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Hamilton wins Turkish GP as civil war breaks out at Red Bull
Posted By: James Allen  |  30 May 2010   |  3:49 pm GMT  |  313 comments

Lewis Hamilton won the Turkish Grand Prix, his first victory of the season with Jenson Button second and Mark Webber third. It is McLaren’s second one-two finish of the season. Webber leads the drivers championship, McLaren take over the constructors’ championship lead.

Horner has work cut out to manage drivers now


But the race will be remembered for the extraordinary incident on lap 40 when the two Red Bull cars drove into each other while fighting for the lead. It is likely to prove a turning point in the championship and certainly in the relationship between the drivers. It will require incredible management skill by Christian Horner to establish calm in the team and then maintain it.

Horner’s immediate reaction was not to blame either driver but to say that the team was disappointed with both drivers for not giving each other room. Lip-reading what he was saying in real time as he watched the two racing was “Move, move!” and one wonders which of his two drivers he wanted to “move”.

It is reminiscent of the Senna vs Prost feud in the late 1980s, when Ron Dennis has admitted he was too close in age to the drivers to keep order. Horner is only five years older than Webber.


Vettel had been a shade faster for the two laps before the incident. Webber seemed to lose ground on the long straight out of Turn 10. Vettel closed on him and pulled alongside.

He got his nose ahead but not by enough to then seal the move by closing the door. But that is what he tried to do. A generous interpretation would say it was youthful impetuousness. A less generous one would call it ruthless.

The result was he eased into the side of Webber, Vettel’s right rear wheel into the sidepod of Webber’s car. As he walked away he made a hand gesture that implied that Webber was crazy, but the replays of the incident appeared to confirm that Vettel moved into Webber before he had made the pass stick.

Vettel was eliminated, while Webber needed to pit for damage to his front wing.

“Seb had a big top speed advantage and he went down the inside, ” said Webber. “I obviously wasn’t totally happy with the situation because obviously he was coming down the inside, and I thought that at that stage I was pretty much not giving the lead up but it was pretty much his corner, well, not his corner but his situation because he was on the inside, but I just stayed on the inside, tight, to make sure that he was still staying on the dirty stuff and then on the run over the crest, obviously after the crest, he started to come back my way and that’s when we touched.”

Vettel saw it differently and refused to accept the blame, although he did admit losing control of the car. He received a warm reception from the management on the Red Bull timing wall.
“We were all pretty much the same pace and I felt I was able to go quicker, “ said Vettel. “I dived down the inside, had the corner and was on the left. I was trying to focus on the braking point. All of a sudden I lost the car and we touched. I’m not the kind of guy who pushes all the fault to one guy. We are a team.”

As the two Red Bull cars flew off the road, Hamilton took the lead, Button second place.

There has been a growing tension between the two Red Bull drivers, so intense has been the competition between them. Vettel has been struggling to deal with Webber’s rich run of form since China and it seemed that when he spotted that Webber was losing a little pace, he felt that it was essential to press his advantage immediately.

At the start Webber got away well while Vettel jumped Hamilton for second place. Hamilton came back at him and re-passed him.

Button fell behind Schumacher at the start, but passed him later in the lap, a critical move given the way he got stuck behind the Mercedes in Barcelona. He pulled away at a second per lap, showing how vital it was for him to make that pass. After seven seconds there were only 3.5 seconds covering the top four cars, Webber, Hamilton, Vettel and Button.

The rest of the top ten held position in the opening phase. Massa brushed tyres with Kubica, but the positions remained the same and an accident was avoided.

Hamilton was right with Webber from the end of the first lap, the straight line speed advantage of the McLaren very evident. Every lap Hamilton would be 3/10ths faster in sector 1, then the Red Bull would open up a gap thanks to its speed through Turn 8, then the McLaren would come back at him down the straight. The McLaren looked the faster car.

The stop four cars stayed together, with Webber, Hamilton, Vettel and Button close together.

Vettel was the first to put on lap 15. A lap later the two leaders came in and a slow stop by McLaren meant that Hamilton came out behind Vettel. He was held up by a sticking rear wheel, but also by the mechanic not being able to release him from his pit box as Webber drove past.

Button stayed out the longest of the top four, leading lap 16. He pitted on lap 18 and rejoined fourth, so the tactic didn’t work for McLaren. Red Bull had done the better job on strategy.

Hamilton attacked Vettel on lap 19, but couldn’t make it stick. The leading three drivers were separated by a second, while Button sat back a little in fourth.

Then came the turning point moment of the race on lap 40 when the Red Bulls indulged in fratricide.

The Mercedes cars didn’t have the pace on the hard tyre. Schumacher fell away at around 1.2 seconds per lap from Button, while Rosberg’s problems with the tyre meant that a train formed behind him with Kubica, Massa, Petrov and Alonso in it.

On lap 49 the McLaren drivers staged their own replay of the Red Bull inter team battle, but they showed how it should be done, giving each other room and passing beautifully. Button passed Hamilton in the final corner, but Hamilton came back at him and repassed into Turn 1, albeit with Hamilton understeering into the side of Button. It was brilliant stuff and a rather pointed lesson to Vettel and Webber on how to race a team mate. After that Button backed off and settled for second place.

Shortly before this battle Hamilton had been told to “save fuel” and was informed that Button was doing likewise.

Alonso passed Petrov for 8th place on lap 53, making contact with the Renault and giving him a puncture. It was a tough end to the race for the Russian who had a strong weekend and looked set for a strong points finish. He had the small consolation of setting fastest lap.

There will now be a painful debrief at Red Bull with both drivers reminded of their responsibilities to the team, especially in the face of a resurgent McLaren team. The chummy scenes of celebration after the Monaco 1-2 are long forgotten. The gloves are off and as the pair are likely to be fighting for the same piece of tarmac for the rest of the season, it’s going to be fascinating to see how it evolves.

TURKISH GRAND PRIX, Istanbul, 58 laps

1. Hamilton McLaren-Mercedes 1h28:47.620
2. Button McLaren-Mercedes + 2.645
3. Webber Red Bull-Renault + 24.285
4. Schumacher Mercedes + 31.110
5. Rosberg Mercedes + 32.266
6. Kubica Renault + 32.824
7. Massa Ferrari + 36.635
8. Alonso Ferrari + 46.544
9. Sutil Force India-Mercedes + 49.029
10. Kobayashi Sauber-Ferrari + 1:05.650
11. De la Rosa Sauber-Ferrari + 1:05.944
12. Alguersuari Toro Rosso-Ferrari + 1:07.800
13. Liuzzi Force India-Mercedes + 1 lap
14. Barrichello Williams-Cosworth + 1 lap
15. Petrov Renault + 1 lap
16. Buemi Toro Rosso-Ferrari + 1 lap
17. Hulkenberg Williams-Cosworth + 1 lap
18. Glock Virgin-Cosworth + 2 laps
19. Di Grassi Virgin-Cosworth + 3 laps

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  1. Formula Zero says:

    The expensive young drivers’ development program certainly created some exciting drivers. But Vettel’s moves in various occasions have raised the question that they might not have been trained as a team player. Most people obviously consider him as one of the fastest drivers around, new Schumacher is not a nick name that’s given away in charity; it is his skills. However, he is certainly turning into the biggest nob ever. He ran into Webber in Toro Rosso in the rain a couple of years back, wrecked his own chance of getting good chunk of points in Australia last year & now he took Webber out of the win in Turkey 2010. Red Bull would’ve been leading the constructor’s championship if he didn’t make that crazy move. If the championship come down to the wire and Red Bull & Mark Webber miss out on the championship by a few points, Vettel should be accountable for that. There are incidents in just about every race, but Red Bull should fine Vettel for being so disrespectful to his own team mate. FIA sure is not going to fine Vettel because he ran into his own team mate. But Vettel owes Webber the win. A lot of people don’t give Webber the credit that he deserves. As a fan of F1 I’d rather support a gracious driver like Webber than an immature selfish driver like Vettel. Go Webber, you deserve the championship because of your own talent, nobody babysitted you throughout your career & you surely deserve that more than any team mate you ever had.

    1. Canadian F1 Fan says:

      Completely agree, well said. Maturity needs to come with speed, Seb is lacking in the former department.

      1. Henry says:

        http://www.redbull.com/cs/Satellite/en_INT/Article/Turkish-Grand-Prix–Not-A-Result-To-Savour-021242854675153

        If anyone feel like letting Red Bull know how they feel there is the link, I think it is worth putting the fans view across forcefully.

