Vettel says he was “surprised by the kerb” in first-lap spin

2020 70th Anniversary Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel said he doesn’t see how things can get any worse for him after spinning by himself at the first corner of today’s race.

The Ferrari driver lost control of his car as he rounded Abbey corner at the start of the race. Afterwards Vettel said he thought he’d been touched by another car, but realised afterwards he’d spun by himself.

“I had a very good start and then I wanted to stay out of trouble,” he explained. “I hugged a little bit the inside and initially it felt like somebody touched me.

“I haven’t checked it again, but I think I got surprised by the kerb and lost the car there. I compromised my race a lot and from there I had to come back. So it could have been obviously a bit better day without that.”

Vettel has endured two unrewarding weekends at Silverstone. “From Saturday morning last week I was not able to make any progress,” he said. “That’s the thing that stands out most.”

His team mate Charles Leclerc has had better results, coming away from Silverstone with a third place last week and fourth today. Vettel says it’s hard to understand the difference in performance between them.

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“Around the lap this weekend it’s a bit more difficult to judge because we ran slightly different downforce levels on the cars. Around the lap, it seems like fairly even, the loss. Mostly I struggle in the slower speed and medium speed corners. That’s something that we didn’t get on top of.

“We have obviously the next race coming in a week, not here again but somewhere else so we’ll see what we can do. But hopefully we can be back on a more normal pace.

“Today in the race obviously, also last weekend, our races were very different. I was always stuck in traffic, starting further back. Losing the car in the first lap didn’t obviously help in this regard. But there was probably very few laps to have a comparison in the race. So hopefully the next one is a smoother race and therefore should be straightforward.”

“It’s obviously not the best run for me at the moment but I trust the team that I have around me,” he added. “Everybody in the garage as well so. I’m fairly open-minded for the next race, and I don’t think it can get much worse from where I am.”

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48 comments on “Vettel says he was “surprised by the kerb” in first-lap spin”

  1. The thing is, I don’t really see why any team would want him right now, even Ferrari must be questioning whether to see out the season with him. That’s 5 races done and if he continues like this then ferrari will be finishing 5th this season.

    1. ferrari will be finishing 5th this season.

      your the optimistic type is see.

    2. Aston Martin might be having some second thoughts about Vettel right about now.

    3. Can Ferrari just bin off Seb early and give Hulkenberg a run until the end of the season?

      1. @eurobrun Not while Nico is subbing for Checo (unless Ferrari wants to pay a lot of money). I want to say Checo will be back for Spain, but if he has “long COVID-19” (possible if that dizziness in Hungary was the first sign of the illness because that was 3 weeks ago already), then it’s anyone’s guess when Racing Point gets Checo back in order to

        More likely, if the relationship between Seb and Ferrari becomes untenable (which I have a horrible feeling is going to happen at some point this season), they’ll recall Raikkonen and let Alfa Romeo either try Robert Kubica again or hire whichever FDA candidate it believes to be the best choice (since there’s a non-zero chance Robert might already be substituting at that point, depending on how badly cursed Alfa’s season is in that hypothetical scenario).

      2. they can but they’ll have to keep paying him till for the rest of the season regardless. won’t be the first time they will have done this though

  2. It is quite obvious that VET can’t handle a racing car that does not have abundant downforce. He should come clean and worship Newey, the wizard of aerodynamics, the one who is responsible for his four WDC’s…I am afraid VET will turn into a KIMI (major has-been) and over extend his time at F1, shaming themselves in the process and soiling their “legacy”.

    SF should “offer” VET an early retirement package, including Gordon Murray’s new supercar with a fan in the back. A lot of downforce…..

    1. Vettel did his best performances with a blown diffuser and a backend that was absolutely nailed to the track, his present troubles all stem from losing the back end of the car , he cannot cope with any kind of oversteer. His excuses are lame, phantom nudges etc. Time to retire or tie an anchor/hoover to the back end of the car.

      1. I couldnt agree more. He has no place in F1. Open up a seat man!

    2. @svianna That’s not fair on Kimi, he’s well past his prime of course but even in his last years at Ferrari he was scoring regular podiums, and didn’t make glaring errors like this

      1. Yeah, Kimi was ‘slow’ but at least he was consistent and scored points every race.

      2. And he ended up winning a race just before leaving ferrari, with another very close call the previous race, while vettel with his superior speed and mistakes didn’t win any other races until roughly a year after when he ended up with a beneficial strategy in singapore and that’s been his last.

