Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Circuit of the Americas, 2019

Austin bumps caused Vettel’s United States Grand Prix retirement

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In the round-up: Sebastian Vettel’s retirement from the United States Grand Prix was caused by the bumps at the Circuit of the Americas, the Ferrari driver said.

What they say

Vettel suffered a right-rear suspension failure on the eighth lap of the race:

It looks like at the moment that it was just caused by the bumps or by the track. Obviously we’ve been racing around the track the whole weekend but I think in the race, it was just I think probably we got lucky before that we didn’t see any damage. So unlucky in the race that with that one lap or one spike, it looked like that was too much.

Quotes: Dieter Rencken

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Ferrari Finali Mondiali, Mugello, 2019
Ferrari Finali Mondiali, Mugello, 2019

A selection of classic Ferraris, some in updated liveries, ran in the team’s annual Finali Mondiali event at Mugello.

Social media

Notable posts from Twitter, Instagram and more:

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Comment of the day

How impressive was Alexander Albon over his first seven races at Red Bull?

Albon hasn’t been stellar, unlike what the headlines make out. But unlike Gasly, he hasn’t been a disaster either.

Whereas Gasly failed to get the RB15 into the top six (where it belongs) on multiple occasions, Albon has always reached the chequered flag there; despite being in his first season of Formula 1.

So in my mind he deserves this shot at Red Bull for next season, but he does need to up his pace more.
Craig Simons

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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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25 comments on “Austin bumps caused Vettel’s United States Grand Prix retirement”

  1. Same for every one, max had a rear wing crack too. Austin track sais they are going to address the problems.

    1. No one else suffered a suspension failure, so it wasn’t ‘just’ the bumps that caused Vettel’s DNF, but they were one part of the equation.

      The tyres were the other. He was sliding all over the place from the start, an indication that he either hadn’t gotten his tyres into the correct operatng range or had allowed them to cool to much on the grid. Leclerc seemed to have a similar lack of grip inititally, but he seemed to get a handle on that quicker.

      The car sliding imparted lateral force on the suspension, then as it rode the harsher bumps, the suspension rod was subjected to additional forces and eventually gave up.

      I know another theory someone mentioned was possible damage caused whilst the mechanics were working on the grid.

      1. PS: Should have mentioned, this was my theory btw

    2. @paulheppler

      Don’t think Austin track managers need to address the issue. The drivers need to race within the track limits.

      1. Yeah, I wonder if Seb stormed into the garage screaming ‘Your suspension is a disaster!’

        1. “GP2 suspension”

      2. MotoGP also uses this track and earlier this year MotoGP riders also had complained of dangerous bumps. It seems like just like Silverstone, people managing Austin track are also incompetent at best.

  2. Re the tweet about the two dead rubbers.

    Tell that to the midfield where there’s a bunch of teams fighting for 4th thru 8th. The championship may be decided but there’s still a hell of a lot to play for (and quite a few millions) for the rest.

    Even the fight for 3rd in the Driver rankings is still tight.

    1. Yeah. What dead rubber?

      Now is the time to lay down fundations for the next season. Bottas needs two wins, Ferrari some speed, Max Verstappen needs to clinch P3 position, all kinds of dead rubber fun.

    2. I totally agree with you there @dbradock

  3. I liked that video of Alonso testing the STC2000 Toyota because you can see his face while driving. He makes some weird gestures with his mouth 😋

    1. @fer-no65 Heh, that’s basically me: can’t do anything that requires deep concentration without my mouth going full retard.

      Maybe it’s a sign of greatness, is early 40s too late to start a racing career? ;-)

      1. @losd He isn’t in the 40s yet. In 2021 he will enter them.

        1. @jerej Nope, but I am

          1. @losd @ho3n3r
            I must’ve misinterpreted the specific intention behind the wording then.

          2. @jerejj I just joked that if I have the same trait as Alonso (doing odd things with the mouth when concentrating), maybe I could also become a great racer… Though my age might be a problem.

            … But since I had to explain it, it was probably a terrible joke anyway :)

        2. He meant himself, not Alonso.

  4. I don’t agree with Nate Saunders. I don’t find it like that.

    Based on the info in the RM Sotherby’s article, a monocoque-change didn’t use to lead to a pit lane-start at least back in 2002 as it has for a while now.

    I agree with the COTD. Yes, he needs to pick up the pace more, but at the very least, keep the current level of consistency to guarantee a stay in the team for the entirety of the season.

  5. How is that Nate Saunders tweet even mentioned, it doesn’t deserve any justification. Just because the main titles are decided, it doesn’t mean that all the positions are settled.

    And who would say no to watching the final 2 races except non-F1 fans.

  6. Not feeling the Nate Saunders tweet… what could possibly be ‘antiquated’ about having so-called dead rubbers at the end of a championship? Disappointing, perhaps, or something along those lines, but ‘antiquated’ would suggested old-fashioned and not in keeping with the ways of the modern world… and there’s nothing particularly modern about last race/game deciders.

    Anyway, I’ve often found myself looking forward to post-title races a lot more simply because there’s no longer the big picture to think about, at least at the sharp end. I can just watch a race, and the drivers and teams can just go at it without having to think about the championship.

  7. I enjoyed looking through the pictures of the 2002 ferrari on the sotheby’s link – there’s something quite satisfying about the way that car was proportioned. it’s not perfect by any means, but the lines flow really nicely and there aren’t many bizarre aerodynamic appendages. the front wing is also strikingly simple – we should remember this was an extremely fast car – MSC set a time at monza that is within about 1 second of leclerc’s pole time this year…this was 17 years ago.

    it really makes me think that radically simplifying the aerodynamics would have a great benefit in terms of cost and perhaps the ability to follow easily. i realise these things do not necessarily follow (i.e. it could cost more to make a really effective and simple front wing). similarly, turbulent wakes were a problem back then too (i have been following the sport since 1995 and it has basically always been a talking point. the big difference now is the crappiness of the tyres, which was less of an issue in the past). another thing that is rarely mentioned is that there is an theoretical option to design front wings that deal better with turbulence, and therefore would be even more complicated (i expect this is an engineering dead end and a huge cash black hole).

    I doubt the 2021 regs go far enough but hopefully there is a measurable difference and it is indeed a step in the right direction.

  8. It looks like at the moment that it was just caused by the bumps or by the track.

    During the race there was a replay of Vettel hitting the sleeper. Just before his suspension broke. He simply went to wide and was “punished” by the track.

    1. @f1osaurus

      During the race there was a replay of Vettel hitting the sleeper. Just before his suspension broke. He simply went to wide and was “punished” by the track.

      No such thing happened.

      1. @rockie Well perhaps you didn’t see it, but it did happen . It showed a bang with sparks flying inside the car.

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