    2. Brace says:

      couldn’t agree more

    3. Buzz. says:

      Well said,spot on. Jnr. is showing he can’t handle pressure.Mark is a breath of fresh & as you mentioned so gracious.The whole field could learn a great deal from Mark.

    4. Gareth says:

      Absolutely right. I’ve read in some sections of the media that Christian Horner holds Webber to blame for the incident.

      Is he blind, dumb and stupid? Anyone with a pair of eyes and sense could see that Vettel just turned into Mark. Mark left enough room, closed in a bit to show SV that he wouldn’t just be gifted the lead, much like JB and LH.

      SV was idiotic and reckless, and for Horner to back him shows how much they really regard Webber. On the outside it’s fair play and evens but really it’s Schumacher and Barrichello all over again.

    5. Andy W says:

      I am not so sure, lets forget all the pit wall gossip and talking heads and consider the accident….

      Mark gave Vettel JUST enough room and on the slow mo shots was closing the door slightly (although how much that factors in at 160mph or however fast they where going), Seb then turned/drifted wide (and the shots have it looking bumpy for him) and collected Mark. I would say the blame is probably 70/30 Sebs.

      Not sure how much maturity has to do with it, I think its very easy to sit in our armchairs with all the camera angles and replays and analyse something that happened in factions of a second. Of course Mark has more experience he has been racing for nearly 10 years longer, and been in F1 for half a dozen years more…. thats not Sebs fault, experience is something that can only be gained over time.

      For me I have long questioned Sebs ability to overtake, and this incident just adds to those questions… I just have to consider this against the fact that all drivers fluff overtakes now and then…. it was only a few races ago that Mark ruined both his and Lewis’ race in Oz by being equally ‘stupid’.

      1. Luca says:

        I agree – I think Mark should have given Seb more space.. he should have given any driver more space rather than squeeze him out.. and the fact that it was between team mates should equate to a little more respect.
        Mark has been questioned over his aggressive moves and defending in the past, and given how deep they were getting toward the breaking zone, if they had not both moved towards the racing line sooner rather than later, then i doubt either would have made the corner.
        To me its more 50/50.

        Will be interesting come Canada tho…. i just hope the red cars are more in the mix by then!

      2. Andy W says:

        There was enough space, Seb moved right into Mark’s car…

        At the end of the day Mark is entitled to defend his position and doesn’t need to drop back just because a challenger has pulled alongside (team mate or not), yes Mark could have been a bit more generous but he wasn’t being aggressive in defending he didn’t shove Seb onto the grass or jink into him the way that Seb did to fight off Lewis…..

      3. Rishi says:

        That was my gut reaction too – Mark should have given him more space because they were team-mates and, though your team-mate is your biggest rival, you are both getting points for the same team. I know what Mark did was perfectly allowed within the rules and also that Sebastian shouldn’t have turned in on him but by leaving only a car’s width I felt the margin for error was too small.

        What I will say though, is that all this engine and fuel-saving business has made things interesting. Haven’t read the above post on the intra-team rivalry yet but if the team were trying to slowly engineer a change in position then my sympathies do lie further with Mark – even though he may still not be blameless.

        A fascinating point in light of the fuel-saving development was made on the BBC in their post-race Forum by Eddie Jordan. When an accident like that happens we all instinctively look at it in isolation – without considering some of the events in the build-up which may have contributed to it.

    6. nik says:

      james I really hope you are working on a post atm that describes and details what the hell is going on behind the scenes at Red Bull at the moment. It seems like sheer lunacy. As a big fan I am lost for words if what is being rumored is true..

    7. ChrisS says:

      Let’s not forget Webber can be aggressive too and (some would say) unfairly so.

      But on this occasion it was undoubtedly Vettel’s fault. It wasn’t in itself an outrageous mistake by any means, but the mistake was his, not Webber’s. It was only outrageous because the other party was his teammate and he should have been more careful.

      Really hope Red Bull don’t try to stitch up Webber this season. For all Vettel’s talent, he is going to start damaging his own marketability if they don’t manage situations like this carefully.

      1. tarun luthra says:

        webber has been a known driver in closing the doors of an faster car behind him
        he does that shumi chop
        eg clipping kimi wings in brazil 09
        clearly he was slower shd have moved aside
        both the guys are to blame
        but wt can u do in f1
        one needs overtaking n its not possible wit such high downforce cars.

      2. Marybeth says:

        In Nascar, if you can pass clean, go. Vettel could not pass clean. He tried to wreck Mark & ended up wrecking himself. I agree with Martin Whitmarsh who was astounded that CH and AN were coddling him in the pits after what he did. RB keeps saying that they do not have a 1st driver. Mark did just what he is suppose to do. If RB had made clear to SV ahead, that incident might not have happened. That is what coddling will get you.

    8. Matt NZ says:

      Fully Agree. Vettel you have the raw talent but on this one a quick, immediate, sincere, and unconditional apology to your team mate would have been the correct response to this incident.

      As a long time Schumacher fan, it has been exciting to see the next generation try to stake their claim, and Sebastian has certainly placed his markers early.

      However like Schumacher it appears that in the heat of the moment, selfishness and over aggressiveness can sometimes lead to incorrect decision making.

      Like the Schumacher-Villeneuve incident of 97, I think immediate track justice has been served on the driver more (if not totally) at fault. Michael, you unfortunately lost the world championship with that rash act, and Sebastian, you may have just done the same, allowing your on form team mate a 15pt lead – time will tell if this costs you, or even worse your team, the championship.

      In addition – Full respect to Webber. Like Jenson, many pundits felt that the overrated old boy would wilt under the embarrassing pressure of losing to the next generation. And like Jenson you have shown that there’s still some tricks left for the youngsters to learn.

      Best of luck in the championship!

    9. John H says:

      Hear Hear!

    10. Paul Kirk says:

      “Babysitting”, that’s a good term, Formula Zero, and it also applys to Lulu.
      PK.

  2. mael says:

    Vettel was at fault.

    Webber made a statement that he would not be pushed around.

    If Webber wasn’t in Vettels head before, he sure as hell is now.

    Webber better win this years championship because he won’t get a better chance than he has now.

  3. Vivek says:

    James, I want to know if McLaren have made progress forward or is this the case of the track suiting to the setup of their car. I don’t recollect them bringing any updates to this race and it was a huge surprise to see them upfront and challenging the Red Bulls.

    Also is the nature of the track responsible for Ferrari’s failure or is it that the other teams have upped their level? How about Canada, will it be similar to Turkey?

    If so I am bracing myself for a tough race for Ferrari.

    1. James Allen says:

      Read Friday’s LG Tech Report. They have improved their car and the track did suit them. But not as much as Canada will. I fancy a Hamilton win there as he’s very good close to the walls

      1. Peter says:

        Definitely!

      2. Heffalump says:

        At Montreal he’s not been especially brilliant at pit lane exits though.

      3. Marybeth says:

        He won’t have Kimi to run into… :)

      4. Dortann says:

        Oh, and I am gonna bet Kubica will be a strong contender too in Canada :).
        On the whole RBR thing – it was Vettel’s fault and I am absolutely astonished how it can be a subject of any debate.

      5. Flintster says:

        I fancy Scheys chances there as well, purely as he can drive well there, needs the car though which may not be ready yet!

  4. carl craven says:

    Well done lewis and Jenson, thanks to the Red Bulls for providing some entertainment.

    A great feisty drive from Lewis which paid of for both Mclarens and well done to jenson for showing that he has the pace in the dry and the wet and knows how to attack his team mate and how to put in some fastest laps.

    It’s a shame for the Red Bull team mates, but I guess racing incident or not somethings going to crack somewhere, 2 into 1 doesn’t go too well in formula one.

    Much better race than I anticipated and thanks for the great blog James.

  5. Alexx says:

    My impression is that Lewis was miffed by Buttons move at the end of the race in fuel save mode.

    McLaren & Red Bull will have the spotlight on them for the next few weeks!

    1. Nevsky says:

      Not many commentators have picked up that Lewis was more than a little bit miffed at the time. He was clearly under the impression that both he and Jenson were in fuel saving mode, and therefore would have expected Jenson to hold station.

      Maybe the pit wall had to remind Jenson about the fuel situation, and that´s why he backed off.

      1. TM says:

        I agree. I thought it was pretty let’s say unsporting of Button to overtake when it was obvious Hamilton assumed they weren’t racing.

        It was also telling that as soon as they were both aware they were racing who came out on top.

