Red Bull team orders row: Vettel says he would probably do it again

Sebastian Vettel says he would probably disregard team orders and pass Mark Webber again if the Malaysian Grand Prix situation was repeated, as he does not believe the Australian deserved victory

Red Bull team orders row: Vettel says he would probably do it again

Despite apologising to the Red Bull team for his decision to contravene its 'multi 21' hold position request and overtake Webber in a fierce late-race battle, Vettel told reporters including AUTOSPORT in China on Thursday that Webber had not assisted him in the past and was not entitled to the Sepang win.

Vettel argued that he had misunderstood the team's message, yet admitted that even if he had comprehended, his actions would likely not have changed.

Vettel uncut: his side of the story

Asked if he would do the same again, Vettel replied: "I am not sure I can give you a proper answer because in the moment it might be different, but I would probably do the same.

"Had I understood the message and had I thought about it, reflected on it, thought what the team wanted to do, to leave Mark in first place and me finishing second... I think I would have thought about it and I would probably have done the same thing.

"He didn't deserve it.

"There is quite a conflict, because on the one hand I am the kind of guy who respects team decisions and the other hand, probably Mark is not the one who deserved it at the time."

Vettel and Webber have long had a fractious relationship, and the reigning world champion intimated that their history impacted on his Malaysian GP actions.

"I never had support from his side," Vettel said. "I have a lot of support from the team, and the team has supported both of us the same way.

"But in terms of the relationship to Mark, I respect him a lot as a racing driver, but I think there was more than one occasion in the past where he could have helped the team and he didn't."

Vettel: the monster Red Bull created

Despite not regretting his actions, Vettel said he stood by his decision to apologise to Red Bull.

"I was racing, and as a racing driver I was solely focused on winning the race and I got a call on the radio, which I heard, but I didn't understand at the time," he said.

"I should have understood, that is why I apologised to the team - because in my action I put myself above the team. Whether you believe me or not is up to you.

But he shrugged off suggestions that he should have received a formal punishment from Red Bull.

"Maybe it is a little bit of a dreamland that you all live in, but what do you expect to happen?" said Vettel. "Make a suggestion!"

shares
comments
Valtteri Bottas certain Williams understands how to fix its issues

Previous article

Valtteri Bottas certain Williams understands how to fix its issues

Next article

Fernando Alonso expects he would obey team orders

Fernando Alonso expects he would obey team orders
Load comments

About this article

Series Formula 1
Drivers Sebastian Vettel
Teams Red Bull Racing
Author Jonathan Noble
The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition Plus

The diva that stole a march on F1’s wide-bodied opposition

In 2017 new F1 technical regulations were supposed to add drama - and peg Mercedes back. STUART CODLING looks at the car which, while troubled, set the stage for the wide-bodied Formula 1 era

The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return Plus

The themes to watch in F1’s Imola return

Three weeks is a long time in Formula 1, but in the reshaped start to the 2021 season the teams head to Imola to pick things up after the frenetic Bahrain opener. Here's what to look out for and the developments to follow at the Emilia Romagna Grand Prix

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola Plus

The 'new' F1 drivers who need to improve at Imola

After a pandemic-hit winter of seat-swapping, F1 kicked off its season with several new faces in town, other drivers adapting to new environments, and one making a much-anticipated comeback. BEN ANDERSON looks at who made the most of their opportunity and who needs to try harder…

Formula 1
Apr 12, 2021
The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture Plus

The delay that quashed Aston Martin’s last F1 venture

Aston Martin’s only previous foray into Formula 1 in the late 1950s was a short-lived and unsuccessful affair. But it could have been so different, says NIGEL ROEBUCK

Formula 1
Apr 10, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace Plus

Verstappen exclusive: Why lack of car-racing titles won't hurt Red Bull's ace

Max Verstappen’s star quality in Formula 1 is clear. Now equipped with a Red Bull car that is, right now, the world title favourite and the experience to support his talent, could 2021 be the Dutchman’s year to topple the dominant force of Lewis Hamilton and Mercedes?

Formula 1
Apr 9, 2021
Are we at peak F1 right now? Plus

Are we at peak F1 right now?

For many, many years Formula 1 has strived to do and to be better on all fronts. With close competition, a growing fanbase, a stable political landscape and rules in place to encourage sustainability, 2021 is on course to provide an unexpected peak

Formula 1
Apr 8, 2021
How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021 Plus

How crucial marginal calls will decide the Red Bull vs Mercedes battle in F1 2021

The longer Red Bull can maintain a performance edge over Mercedes, the better the odds will be in the team’s favour against the defending world champions. But as the Bahrain Grand Prix showed, many more factors will be critical in the outcome of the 2021 Formula 1 World Championship

Formula 1
Apr 7, 2021
How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend Plus

How Williams’ new structure adheres to a growing F1 trend

Williams held out against the tide for many years but, as MARK GALLAGHER explains, the age of the owner-manager is long gone

Formula 1
Apr 6, 2021