Video: Vettel’s ’yellow flag’ overtakes

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    This video is absolutely fascinating, it shows 3 overtakes Vettel made on his way back through the field on Sunday. One of the passes was on a HRT and looked suspicious in another youtube video but was in fact clean. The second was the one sky sports showed during the race and was under yellow and red flags. But the third is a very interesting and clearly shows Vettel passing a Torro Rosso under yellow flag conditions. Take a look for yourselves:


    It seems to me although he passed under yellows the Torro Rosso also appears to be waving him by so I don’t think he would have been penalised. But that only brings up another question about the rights/wrongs of inter-team orders, and the questionable actions of the likes of Schumacher in simply letting Vettel by as if he was being lapped.

    PS. Credit to @cmckinleyF1 for tweeting this.


    The speed difference with that Torro Rosso was immense.

    Despite have seen 20 years of Formula One, I never remember a faster car actually significantly slowing down for a backmarker under yellow.

    Rather than speculate, does anyone know the actual rule (written down, not guess) about significantly slower cars?


    Fernando Alonso was like…
    i lol’d


    Referring to the questionable third overtake at around 11:54 in the video:

    It’s very hard to tell from the in-car perspective, but it’s possible that Vettel only completed the pass – that is, the entirety of his car was ahead of the Toro Rosso, without any portion still being alongside – at the very edge of the yellow flag/green flag border. At 11:54 in the video, notice how Vettel only returns to the racing line (in effect completing the pass) the split second after he has passed the green flag. This is purely a hypothesis on my part, and I would appreciate if anyone can find track-side or aerial camera angles to either corroborate or disprove this theory.

    Besides that, it’s quite clear the Toro Rosso was considerably below normal racing speed, and that the intention was to allow Vettel by – note how the cars are tightly bunched going into the Senna S, yet the driver has clearly backed off on the straight so as to leave a massive gap to the other car ahead. Vettel, on the other hand, is in the slipstream, carrying much more speed, and so decided to swing left.

    As for Schumacher, it was his own prerogative to let Vettel by. He was the driver on the receiving end of the attack, and so he has the right to relinquish the position without a fight, should he so choose.


    Yer I agree on how slow the STR was going, Vettel didn’t have much choice but to overtake so it probably wasn’t worthy of a penalty. If anything the video just underlines the extent to which the STRs were falling over themselves to let Vettel by, which is interesting in itself.


    This is really interesting, thanks for posting it @Ads21. I hadn’t seen the move involving the Toro Rosso.

    Obviously Vettel hasn’t received a penalty so either this was legal or the stewards didn’t notice it. Given that we can all watch Vettel’s onboard feed I’d be very surprised if Ferrari didn’t have someone doing so, looking out for exactly this sort of thing. After all, they were quick to dismiss the suggestion that Vettel had overtaken Kobayashi illegally.

    I think the pass was legal. I’ll get clarification if I can, but here’s my understanding of the rules.

    The International Sporting Code explains how yellow and green flags should be treated by drivers during races. Appendix H, Article 2.3.2 says:

    In order to assist with the application of the rules concerning yellow flags (see Article b), the exact point from which a particular yellow flag or light applies (no overtaking) may be defined by means of a yellow lateral marking on the edge of the track furthest from the racing line and/or a flexible vertical marker (‘‘floppy’’) on the verge. The purpose of such indicators must be explained in the supplementary regulations.

    If you watch the video above, you can see Vettel passing such a marker at around 11:52-11:53, on the left-hand side away from the racing line. At this point the green flag is visible ahead. I believe the green flag applies to the marker board Vettel had passed on the left because they are both within marshal sector four (see the FOM track map).

    As I say I may have this wrong and if I find out anything else I’ll post it here.


    A few Twitter comments state that any appeal relating to any decision made in 2012 must be lodged with the FIA by the 30th November.

    Ferrari have 3 days to bring this to the FIA.


    @keithcollantine as you can see in the video, Vettel’s dash is still showing the yellow flag lights during the overtake and into the start of the braking zone


    @disjunto I didn’t say they weren’t and, as I said, I watched the video.

    Do you know what the rules are regarding the flag lights in the cars? I’m trying to find them at the moment – there doesn’t seem to be anything under ‘signalling’ in the ISC appendix I referred to.


    @keithcollantine I don’t know what the rules are, but I would like to think that the most direct form of communication they use on flags towards the driver is the definitive guide on whether they are within a flag zone.



    I don’t know what the rules are

    I bet Sebastian Vettel does. I bet Ferrari do too – and that brings me back to my original comment.


    Something needs to be done about those torro-rosso’s…

    Ironic that people make a noise about Massa letting his teammate past, yet when an entirely separate team is instructed (illegally and obviously behind closed doors prior to the race/season) to let Vettel by it is just accepted.

    It is completely unacceptable. If they want to allow B-teams, they must also allow third drivers.


    So from the looks of it, the zones on the track appear to make it a legal move, but the light on the wheel is still flashing yellow, so there seems to be some ambiguity.

    I’d say that Ferrari are almost certainly aware of this and will have looked at it already and made a decision not to challenge. Unless they already did question it and it was already clarified.


    @infy I absolutely agree with you. I remember customer car controversy in 2008 but this is more remarkable question over B-teams. Yes, STR is slower. Probably too slow to interfere A team’s car but still they should try to race with A team because they’re separate team. also This case is not including in now-legal team order because they’re not same team. I think FIA should make some warning signs or rules to prevent it sooner than later.


    as for yellow flag, I don’t think this is gonna be problem or Ferrari would appeal it even though they can.

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