      2. Rishi says:

        My Dad picked up on this too and its probably a relief for McLaren that Lewis was able to get him back so quickly because if Button had won there may well have been some head scratching.

        I definitely appreciate McLaren’s policy of letting their drivers race, as much as possible, right through to the chequered flag. The issue here was that because of the fuel saving Lewis wasn’t strictly racing and therefore, presumably, felt Jenson was in a similar position and wouldnt attack him. In such a case it would have been better to define more clearly the balance (“you’re both saving fuel but only by a little so you can still race” or, “you’ve both got to save a lot of fuel so just bring the cars home (i.e. not racing)”). I don’t think the latter would have broken the “team orders” rule; in the heat of a title battle more explicit team statements have gone unpunished in recent years since the rule’s introduction.

        Still, the presence of ambiguity in the radio message made it more interesting for us I guess!

      3. Fausto Cunha says:

        Same opinion, i never seen Lewis celebrating so litle , normally he jumps out of the car jumping arround and all.
        He really wasn´t expecting to be attacked by Jenson.

      4. Nick H says:

        Was it a case of Hamilton realising Button is a much fiercer team mate than expected when Jenson signed for McLaren.

        Dont forget he’s had two seasons of no threat at all from his team mate with Kovalainen

      5. Marcus Redivo says:

        I can’t speak for Lewis, but if I just saw someone I know well get punted out of the lead in front of me by their team mate, I wouldn’t be too eager to rub it in with a splashy celebration. As well, victory tastes sweeter when it is the fruit of your own effort, rather than of someone else’s misfortune. And then there was the surprise from Jenson. I can understand his subdued performance after parking the car.

        In the post-race press conference, during Jenson’s segment you can clearly see Lewis say something to Mark while jerking his left hand towards his right, Mark responding, and then making the same gesture. The camera then went back to Jenson. It leaves me thinking that Lewis and Mark were confirming that they were in agreement about what they thought happened.

  6. Daniel Dinu says:

    Great race…
    Why was Hamilton so gloomy at the end of the race?

    Clearly Vettel’s fault in my view, thinking Mark was done and history in that corner.

    Good recovery from Alonso. 12 to 8, passing Kibayashi and Petrov.

  7. Brace says:

    I didn’t have much sympathy for Vettel before and I have even less now. It was simply stupid but those things happen. Anyone who has driven even a decent F1 simulation on computer is familiar with that situation. You will be sure the other guy ran into you until you see a replay from the camera out side of the car.
    The thing that probably pissed me off the most about Vettel is his hand gesture while it was essentially his fault. I suppose an apology to Webber would be appropriate.

    1. Jeb says:

      Agreed. Vettel may have speed but he lacks maturity. Pair that with Red Bull’s on-again, off-again reliability issues and he’s not doing himself or his team any favors at all. If this isn’t affecting Horner’s view of Seb yet, it may come around to haunt him later.

    2. Nick F says:

      I think people are a bit too hard on F1 drivers and sports people in general. If you try very hard to do something, and it is your dream and there is a load of pressure on you then inevitably there are going to be times where you make mistakes and can’t control your emotions. That is what sport is about and I’m glad it happens because it is what we all want to see. It’s entertainment, its drama. I bet there are loads of posts to this thread because of it, and I bet people enjoyed the race greatly because this incident happened.

      Even the great F1 drivers have lost it. …In fact I’m pretty sure I have seen all the main players lose it at some point.

      -Schumacher at spa when he ran into the back of Coulthard wanting to punch him.

      -Schumacher being pressured into a mistake in Australia, hitting the wall then ramming into hill.

      Alonso spitting his dummy in Hungary when Hamilton was his team mate.

      -Hakkinen dropping it in Monza and crouching behind a bush crying.

      -Hill being not able to cope with his rivalry between Schumacher and ramming into the back of him at Silverstone and Monza.

      etc etc etc.

      It’s the stuff we want to see. F1 can be incredibly tedious. It’s great to see some drama AND best of all overtaking and incidents at the front which is something that rarely happens.

      1. TM says:

        I agree that everyone makes mistakes. But Vettel makes SOOO many.

  8. BiggusJimmus says:

    It was just good racing until Vettel veered right. Disaster now. Come the end of the season, one of them has to leave the team.
    Interesting over at McLaren, too. Button could have closed Hamilton out and come in for the big win on his better tires. Jenson, it seems, drove the smartest race of the bunch.

    1. Phil says:

      coulda woulda shoulda

  9. Joseph says:

    I watched the crash in detail in digital replay:

    The way I see it, Webber did not give enough space, in fact he squeezed Vettel on 2 occasions…very small squeezes of milliseconds, which made Vettel go left almost unnoticable and then lose the control over the car (because maybe touching the damp white line) because of an imbalance in the car going over the bump and then he went all right crashing into Webber.

    Of course Webber has every right to defend but Vettel was already passed him 2 feet and that last minor squeeze to the left by Webber was not necessary, which is the cause of the accident (which started the Vettel response to left and then lose control going all to the right).

    Which is also why Horner said in an interview that BOTH drivers need to give each other space…Webber did not sufficiently while Vettel was passed him, then did that move that you will see in super slow motion, while Vettel was ahead, which was the cause.

    And, Button made an oportunistic move while they BOTH were told to save fuel, so slow down. Hamilton thinking, ok, we can slow down, maintain positions…Button still racing…that is just wrong. If Hamilton kept racing, Button would not have even come close.

    I know most will think the opposite for both incidents, but that is life.

    1. Drez says:

      Most will think differently because they have a more objective view but that’s life.

      1. Call says:

        Watch the slow motion, he is right.

      2. TDiddy says:

        Normal defensive racing line as you would expect from any World Championship leader defending P1.

      3. Antoine says:

        superb comment Drez..

    2. Mike says:

      Jeez, so what did you want? Webber to yield to Vettel and Button to sit behind Hamilton all race. I tune into F1 to see some top class racing.

      Webber and Vettel coming together will result in further intrige for the rest of the season. While Button going wheel to wheel with Hamilton was excellent. More of the same please.

    3. Heffalump says:

      Thanks for that, well done, a tough analysis but a perfect one in my view. Stupid accidents afford stupidity on both sides. One thing though: Hamilton was [i]told[/i] that Button was following the same fuel saving measures. We do not know for sure if JB really was on the same level of information. Also Hamilton might have been miffed by his pit stop going wrong (problems at the right rear end) which put him behind Vettel. Until lap 41, that is.

    4. MR Squiggle says:

      Joseph,

      I also watched the super slow-mo. I only see one definite (albeit tiny, very small) correction from webber to the left, way before Seb was alongside. From then on, any steering wheel movements are simply Webber dealing with the track undulations. You need to face it, Vettel was facing a braking duel into the next corner, and he couldn’t face it, he simply tried to complete the overtake move too early by moving to the right. His instincts were correct when he started the move, but he needed the balls to hold his line until the apex of the next corner. No-one could ask Weber to move aside, he was leading both the race and the world championship and was entitled to defend his line.

    5. Prof Bolshaviks says:

      Vettel, tried to take advantage, no only of the speed advantage but the fact his team mate was supposed to move over and give him space.
      No other driver worth his seat would have moved over for Vettel, Webber did the right thing.
      You can’t assume every other driver will give you all the space you want so you can pass them.
      Vettel should never have put himself that close to the edge of the track, he should have gone round the outside like Button tried.
      He screwed up simple as that.

    6. Matt NZ says:

      Hold up your hands in front of you, index finger up, thumb out. Now look at which one of them makes the letter “L”…that’s L for left mate.

      The way that Vettel moved – that’s the other way – right. Same as Webber actually – as he moved right to try to avoid a collision

  10. ajag says:

    Well, I at first though the incident was entirely Vettel’s fault but looking at some replays and the position that Webber was in, being nearly all the way on the left hand side of the track bar one cars width, for a left hand turn Webber was making as much of a statement by being and staying there than Vettel by pulling across to the right for a left had turn at the end of a straight. I think Vettel did not expect Webber to still be that far across to the left.

    On German TV, Horners first interview hinted that he saw it the same way…

    1. Gareth says:

      Question: Do you really think any RACING driver is just going to bow down and just let a competitor go past? Team mate or not, they are competing.

      Only instance where Webber should have moved over is if he had a problem with his car, which he didn’t.

      We see what Webber did at practically every race without mishap, this is what they do, but never have I seen the attacking driver recklessly swerve into the driver that they’re passing.