    3. Seb’s issues have nothing to do with downforce. The current cars have more downforce than anything in f1 before this era. What is wrong is the stuff inside seb’s head. He has this weird mix of over driving and being overly cautious. This silverstone spin was perfect example of it. First he goes way too deep into the corner going way over the kerb at the apex. That’s him being overly cautious to not hit anybody. He is being extra careful not to spin but then he smashes he throttle on corner exit.

      Maybe the computer gave him full electrical power too which could have made it little worse. Maybe he is already frustrated about going over the kerb so he is already being frustrated and then instantly pushes too hard which causes the rear to lose. But it is two mistakes. Go over the kerb and then smash the throttle. Both are fine alone but two mistakes like that is unsurvivable when both happen one after another. And the more mistakes like these he makes the more he keeps making because the solution is to be more careful. But that then just leads to frustration when it doesn’t work.

      I don’t know if ferrari has sport psychologists but seb needs one right now. A lot of sports people use them so this is not a dig or cheeky remark. Seb needs to reset his risk assessment thinking processes. He is being overly careful and careless at the same time.

      1. I fully agree. But they should have started that process WITH him after Germany 2018.
        Mistakes can happen, but here it seems to have spiraled out of control and put Seb in a very fragile state.
        I would hope he takes a year off, resets and comes back stronger.
        Maybe he should even leave as soon as Hulkenberg becomes available to see out the rest of the season.

  3. Seb is really performing badly. This is where Ferrari is, behind Renault, Mclaren and Racing Point, this is maximum that he can give. He can’t deliver more because he doesnt want to change his driving style or overcome cars behaviour.

    Really bad attitude to badmouth team strategy in media.
    I think love is over.
    I would pay his contract and put Hulkenberg to the end the season.

    1. proud_asturian
      10th August 2020, 9:53

      You rate a choke artist who hasn’t scored a podium in over a decade?
      Good thing your type don’t make decisions

  4. Everyone: **Drives Around Corner**
    Vettel: Oh crap! There are kerbs at the edges of the track! Since when!? **Seb SPIIIN**

    1. @seanloh to be fair, he drove into the grass/dirt in the corner, when the weight is shifting forward under braking/release of acceleration.

  5. I don’t get what’s up with him. You don’t randomly forget how to drive? The guy’s a 4 times WDC, one of the most talented out there and yet he’s just… not there. It’s like he’s driving a totally different car to Leclerc – it won’t do anything he wants it to do and he’s right – Ferrari’s strategy they gave him was ridiculous, regardless of the spin – which Ferrari also seem ambivalent on trying to help him.

    Maybe knowing he’s been dropped is hurting him more than he’ll admit. Maybe he’s just falling out of love with F1, or has little passion or interest to fight tooth and nail over the lower edges of the points. The Vettel out there now isn’t the same guy that was in the Ferrari as early as last year. I feel bad for the guy.

    1. He makes constant suggestions there is something with his car.
      “lets see what the car can do this time” and so..

      1. Sounds like Hamilton. “Something is really wrong with this car if the tires are like this”. Or his accusations of cheating… “They must have a lower tire pressure” and then the very clear breaking of pit lane speed limit with no punishment (that I can see) which should place him third.

        1. GtisBetter (@)
          9th August 2020, 22:23

          It’s impossible to judge from the outside.

          1. @passingisoverrated which is why I reserved judgment until I saw the onboard and took note of the engine as it crossed the line and then once it stabilized.

    2. Most people mix up a one lap wonder and a racing driver. Vertel had NEVER shown racing skill, just speed. That is only enough when driving the best car.

      1. A brave suggestion. I would argue that Hamilton, who crumbles under the slightest inconvenience and had a championship winning car in 11 of his 14 seasons, would fare even worse.

        1. @Mayrton , @pironitheprovocateur sshhh..they can’t handle the truth

        2. Yes, both drivers’ titles amount has been heavily inflated by the cars they drove. There’s zero evidence (imo) that vettel is better than alonso, rather we have the opposite.

          And while hamilton equalled alonso on his first season as team mate, hamilton’s debut season was superb and he was used to bridgestone tyres from the earlier formulas, while alonso had to adapt swapping from michelins; overall I think alonso always in the same car would’ve been competition year on year for hamilton, and not that he’d have destroyed him just cause he matched him on his debut year.

