Vettel will not be given support role

Red Bull will not ask Sebastian Vettel to play a supporting role in Mark Webber's quest to win the Formula 1 World Championship title, despite the German's own chances slimming when he suffered an engine failure in the Korean Grand Prix

Vettel will not be given support role

Vettel was forced to retire from the lead of the race, and whereas victory would have given him the world championship lead, he is now fourth in the standings, 25 points behind Fernando Alonso and 14 behind team-mate Webber.

But Red Bull team principal Christian Horner said it was too early for Vettel to give up on his own challenge, and that things could turn around quickly just as they had in Yeongam - where Webber began the race as the points leader before crashing out.

"As we saw in this race, at different points during the race, different drivers were leading this championship," Horner told the BBC. "We gave a big gift to Fernando today and as a team we need to look at that, but we've seen how quickly this can change.

"In last year's scoring there is only 10 points between Sebastian and Fernando and obviously Mark is even closer than that so our strategy will be to push both drivers.

"It would be wrong [to ask Vettel to do that]. Nobody has a crystal ball and if anybody could have predicted today's race I'm sure they would have done very, very well. This championship is not over until the last lap in Abu Dhabi and we will be pushing flat out until that point in time."

Red Bull started the inaugural Korean F1 race with both its cars on the front row, and Horner admitted that it was a bitter experience to come away from the event with zero points.

"Sometimes motor racing can be cruel and for Red Bull it was one of those days," he said. "Sebastian and the team had done everything right, read the strategy and the conditions.

"He got himself in to a commanding position, almost in sight of the end of the race and then a catastrophic engine failure unfortunately denied us a certain race victory.

"Mark hasn't made many errors this year, but unfortunately made one today that cost him dearly. Mark is obviously bitterly upset with what happened today, but he will bounce back. After Valencia, which was the last time he had a DNF - he came back and won the next race. He'll bounce back at Brazil, it's a track he enjoys.

"Sebastian has been remarkably philosophical. He's dealt with that issue. It's cruel for him because it is not the first time and to lose a guaranteed victory right now is tough."

shares
comments
Sutil unhappy with race performance
Previous article

Sutil unhappy with race performance

Next article

Korea Sunday quotes: HRT

Korea Sunday quotes: HRT
Load comments
How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in the best-of-the-rest F1 2021 battle Plus

How Ferrari gained a new edge over McLaren in the best-of-the-rest F1 2021 battle

Supremacy in the McLaren vs Ferrari fight over third place in the constructors’ championship has ebbed and flowed between the two teams so far in the 2021 Formula 1 season. But for several key reasons, right now it seems the advantage has swung decisively back to the Scuderia and McLaren knows it.

The 70s US superteam that tried and failed to crack F1 Plus

The 70s US superteam that tried and failed to crack F1

Vel’s Parnelli Jones Racing was briefly one of the biggest names on the US motorsports scene, but its ambition outstripped its resources. STUART CODLING relates the story of a Formula 1 campaign cut off in its prime

Formula 1
Oct 26, 2021
The key details that boosted Red Bull and held back Hamilton in Verstappen’s USA victory Plus

The key details that boosted Red Bull and held back Hamilton in Verstappen’s USA victory

As the 2021 Formula 1 title battle winds towards its climax, the United States GP added another thrilling act in the Lewis Hamilton-Max Verstappen battle. Although Hamilton aced the start, Verstappen and Red Bull took the initiative with strategy and were richly rewarded, despite Mercedes' best efforts as the race went down to the wire

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
US Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

US Grand Prix Driver Ratings

On a baking hot afternoon at the returning Circuit of the Americas, Formula 1 drivers were tested to their limits. As the pressure on the title contending squads reaches an ever-greater level of intensity, the foremost challengers again showed their class, but were outshone by a standout drive from the upper midfield

Formula 1
Oct 25, 2021
Why F1's misunderstood party animal will thrive in retirement Plus

Why F1's misunderstood party animal will thrive in retirement

Three years on from Kimi Raikkonen's last Grand Prix victory at Austin, he is now six races away from ending the longest Formula 1 career in history. His friend and former Ice1 Racing rally team PR man ANTHONY PEACOCK explains why there’s nobody quite like the 2007 world champion and why F1 will miss him (but he won’t miss it)

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert Plus

The 10 greatest drives of lost legend Jo Siffert

It's 50 years since Jo Siffert was killed in his prime at Brands Hatch. The Swiss scored just two world championship wins in a Formula 1 career spent largely with privateer teams, but showed on numerous occasions in single-seaters and in sportscars with Porsche that he could beat any of the best drivers of his era given the right equipment

Formula 1
Oct 24, 2021
Verstappen exclusive: How Red Bull’s ace has become F1 champion material Plus

Verstappen exclusive: How Red Bull’s ace has become F1 champion material

As Red Bull and Honda go all-out for victory in the Japanese engine manufacturer’s last season of its latest Formula 1 dalliance, Max Verstappen finds himself thrust into a compelling title fight with Lewis Hamilton. He told OLEG KARPOV about his evolution into a world championship contender and why Red Bull's no compromise ethos suits him down to the ground

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021
How Mercedes went from Austin practice domination to "very tight at the front" with Red Bull Plus

How Mercedes went from Austin practice domination to "very tight at the front" with Red Bull

Mercedes has been on a roll of late in the ultra-tight fight to win the 2021 Formula 1 world championship. It started off well in practice at Austin for this weekend’s US Grand Prix, but Red Bull got closer as Friday unfolded and even seemed to find an edge in one critical area of what seems set to be another close contest

Formula 1
Oct 23, 2021