      Webber left 1 cars width of space, he didn’t push him onto the grass like a one Fernando Alonso did to LH in Spa 2007 (albeit that was tarmac run-off) or what a one Michael Schumacher has done to many a competitor.

      Instead of holding the inside line like lewis did on jenson on the main straight, he swerved into him before he’d fully passed him.

      Under no circumstances did Webber do anything wrong. Anyone who says differently quite clearly doesn’t know anything about racecraft.

  11. kowalsky says:

    webber came out best, so it is hard to say he did the wrong thing not to give vettel room, like horner was begging for. There was a lot at stake there. And both of them wanted to come out on top. Yes, we have a war in our hands, and i like it.
    At mclaren it was almost the same, but button is a diferent animal than vettel, and it showed. But you could see that hamilton was upset to be attacked by his teammate when he was told that button was saving fuel as well.

  12. Curro says:

    “Shortly before this battle Hamilton had been told to ‘save fuel’ and was informed that Button was doing likewise”.

    That explains the face and voice tone of LH after the race. What a day! With strategy (note the singular form) being now so predictable, whoever wants to pass will have to do it on the track.

    1. Richard Dreyer says:

      I agree. Although no refueling has taken away some strategy, its good to see them having to attack on the track not in the pitlane. The extra points insentive between 2nd and 1st also helps and I’m hoping the Mclaren and Red Bull boys can battle it out at the sharp end over the coming months.

  13. N. Machiavelli says:

    It’s obvious Vettel needs to work on his mental discipline.

    Instead of wasting time naming his cars, he ought to
    be working on things that make a difference in the championship. Things such as driving sensibly when the team has first and second place locked up would be a good place to start.

  14. k9major says:

    I think that this was a very important result for JB. He overtook Schumacher decisively, pretty much matched his team mate, had a good duel with him and was always in touch with the front. Everyone expected him to get beaten in qualifying, so no surprises there, but he now has the raw pace to challenge Hamilton. I still don’t think he will beat him over a season, but it’s shaping up into a fascinating contest. Still too close to call.

    1. m77t says:

      I agree, lots of people still doubting his dry weather ability, but his laptimes around the midpoint when he backed off a little and then reeled out some fastest laps showed otherwise

    2. Nick F says:

      I think that’s a fair point. He is doing better than I thought he would do, and he did a god job in this race. I think that you have to also factor in that both drivers were not in clean air. during much of the race their pace was governed by the people in front of them. I think most people coming out of the race had formed the impression that the Mclaren had slightly better race pace. The Red Bulls had track position though and that should have lead them to have a 1/2 finish.

    3. J says:

      I agree to some extent, was worried it would be ‘here we go again’ when past by Schumacher early on for Button but he proved me wrong.
      I do have to wonder if earlier on Hamilton was held up a touch by Webber and Vettel whilst later was saving fuel. We need them 1/2 from early in a race to really see rather than towards the end saving the car.

  15. Canadian F1 Fan says:

    This one is on Vettel I’m afraid. The onus is on the driver passing to make it clean, he tried to put an exclamation point on the pass and it bit him in the ass. Very rookie of him.

    I’m surprised nobody has mentioned that this is the second time Vettel’s taken Webber out in the last few years…. How he can claim to not be at fault is comical – and I’m not even a Webber fan – perhaps this is a result of putting kids into F1 cars? Maybe old Nige has a point about how the sport has changed…. Very young drivers, very safe tracks and cars, very little maturity. I feel for Webber on this one. I hope he lets go at Seb behind closed doors, the kid needs to be brought down a peg.

  16. CH1UNDA says:

    The love-fest is over in all the teams. I doubt there was much goodwill in the attempt on Lewis by Button as you try to suggest James. The body language on the podium warns of tough times ahead in the McLaren and Red Bull garages. Button is definitely working on his softy image – he, like many, seems to admire Hamilton’s aggressive overtaking style and wants a piece for himself. The only positive for Lewis is that imitation is the best form of flattery especially if it is coming from the reigning champion.

    Of course all this drama hides a few crucial facts the first of which is that Massa was lack lustre on his track even if he out qualified and out raced his mistake prone team mate. What was interesting was that Alonso in a Ferrari spent most of his time behind the second driver in the team he dumped last year! Where does the problem lie in Ferrari? And will Karma come back in favour of Petrov some time soon for what Alonso did to him today?

    1. James Allen says:

      I don’t think the Button move will lead to problems on the level that Red Bull have with their drivers

      1. Jeb says:

        Neither do I. For one thing, Button & Hamilton have the shared experience of being world champions and I expect that Lewis has probably developed more maturity in this year from their relationship. Both Vettel and Webber have big things to prove in their respective careers and they’re running out of time to do them.

      2. kbdavies says:

        Hello James, I kinda disagree with you. There are certainly tough times ahead for McLaren, and i predict some turbulence in the Lewis/Martin/Jenson relationship.

        Lewis was told to conserve fuel, and that “both cars are the same” – This is understood to mean that the cars hold station because they are both in fuel saving mode, so no overtaking. Martin Brundle confirmed this at the time.
        Lewis was shocked to see Button overtaking him. During post race interviews, he called it “unexpected”. After the race, before the podium ceremony, they had a quick chat about it before the cameras focused on them. It seems that Jenson was told something else.

        Lewis unhappy attitude says it all. No victory celebration coming out of the car, no hugging or shaking mechanics. No happiness on the podium. In fact, you could see him contemplating the events whilst he was on the podium.

        He is trying to understand why he was told both cars were holding station, when Button was still racing. Incidentally, Button was also told to conserve fuel.

        Once a driver feels there may be a conspiracy against him in the team, its usually a downward spiral from there. I predict this will be Lewis’s last year at McLaren. 2011 at the most. I also predict he will be going to RBR.

      3. Tom Johnson says:

        Absolutely. Jenson also added on BBC forum that he was told to go into fuel saving mode 3 laps after Lewis.

      4. Craig D says:

        I agree with you except for the last paragraph. I can see Lewis being a bit miffed (good job he still won the race else sparks with the team would have flown)!

        But once the team debriefs I think Lewis will realise he was perhaps just begin tad too conservative rather than the team trying to jeapardise him in favour of Jenson. Therefore, all will remain amicable at team McLaren, for now at least.

        As for Red Bull though, ooh that’s gonna be a tense debrief! You get the impression the team ultimately favours Vettel and Webber is being a fly in the ointment. It seemed Christian Horner was slightly siding on Vettel’s side I reckon (which I disagree with).

      5. **Paul** says:

        Disagree James.

        Fuel saving ? Gotta be joking. Mercedes had no issues, even the Ferrari’s had no issues and we know that engine uses more fuel. Given how little of the time they’re on WOT I think it’s a joke. Stopping them racing, or trying to.

        Hamilton’s move back on Button was so nearly taking them both out, thankfully JB managed to get out of the way. It was deseperate move and I think if it was for minimal points JB would have held station.

        Given how close that move came to a Red Bull situation I think the F1 press need to look at this one again. Someone in McLaren told Lewis to back off but not JB. That’s what happend at RB isn’t it… they’re cars touched too…

        Dodgy happenings at McLaren…….

      6. Nick F says:

        you can’t compare cars like that. Yes some cars have the same engine, but it doesn’t mean they have exactly the same fuel consumption during the race.

        remember that each car is running dif levels of wing so have different drag levels. the fast cars are able to apply more power for longer periods. they are all changing settings on the steering wheel to do with fuel engine mixes and fuel consumptions. also some of the drivers are running a slower pace because they are stuck behind another car.

      7. f1jocker12 says:

        you’re right… saving fuel was the coded message to back off and conserve position, rather than attacking the teammate….

        same thing with redbull… no “saving fuel” was necessary…

        it’s war… and no time for love stories anymore…

        now this is a new mental stage for few of the top drivers…

      8. Jey says:

        James,
        Are you sure about that comment.When Button made that move on Hamilton,he had made almost 1.3 seconds on that lap alone over his teammate.

        That can happen if Lewis had done a mistake,but he didnt.So it clearly indicates when Mclaren told them to “conserve fuel”,Lewis did that whereas Button seems to have pulledup a fast one on Lewis.

        Lewis’s expression and body language after he won the race said it all.This is first win in this season but he never had any sort of excitement in him.

        Its only a matter of time before the gloves come off from the Mclaren team mates as well

      9. Dave Roberts says:

        Well, who would have thought that when we were discussing the obvious but fair rivalry between Webber and Vettel yesterday that this would happen today.