  6. RocketTankski
    9th August 2020, 19:57

    He’s has become Grosjean. Occasionally brilliant, often forgettable, sometimes dreadful.

    1. I really can’t remember anymore when either of them were brilliant. So much talent in F3 and F2. And so cheap too. Bring them up and bring it on.

    2. An as Grosjean, who bravely admitted, VET also needs professional help. The signs have been apparent for a long time

  7. Vettel says it’s hard to understand the difference in performance between them.

    Mirror, mirror on the wall, who is the fastest of them all?

    1. Well we know by now just how bad Webber was..

  8. Unfortunately it wasn’t a surprise to anyone else seeing Seb spin again on his own.

    1. Bet365 have a new betting game, name which corner or straight vettel will spin…! :)

  9. He should just leave now or after the next race, not much point for him to see out the remainder of the season and contract.

    1. About 50 million dollars actually in it for Seb.

      That’s why Ferrari were panicked last year when their highly paid driver was doing badly last year. It made them look like idiots – all the people who were desperate to please Vettel, but had failed because they fought so hard to keep Kimi in the seat and tried to rescind Leclerc’s contract when the Ferrari boss passed away in 2018.

  10. As a Ferrari fan, I love Seb but the team need someone to get into his head, open it up and see what’s going on
    He’s one of the best drivers on the grid and the skills are still there (Hungary) but something is not in tune
    It’s not great seeing it because Vettel brought back the feel good and passion to a Ferrari environment that had toxins in its system and now it’s time to work with him, and help him if possible even if it’s our final year together

    1. Ferrari didnt see betond the hype and should have noticed that my grandma would have won with that RB, 4 times as well. Just poot analysis of the most overrated driver yet

      1. Oh boy, does it entertain you to spew the same comments over again?

      2. Your Grandma would struggle to win against Covid let alone against other top F1 drivers

  11. Lots of People saying he couldn’t lose his talent overnight.

    Not over night but over the last few years since Ricciado beat him.

    A talent that was already a bit flattered by the dominant cars he had before that.

    1. Because you just luck into the victory with Toro Rosso. It is far too convenient for many people to jus forget and cherrypick the moments they want, but winning the titles in 2010 and 2012, apart from other moments, was no small feat. There’s definitely more than contributed to his current for and I dare say any driver (and a very specific one at that) would crumble all the same with so many operational and in-built car problems.

      1. yeah I agree with your comment (Pironi). I think Vettel was amazing in his Toro Rosso and RedBull years. maybe even better at Hamilton at the time. but his performance levels have declined a lot over the years, that’s for sure

  12. He’s been very inconsistent since the start of the hybrid era.

    Ricciardo came into RBR and made Vettel look stupid.

    He had some strong drives for Toro Rosso (Brazil 2008 finished ahead of Hamilton).

    I think if Hamilton after 7 seasons in a row having the best car on the grid suddenly found himself in the third (or fifth) best car on the grid would similarly struggle.

  13. I think it’s natural for any top driver to overdrive a mediocre car to try and wring more out of it than it has to give – Hamilton in 2012(?) springs to mind..

    But Seb does it even in a good car, like last year. He’s always been prone to the occasional silly mistake and has never been the greatest combative driver out there – but this is just embarrassing now.

  14. The spin was forgiveable, if surprising for someone of Seb’s established skill level.

    However, if I (as an occasional Corporate Games kart racer) tried telling Dad that I’d spun because “the kerb surprised me”, he’d probably ask jokingly whether it had jumped out at me or something, because otherwise it would have been in the same place on previous laps and should not have been a surprise.

    There is a temptation to suggest that Seb isn’t as good as he was, but I believe the reason he’s coming up with this sort of weird excuse is because communication between himself and Ferrari has snapped. He’s not talking the way he usually does to his team, he’s lost trust in them, and when that happens, it’s hard to trust what the team made (i.e. the car) to even the minimal extent it’s apparently possible to trust the SF1000.

    From today’s output (notably what he said while Charles was beginning to set fastest laps), I think the snap is irretrievable. The Sebastian-Ferrari connection is over in all but name, unfortunately.

  15. Which begs the question: Why should Checo lose his seat in favor of this Ballerina?

    As others have pointed, 4x WDC yeah…. with a dominating car 7+ years ago!!! but since then what has Vettel done?. Why should RP disrupt their driver lineup in favor of Vettel? Marketing for AM? Ask Infinity how they fared with Vettel as their brand ambassador.

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