Sebastian Vettel denies Ferrari is using team orders in 2017 F1 title fight

Sebastian Vettel says the Ferrari Formula 1 team has not yet imposed team orders on Kimi Raikkonen in order to help the German's world championship challenge

Sebastian Vettel denies Ferrari is using team orders in 2017 F1 title fight

Raikkonen's second place finishes to Vettel in the Monaco and Hungarian Grands Prix in particular have led to suggestions that Ferrari is favouring its lead driver, but Vettel does not see it that way.

"I am a bit surprised by the way things are put," said Vettel.

"I can't speak for other people, but Kimi and myself were racing each other the whole year.

"I read or heard after Hungarian GP that he was protecting me. If you speak to him, he'll make it pretty clear.

"I don't think he was leaving anything behind, if he had opportunity properly to pass me he would have tried, and that is fair enough.

"It would have been same the other way around - we're racing for the team, we're both trying to do our best.

"I don't know what other teams are doing, but for us we both go flat out, and then see what happens."

Asked if he was now more mindful of points than race wins, he was adamant that he had tried all he could to pass championship rival Lewis Hamilton for victory at Spa.

"Obviously you need to be aware of what you are doing, but it wasn't like I was saving myself," he added.

"I tried everything I had at the time. I stuck with him the whole race, maybe not wheel-to-wheel, but it was really close and intense from driving point of view.

"I enjoyed that a lot, but he had the upper hand in the end, so there can only be one on the top step of podium."

Vettel also said he and Ferrari had taken lessons from his chase of Hamilton last Sunday, coming into this weekend's Italian GP at Monza.

"There are some things that I learned from Spa, we learned as a team, things that maybe I would do a bit different," he said.

"At the time it felt like the right thing to do, with hindsight it was [possible to be] a bit more clever.

"Going into this weekend we need to be fair and say this track suits Mercedes, but the performance last week gives us hope, so we'll try to do the best.

"I think the form we showed in Spa was real, and the speed was there in particular in the race, which weeks ago on a similar type of track [Silverstone], maybe wasn't the case. So that's very positive.

"We had a smoother weekend all around, but still I think we've made improvements on all fronts, so I was very, very happy with the performance last week."

shares
comments
Perez and Ocon admit they let Force India F1 team down

Previous article

Perez and Ocon admit they let Force India F1 team down

Next article

Lewis Hamilton has a plan in mind for the rest of his F1 career

Lewis Hamilton has a plan in mind for the rest of his F1 career
Load comments
The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1 Plus

The ‘backwards step’ that is the right move for Formula 1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Plus

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. DAMIEN SMITH brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Plus

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus Plus

How F1’s other champion to emerge from 1991 thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Plus

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021
The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021