        The biggest thing for me in this was Horner’s attitude after the race where he virtually blamed Webber for the crash. The reason I feel this is such an issue is because I can see Webber taking exception and looking elsewhere for next year after all. Perhaps I should be re-evaluating my view of Vettel as well!

        In relation to the Button/Hamilton contest I thought that Button looked very contrite after the race and his body language was one of someone wanting to make amends for an error of judgement. It seems to me that Hamilton understood the instruction as the two were to hold station, whereas Button considered that whilst he was to conserve fuel he could still race against his team mate.

        I think Button’s reaction afterwards will quickly diffuse any potential tension.

        By the way what a great race!

    2. Flintster says:

      Button and Lewis showed each other respect on the track and their the only driver line up in my view thats geniune outside the car when they both say they respect each other.

      Awesome driving from both – Lewis deserved the win and McLaren deserved the 1-2….

    3. Marybeth says:

      I am waiting for Ferrari to find a way to blame Kimi for their bad race, as Stella did on this blog after the Monaco race 2 weeks ago…just out of force of habit. :)

  17. Joern says:

    Hi James. Thank you for excellent insight into formula one.

    I watched the race on german RTL-television, and after the race Florian König and Niki Lauda talked to Red Bull advisor Helmut Marko. He said that Webbers race-ingenieur should have, but did not inform Webber that Hamilton was closing in, and that fact ought to have motivated Webber to give room for Vettel.

    Right after this, Christian Horner was caught in the pit, and he also indicated that Webber should have left more room for Vettel. Although he would listen to the drivers before judgment.

      1. Kedar says:

        I wouldn’t give too much into RTL’s coverage. They also interpreted Christian Horner’s message as “Hey Mark you were slow and you gave no room and destroyed Seb’s race”. (My German isn’t all that great but thats what I made out of it) Which wasn’t completely true.
        I guess they are (may be rightly so) focussed on the German drivers and their views are least said are biased

      2. Michael says:

        Indeed your German is not very good because this was not said.

      3. Flintster says:

        Oh come on!!! Weber knew Hamilton was closing or he did not, who cares, he racing his team mate for the lead… these are the best drivers in the world and race each other hard… ohh no wait I need to know from my race engineer where the car is 3rd place is….?!?!

        Rubbish – Racing incident… and fair play for both the Red Bulls and McLarens making it an exciting race for a change….

  18. Fausto Cunha says:

    Great race, very close between the Red Bulls and The Mclarens, he others were miles away.

    As for the Vettel/Webber: Seb seemed faster at that time and he made the move on the inside but he didn´t cleared Webber so When he moved to the right he was there and thay made contact. Its Vettel fault in my opinion.

    As for the Button/Hamilton: Great fight there on those 5 corners and the straight.I think Lewis was surprised that Jenson attacked him.He did not celebrated like he used to, he looked a litle bit uncomfortable.

    Mercedes and Ferrari just to far away.

  19. Salty says:

    Wouldn’t like to be Seb Vettel trying to explain to his team mate how it was Mark’s fault that the win was gifted to McLaren. Christian Horner has a very open powder keg to manage for the rest of the season and I don’t envy him one bit, but he really does need to read Vettel the riot act. The young German maybe fast, but his race craft looks decidely ham fisted.

    1. Salty says:

      Oh, silly me. Apparently Christian thinks Webber, his pole sitter, championship and race leader, should have ceded his lead to Vettel. Why? Because he had a kilo or two more fuel on board, thus having to turn down later.

      Nonsense! Actually VERY angry right now. How can a team so very obviously stick two fingers up at their own driver – esp. the one who has got pole, the lead and be leading the champ. Mateschitz needs to take a long cold hard look at Horner to see if he is the right man. Shame, I really like him.

      I have always liked Webber’s no-nonsense (read Aussie) attitude, but never been a fan of his racing. But he is doing a better job than Vettel right now. Why is the team not supporting him? Very poor showing from Red Bull – the ‘fun’ team.

  20. Chris says:

    Apparently the two RBs may have received team orders shortly before (fuel mix down, fuel mix up), which explains why Horner was talking about Mark leaving enough room etc.

    I’m a fan of neither driver and both could have left each other more room but the fact is, Webber just carried straight on like you’re entitled to (with Vettel forgetting to stop short of actually making contact!), Horner’s language after the race was strange and team orders may have happened.

    What a stink, and I feel sorry for Webber.

    1. drums says:

      I fully agree with all you’ve said above.

      1. drums says:

        And, as seen from video repetition, the wrong movement seemed to be eventually Vettel’s opening to his right in order to gain position for the upcoming curb after not having cleared Webber but for a wheel.

    2. CH1UNDA says:

      Curious – why was Webber asked to turn his engine down? Does it have anything to do with his comment at the press conference that the race was not won for certain? Is there a chance that he was carrying a problem? Was he suggesting all Vettel needed was some patiency? But if he was carrying a problem, why did he resist the overtake? James, we hope your digging gives us answers soon – very intriguing situation in the red bull garage.

  21. Thomas, Canada says:

    McLaren are doing a fantastic job of developing their car and are now leading the Constructors Championship, which is amazing given the Red Bull car advantage.

    Red Bull could rue the early season unreliability and now the in-fighting could make it worse.

  22. Nathan says:

    And this is why I love F1.

    The intrigue, the controversy, the rivalries, all created by two men going wheel to wheel at 190mph.

    Sensational race, it was amazing to watch Hamilton and Webber duke it out, and then the moment that could turn this season on it’s head.

    Can’t wait for Canada.

    1. JR says:

      Seems like the refueling ban it’s not that bad at the end, it certainly produces sensational races as positions have to be gained on the track; all we need is a couple of teams on the same pace and team mates eager to race each other!

  23. Michael S says:

    Webber needed to move over once it was clear Vettel had the run and was ahead of him… by holding his line a wreck was inevitable…. Vettel had no were to go.. to the left was grass and a big off and to the right was his teammate playing chicken with him…. We have seen Webber be ruthless with track position so many times over the years… Alonso at Suzuka, Kimi at Brazil, Rubens in Germany… sometimes when you are being passed you have to be an adult, especially with your teammate.

    1. Freespeech says:

      Rubbish, Webber was fully entitled to hold station, they’re not kids are they :?:

      1. Flintster says:

        I’ll second that…..

    2. Neil Kenward says:

      adult? agreed, “needed to move” disagreed.
      Webber wasn’t squeezing him, if Vettel had stuck to his line he would have arrived in the corner first, albeit on the dirty side of the track and would have struggled to make the turn, but he was on the inside so Mark would have had to avoid turning into him and hope he overshot it.
      Seb moved over to stop that happening, Mark merely refused to let him play that game – crunch.

      1. Freespeech says:

        Agreed

    3. N. Machiavelli says:

      “Webber needed to move over once it was clear Vettel had the run and was ahead of him…”

      You’ve obviously never competed in motorsport. I have.
      When you’re in the lead you defend your position
      unless there is a compelling reason to let a competitor
      through, and the fact that a competitor is trying to pass
      is NOT a compelling reason. Otherwise, it wouldn’t be
      called RACING …

      Webber was in first place, a place Webber had EARNED by
      qualifying first and driving well. And after all that Webber
      was supposed to simply move over ? The only case in which
      that should happen is where the driver in second place needs championship points and the driver in first place is not in contention for the championship, and the end of
      the season is near. This case today does not fit those criteria. Vettel screwed up a race which could have done much to help Red Bull finish the season as victors in both the driver’s and constructor’s championships. Worst of all,
      Vettel may have damaged Webber’s one and only chance to
      win a WDC, because though Vettel is young, Webber is nearing “retirement age” in F1.

      Vettel is lucky he didn’t do this to me, because I’d have
      punched him out in the pits.

      1. **Paul** says:

        Just to correct you, Webber wasn’t in 1st place, he was in 2nd with a good 80% of his car fully behind Sebs….

      2. Gareth says:

        If that was true then why did sebs rear wheel hit marks sidepod?!?!

      3. Michael S says:

        thank you Paul.. that is correct… I am not saying Webber was not free to fight on, but at that point he made life extremely tough for his teammate…. the only result by him not budging would be contact at one point… it’s not like Vettel could back out of his move once he was 80% ahead of Webber

      4. N. Machiavelli says:

        “Just to correct you, Webber wasn’t in 1st place, he was in 2nd with a good 80% of his car fully behind Sebs….”

