised to see so many adopting the position that Charles should simply have grinned and borne it. Why should he? They team had an agreed arrangement before the race. Charles kept his side of the bargain faithfully. He expected reciprocity shortly afterwards. It didn’t come, and Vettel instead got quite condescending on the radio. Where is the teamwork, the faith in one’s teammate? When Lewis Hamilton gave a place back to Bottas in Hungary in 2017, many Ferrari fans jeered and mocked Mercedes for orchestrating that move, and Hamilton for playing along – some said he was not a racer.
    But F1 drivers are in the business to win titles, and you don’t win a title by antagonising your teammate, who is the only other driver on the track that can actively help you win.
    Vettel behaved very badly, but not out of character: we know he gets very impish and impetuous, as the old “multi-21” situation showed, and as his banging wheels with Hamilton also showed. As has been written so many times before, Vettel seems to get into this mental state when he cannot think long-term, and does absolutely nonsensical things that come back to bite him later.
    His retirement – was it Ferrari showing him who’s boss, I wondered? – was some real karma (car-ma?) , a kick right in the teeth.
    Good.

  32. Vettel sticked to the agreement by not overatking a crying Le Clerc before Turn 2.

  33. If the agreement genuinely was as LeClerc seemed to suggest over the radio, then it makes no sense and I doubt Vettel would agree to it. Maybe there was some mis-understsnding between them, as Vettel eludes to.

    Put simply, if Charles “drives straight” and thus gives Vettel the tow instead of Hamilton, Vettel is then given almost no chance to win the race. If he doesn’t pass LeClerc, he probably finishes 2nd. If he does pass him, he has to give up the place and….probably finishes 2nd.

    Such an agreement is ludicrous and seems more about pandering to one of the drivers rather than saying “race, don’t crash, whoever comes out ahead deserves it”.

    LeClerc failing to keep up during the first stint suggests Vettel was their best bet for the win and they shouldn’t have sacrificed him during the put stops.

  34. If VET had won the race, would we have heard the “All is forgiven” speech?

  35. I’m not a huge Vettel fan, but I agree with his actions, he was faster, in the race, period. LEC had nothing. I want races where the action is sorted on the track not pre determined. I’m all for a driver refusing when it’s a ridiculous call. I really like LEC but his whinging is abhorrent, reminds me of GRO, must be a French thing

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

All comments are moderated. See the Comment Policy and FAQ for more.
If the person you're replying to is a registered user you can notify them of your reply using '@username'.