        Excuse me, but I have to laugh.

        The above is some of the most twisted logic I’ve seen
        in a long time. It is also wrong, as anyone who knows
        racing can tell you.

        Take a look at the poll in this blog, and notice that c. 80% of the respondents blame Vettel for the collision with Webber. Those 80% are correct, because it is incumbent on the driver attempting the pass to ensure
        his car doesn’t hit the car he is trying to pass. It is NOT
        the responsibility of the driver who is leading to allow
        the pass ! And that is why it’s called RACING, instead of
        ballroom dancing.

        Vettel had not made good his passing maneuver and therefore first place was not yet Vettel’s. That was made manifestly obvious when Vettel’s car collided with
        Webber’s car, and Vettel was unable to finish the race.

      5. Michael S says:

        Go to F1-live and more blame Webber

  24. luciano says:

    James – two questions…

    Were you surprised by Horner’s comments after the race? After all they seem to imply that Mark should have given Seb more room, while almost all commentators are saying it was clearly Seb’s fault.

    Secondly, is there anything in the rumour that Webber had been told to turn his engine down and Seb had been told to turn it up?

    1. James Allen says:

      Slightly, yes. But he was remembering who pays his salary. As for the engine thing, time (and digging) will tell

      1. N. Machiavelli says:

        “As for the engine thing, time (and digging) will tell”

        If it’s true the above orders to change engine management settings were given to Webber and Vettel, then Red Bull deserve to lose for trying to “stage-manage” the finish of the race by attempting to arrange for their ( favored boy ) Vettel to win despite the fact that Webber has outperformed Vettel in several races in a row.

        If I were Webber, I’d be looking for another team to join,
        in order to get away from the poor “race craft” of Vettel
        and the favoritism Red Bull seem to be showing toward
        Vettel.

        Perhaps the events of today were directed by Mateschitz
        himself, but in any event there is room for improvement in Red Bull’s team management, provided their goal is winning.

      2. Dave Roberts says:

        I couldn’t agree more! Webber is a man’s man who takes the rough with the smooth with simple logic. I cannot believe the extent of Horner’s one eyed view of this incident. I hope when he looks in the mirror tomorrow to shave he feels ashamed of himself.

        I think there will be one or two teams preparing to make an approach when they hear this.

      3. Marybeth says:

        “As for the engine thing, time (and digging) will tell”
        RB has been telling us they have no 1st driver, they are equal. We are about to find out. If it is true, I hope that Webber can get a good ride somewhere else, & that Kimi does not go there. He had to go thru Massa being the favored one at Ferrari, no need to do it twice.

      4. Andy says:

        So if Webber needs to go to fuel saving mode because he might otherwise run out of fuel, Vettel must go too just to be fair? Just because the other driver gets different directions than the other does not mean that the team is trying to “stage-manage” the race.

        Just a general note, I can’t claim to know what Red Bull’s motives were in this particular case.

      5. Flintster says:

        To be fair to Red Bull, the whole did Vettel have more rev’s seems fine to me, the pace off the race was greater than expected, naturally Weber was being pushed by Hamilton will Vettel sat ready and waiting… I have no issue with that – luck of the draw in my book….

    2. Drez says:

      While I have no problem with Vettel being the ‘future’ of Red Bull (no offense Mark), this blatently pro stance is starting to grate.

      Hope this dosn’t end up in webber not having his contract renewed.

    3. CH1UNDA says:

      May be webber was carrying a problem (fuel saving?) and thus the team orders – which would only make his resistance to the pass weird. However if it was old fashioned team orders ala Michael Schumacher, then maybe the theory that Horner’s age not being that much more than Webber’s is a real concern to the team principal – he probably wants a younger team that he can control more easily.

      Autosport reports that Webber was saving fuel. The question is why wasnt Vettel saving fuel as well? In the second stint he was the one racing Lewis so it was likely him using more fuel. Horner’s explanation is not convincing – McLaren had the same problem and both cars were ordered to save fuel even though Button had not raced anybody all race until the time of the order to save fuel. As Martin Brundle noted in the commentary, McLaren was not saving fuel going by their lap times and it follows that neither were the red bulls. Dig, James, dig.

  25. Phil says:

    As I fan of both the truth is they both got about what they deserved! Seb caused the contact, Mark created the situation. And they both did what they tend to do when racing people. Great race anyway.

    1. dean says:

      You’ve got it spot on Phil.

  26. Tom Weaver says:

    Maybe I have too much of a rosy view of these things, but given Webber followed Vettel around Sepang after losing at the start, shouldn’t Vettel have accepted his fate and done the same.

    Yes he was quicker at the time, and alongside, but you want to be damn sure you’re going to make a pass stick, especially on your team mate.

    I clearly don’t have the “walk over anyone and everyone in your path” mentality that it seems to take to be an F1 world champion, but I would’ve thought the team protocol had been set that if you’re behind you suck it up and hold station.

    1. TDiddy says:

      Agreed

    2. Knuckles says:

      Well, FWIW Helmut Marko said that Hamilton would have passed moth RBRs if Webber had been allowed to slow Vettel. (Reference: RTL interview after race, link is further up)

    3. Marybeth says:

      When asked about Vettel’s pass in Sepang, Mark said that he did not think that carbon fiber with Red Bull written on it flying all around was a good idea. A very mature, responsible response. SV does not seem to be able to think that way.

  27. Babi says:

    why on earth would Button try to overtake while the team had just instructed both to save fuel.
    Glad at least Hamilton didnt take it seating. He had to show who is boss:). brilliant race!

  28. Mikko Ahlapski says:

    James,

    This is extraordinary. The pressure has finally got to the young Vettel. He’s not used to be playing second fiddle.

    I think he should keep his head, live to fight for another day. It is still a long way to go. you have good days and bad days, Right ???

  29. JD says:

    The critical difference between the McLaren drivers’ duel and the Red Bulls’ is that the McLarens didn’t have rival team cars breathing down their necks. It is easier to duel with a teammate when there is no pressure coming from behind.

    To let teammates race each other while both are being pressured from behind is the absolute wrong call. Even if there is no contact, dicing compromises the pace of both cars and increases the wear-and-tear as teammates are forced to push the limits.

    Perhaps Hamilton would have passed both Red Bulls even if there was no contact. How may times have we seen the third car in the train pass the two in front as a result of the scrum?

    The mistake was make on the pit wall. Red Bull needed to manufacture team orders so that their two drivers kept in a stable situation while Hamilton and Button were on their tailpipes. The best way for the two Red Bulls to keep the McLarens behind would be to run clean laps as fast and efficiently as possible. Only if they had a manageable gap should the Red Bulls been allowed to race.

  30. James says:

    I’m a huge fan of Mark Webber’s, but I support both RB drivers, and I see it as just a racing incident. Vettel squeezed into a gap a car wide, and Webber left no room for error from either of them. A gamble from both of them, but that’s racing.
    I don’t really see RB being anything other than supportive of Vettel, and I admire Webber for having his diplomatic head on when he was asked about the incident. He can’t really afford to make waves in the team as RB wouldn’t exactly be upset at the prospect of Vettel being their lead driver with Alguersuari as the number 2. Webber isn’t a long-term option for them, so they are likely to support Vettel, particularly if he’s being eyed up by Mercedes. Interesting times ahead for Mr Horner.

  31. Dan says:

    This is Seb’s doing.

    The truth is that even though he had the inside line, he was going to fast to make the corner from that angle. He made an error in judgement, and tried to force Mark out of the way so that he could rectify his angle of trajectory.

    As has been reported, Christian Horner asked: “Where was the room?”

    As Martin said, Mark gave Seb a “Red Bull’s worth of room”. He did not owe him anymore.

    Seb has shown in his post-race body language that he does not take failure/losing well. Today he displayed the immaturity underlying that body language.

    1. True Blue says:

      That is the best take on the incident.
      I also thought Vettel was going too fast.
      Although he has a cheery smile when cameras are on him , he knows and acts like somebody has told him he is no.1 in that team.
      I dont know how Mark can live in that team now horner has showed his true colours

  32. Miha says:

    First of all, this must have been the best race of the season so far, and it didn’t even rain. I don’t remember the last time I saw four drivers actually RACING for P1 in a dry race, and I’m following F1 since I was 10 years old in the late 80′s.

    Regarding lap 41. Vettel was so much faster at that point that at least he HAD to try to get past. The questions is, if it was necessary to go all the way no matter what. It’s true Webber didn’t leave him any room, but than again… why should he? (it’s true McLaren drivers showed each other much more maturity and respect)

    Vettel is my favorite driver after Kimi left, but I’m in serious doubt if he is prepared to be a champion this year. I think he’s got to much pressure by german media to be the youngest champion ever, plus I think Webber surprised everybody with his recent form.

    Hope Vettel can get out of this situation soon. If he will be forced to play second driver at the end of the season and help Webber, it won’t be good for his self-esteem.

    A race to remember!

  33. senzo says:

    Michael has beaten Nico 3 times
    in a row now, the silence of those
    who were calling his comeback a
    mistake is deafening

    1. James Allen says:

      Shows what a fickly business this is..

    2. JD says:

      The worst part is that the defending constructors champions are so far behind the two leading teams and Kubica’s Renault is breathing down their necks.

    3. HowardHughes says:

      I agree. I’m loving that fact that after the Red Bulls & McLarens, which are clearly in a different league to the other teams, who’s the fastest driver of all?

      Step forward Michael Schumacher. Great stuff.

    4. Sunburntgringo says:

      With Schumacher, I will always assume it is team orders. Once Michael’s fate is decided, Nico will be allowed to race, maybe.

    5. Flintster says:

      Ohh I dont know, Legard keeps taking a swipe…. Un-just I might add…. he still has is, the first lap was spot on with the overtake on button…(I know he was on the clean side all the same)

  34. Chris says:

    What I don’t understand is how Webber can be expected to leave room for Vettel.

    Webber left a small channel down the inside, there is not even the obligation to do this. Drivers often pull fully to the inside and leave no room at all.

    When one car overtakes another, there is no obligation for the overtaken car to suddenly give the overtaker more space.

    Kimi vs Michael Brazil 2006 showed how hard racing is meant to be done and that was all under braking. No arguments from either driver.

    btw Horner talking about leaving space is a moot point. This only applies if one driver chops another approaching the apex. Here, they were both driving in a straight line. The “space” existed until Vettel stupidly drove into Webber.

    Actually, Vettel was lucky not to get a penalty. A backmarker (Chandhok) was chopped like this not long ago and the lapper got penalised.

    1. Knuckles says:

      You can close the gap if it is not yet occupied, but you can never close the gap fully if someone else already occupies the space. But yes, Webber left just enough room, as was his right under the regulations (team orders are a different topic). But with Vettel being more than alongside, it should have been clear to Webber that any tiny problem, such as a wobble by Vettel on a bump, could spell disaster for both. In my book they both were being boneheaded.

    2. Gareth says:

      Spot on. Exactly my argument. How anybody could think this is Webbers fault is beyond me.

      Red Bull seem to me, if reports of Horner siding with Vettel are true, are giving everything to make Vettel successful. Why would they tell Webber to save fuel and not to Vettel?

      I reckon behind the scenes Vettel has been throwing his toys out of the pram and as he’s the best long term option, and as Red Bull have invested so heavily in him, they want to keep both sides sweet.

      It’s Barrichello and Schumacher all over again.

    3. Nick F says:

      I just watched the whole incident again. The BBC F1 forum showed it in super slow-mo. At the point the contact happened the 2 cars were just before the 150m board. I’m very interested to know the point they break for that corner. James, could you possibly find out? I’m assuming that therefore they had 50-100m before they had to be all the way over to the right side of the track to break for the corner. if they weren’t at least some way over to the right then they would have both had a terrible entry to the corner and I assume would have lost a huge chunk of time leading to Hamilton and Button being right on top of them (supposing that that didn’t lead them to crash into each other during or after breaking).

      1. James Allen says:

        The braking distance for Turn 12 is 118 metres, according to brake supplier Brembo

      2. Nick F says:

        Wow. OK so then they really didn’t have many seconds left before they needed to first move over and then brake. I assume that Vettel would have had to brake earlier than the 118 metres because he was going to be on the unused dirty part of the track. This is why Vettel wanted to force Webber across, but he miscalculated and it all ended in disaster.

        Thanks for the reply James. Interesting info. :-)

  35. Peter says:

    I think Hamilton was a bit surprised and taken aback when Button tried passing him having just seen what happened to the Red Bull’s and both cars apparently being in procession, fuel saving mode. Great great race but apparently the rumours are from the BBC is that Christian Horner is favouring Vettel in all of this. And Webber said on the journalists have to dig deeper to see what is really going on. I think he feels really peeved about the team.

    Seems that all the other cars behind were just driving normal atandard races! Schumacher drove a solid race to get 4th. Best of the rest no doubt! In the end though – what a race. Haven’t seen one like that where 4 cars sped off and raced their own race in the most thrilling tense circumstances! Brilliant!

  36. Neil Kenward says:

    I see this as a continuation of the fall out from Malaysia, that has propelled Webber to the front. He has decided not to move out of Vettel’s way.
    I think Seb and Christian have now learned what this really means.
    It will be interesting to discover if Mark’s title challenge will be allowed to continue.

    Also, I’ve never seen anyone look quite as subdued as Lewis on the top step of the podium, there may be trouble ahead…

  37. Tommy K. says:

    Well, after watching closely many times the replays of the incident, I have to say that Webber is not in the normal racing line, obviously protecting his lead. But having said that, he didn’t seem willing to get back to racing line at any point!!!! He just keeps his line even when Seb WAS half a car in front. Seb had to go right at some point becoz he was on the dirty side and eventually he lost it. Webber’s fault for not giving any room at all to Seb. I wonder though, what Mark was thinking?? By keeping the line he had, he wouldn’t be able to make the turn anyway!!!! The McLarens would have passed even without the crash…Poor thinking…

    1. JD says:

      Clearly being on the dirty line, Seb could have backed out of it, fallen in line, and passed at a later time. It’s not like it would have been his only chance and it wasn’t the last lap of the race. Why put it all on the line with so many laps left?

      1. CH1UNDA says:

        apparently he had to take the position on that lap as he was also going into fuel saving mode on the next – what is this with fuel saving now being the main excuse for switching driver positions.

      2. JD says:

        The key word is “lap.” The fuel advantage was for a lap, not just one corner. There would have been passing opportunities later in the lap and probably into turn 1 as well. No need for a all-out move for glory at that point.

        Vettel himself stated he lost control prior to the collision. If a driver of Vettel’s talent loses control of the car while attempting to pass, then the pass itself was never really on.

        The smarter driver would have kept the car in control and if the pass didn’t happen, set up another attempt later in the lap.

    2. f1jocker12 says:

      vettel attacked on the inside predicting that, at some point, webber will move right to keep the ideal line… but webber knew that such a move will make loose the lead… so they fight… who engaged in the first lace? vettel… webber knew that vettel didn’t have too much room for the maneuver and locked him hard… that’s why horner was praying for a move…

      in comparison… buttons attack was on outside… with beter chance to back off in case of a similar response from hamilton…

      anyway, button and vettel fought more for psychological advantage inside the team, over their teammates, rather than few more points in the hierarchy…

  38. PaulL says:

    Japan 2007 all over again :(

  39. Richard M says:

    I have never been a big fan of Vettel’s, he is good when in the lead and is dominating but he is not in a million miles in the same class at overtaking as Button and Hamilton and even Webber, the only way he can win races is from pole or leading from the first corner. I think it is clear that Red Bull want Vettel to win the championship and not Webber as there is rumours that Webber was told to turn down his engine and I am sure that if Webber had rammed into Vettel the team would not of been as chummy to him as they were to Vettel when it was clearly his fault.
    On a differen note I think Hamilton and Button both drove very well and are very closley match in raw pace with Button perhaps quicker than Hamilton today. There duel was exciting and fair, don’t understand Hamilton not expecting it when there was still a few laps to go but doubt it will cause any problem because he described Button as the best team mate he has ever had.

    1. Matt says:

      Button quicker than Hamilton? Erm…

  40. patrick(uk) says:

    THOUGH mclaren got a desrved win ..it is obvious that red bull clearly wanted vetel to win the race simply by piting vetel early so that he would leap frog weber and hamilton when they pited.THERE WAS no reason why VETEL pited first BEFORE WEBER.this action brought him closer to the two leaders.ALSO JUST BEFORE the weber /vetel incident it seemedd weber was loosing time and vetel was catching up. it seems odd but apprently weber is rumoured to have been told to tone down his engine but vetel was not.SOMETHING IS NOT right at red bull .

  41. Freespeech says:

    Vettel can’t overtake, he’s fast, really fast but he’s not Hamilton is he?
    There seems to be a rumour that Webber was told to turn his engine down and Vettel told to turn his up, if true it proves how Redbull are favouring Vettel, they clearly don’t have the same faith with Mark Webber.
    Lewis looked rather strange at the end and not happy, maybe his faltering relationship with his father is playing on his mind more than we know, what do you think James?

    1. CH1UNDA says:

      Lewis dedicated the win to his dad for his 50th birthday – so that is definitely not where the problem is. He probably was suspicious of the real intentions of McLaren telling him that both cars were saving fuel only to find Button hustling him for position. You can bet he is going to be more aggressive with Button in the future.

      1. Freespeech says:

        If all was well with his Dad I reckon he and Lewis’s brother would have been there, they weren’t :!:
        Seems to me that Lewis was sending a message to his Dad through the TV maybe :?:

        Any views James :?:

      2. James Allen says:

        Thinsg have been a bit strained. Anthony hasn’t been to a race this season yet

    2. Flintster says:

      Yeah – I noticed he didn’t seem that happy! You just won your first race of 2010 son…crack open the bubbly….!

      Concidering how much his Dad has supported and brought him into F1 – it does all seem rather strange – that said a talent of Lewis can hold his own….

    3. Matt says:

      I think the reason behind why Hamilton was subdued after the race was because a: He did’nt like the fact he was told him and Button both needed to turn their engines down and then suddenly Button went back into race mode. Probably just a misunderstanding or Button being oppurtunistic and b: he wanted to win on his own merit and not by attrition.

  42. pete Isabelle says:

    I wouldn’t blame Vettel just yet, I suspect something back in the pit wall and garage has more to do with it, Webber tuning down to save his engine, maybe more suspected damage. Vettel been told to pass as Hamilton was catching to ensure a Red Bull win? All questions hopefully will be answer by Lee and Ted as they charm there way to Red Bull data.
    P

    1. Robert Higginbotham says:

      Something about Vettel’s gesticulation made me think that he felt that Webber wasn’t going to offer any resistance.

  43. Alen says:

    Hi James, what do you think about ‘save the fuel’ warning? Could it be that Mclaren wanted to prevent drivers from repating the Red Bull mistake and thus wisely acted on low fuel card? If they weren’t driving on low fuel we should assume that Mclaren have made a massive improvement.

    1. James Allen says:

      I think they had a communication mix up and Hamilton got the message before Button. McLaren are a great team but they have had plenty of communications problems over the years. I don’t sense a conspiracy, more likely a cock-up at race engineer level

      1. Kedar says:

        I somehow see this as being read by many as “Button’s official welcome to Hamilton’s team”.
        Its a shame that the Ferrari, isnt really competitive given that they stopped developing last years car mid season and focussed on this years car.

      2. Kyle H says:

        Button’s post race interview is quite insightful regarding the fuel conservation.

        Button: “I think from about lap 20 I was told to conserve fuel. I don’t think we expected the pace to be so quick. I was conserving fuel from a very early stage of the race. And Lewis was told about three laps before to conserve fuel”.

        Lee McKenzie: “So saving fuel isn’t a secret code for don’t race each other?”

        Button (laughing/smiling casually): “Well if it is nobody told me.”

        Also, we heard Button’s engineer on the radio commenting on how the expected rain could provide an opportunity for him to get past Hamilton (and potentially others too) at a stage of the race when according to Button, both drivers were already in a fuel saving mode.

        Basically it seems to me that Button – and his engineer at least – took the stance that in fuel saving mode he was still allowed to race for position against Hamilton.

        Hamilton on the other hand appeared to be taken aback by Buttons passing attempt as if he thought that the fuel saving mode/communication meant hold positions, no more racing between teammates.

        It’s certainly a questionable judgement call however, on the merit that had he made the pass stick against Hamilton, he would likely respond by “lighting the wick” and pushing for the remaining laps to regain the position whilst Button would push to hold it, compromising both drivers fuel consumption even more.

        Button received another order shortly after Hamilton had retaken his position that his fuel consumption was “critical” and subsequently backed off quite significantly.

        I can’t put Button at fault in the heat of the moment for attempting the pass, and it’s what we as viewers love to see, although I can understand why Hamilton seemed somewhat shocked by the move based on this.

      3. Aderac says:

        I agree, I think that we are used to ‘save fuel’ as being the hold position code word but in this instance it was meant as really save fuel, but you can still race!

      4. Nick F says:

        I reckon that’s a good summary of what probably happened.

        The FIA should get rid of the ban on team orders and then we wouldn’t all (including the drivers) have to bother with silly code words. Everyone would be clear on what was happening then.

      5. Glen says:

        I think there’s a asymetry in the Button/Hamilton fuel saving mode scenarios.

        Button said he was told much earlier on to save fuel, which given the length still to go would have meant don’t waste fuel getting racey behind someone your not going to pass easily, not meaning don’t try and overtake anyone. That mentality would have settled into his race brain over the laps. Hamilton seems to have been told fuel saving much later and been told it’s the same for both drivers. So he’s taking it to mean pretty much hold station.

        The result an easy but importantly clean pass for Button. The same was not true of Hamilton’s pass, he oversteered wide and bumped cars, not something the team would be happy about even without the earlier RBR incident.

        Not having had time for a de-briefing before being up on the rostrum I think Hamilton would be thinking he was probably in for a bit of a talking to for that.

  44. Nicholas Perkins says:

    Talk of fuel mix “team orders” worry me more than anything. It would seem strange that Mark would be asked to conserve fuel at this stage of the race, particularly if Seb was asked to move it up a notch.

    I would be very disappointed to find out that this was an attempt by the team to get Seb past Mark. Does this mean Mark has no real chance at the championship because Seb has been crowned No 1 at RBR? Time will tell…

  45. richard hughes says:

    Very interesting race. Great to see the silver cars matching the red bulls for speed at the front.

    Looks like LH was pee’d off that JB tried it on after they had been told to hold position.

    Great blog James – keep it up.

  46. Stuart Fenton says:

    The BBC forum got into this hardcore style, ted did a great job to look into the engine mix thing. It does appear that Sebby V is RBR golden boy and Mark is number 2. Will this affect the future partnership? Maybe Webber to Ferrari could pick up more steam as a result. It would be interesting, Alonso’s McLaren experience could give him and Webber a certain type of affinity. Both having experienced a feeling of neglect at a team. Im more interested in the McLaren fuel saving thing, was it code for “remain as you are”?

    1. Robert Higginbotham says:

      How did you get to see the forum? The tennis was all that I could see!

  47. Miha says:

    One more thing from me: Does anybody know if Vettel and Webber actually reached the braking point when they touched each other or were they still at full speed at the time. Did Vettel lose his car when he started braking?

    1. James Allen says:

      Webber has confirmed that they were still some way from the braking point when they touched

      1. Flintster says:

        Its interesting to hear Vettel say ‘I lost it’ to some way imply he didn’t mean to move sharply to the right….!

        We can only take his word….

  48. Oz says:

    Vettel will still win favour from the Red Bull management as he is a product of their development program.
    Anyone else noticed Christian Horner at the side of Vettel’s car before the race could start??

  49. Dominic Johnson says:

    My take (when watching live) was that Webber began to move over to the outside, to take the more natural angle for the left hander, but then changed his mind and straightened up again (wouldn’t go so far as to call it “two moves”) and that Vettel saw him moving right and did the same to get the best possible angle for himself (and probably didn’t realise Mark had only “jinked” right, rather than actually move to the outside).

    If that’s right, then it’s Vettel’s fault, but a forgiveable mistake.

    I’m sure Red Bull have the data on who moved how far and when, but the replays do show Webber straightening up, having moved a little to the outside, which caught Seb by surprise.

  50. david says:

    Is it true that the Red Bull team has an internal policy of no overtaking between team-mates after the pit-stop?
    If so, that adds another level of depth to this accident. How do other teams (if they do) regulate overtaking among team-mates?

  51. Andrew says:

    Hi James

    Good race which raised a few interesting points:

    - Brundle said something along the lines of Vettel never having been very good at overtaking, all his wins have come from leading out front

    - Anthony Davidson on BBC F1 forum reckoning that Lewis Hamilton was speaking as ‘great little politician’ – what’s really going at McLaren under all the PR? (confusion over tactics before podium in discussion between drivers, and muted celebrations by Lewis afterwards). Also Eddie Jordan reckons the whole ‘low fuel’ Mclaren story is nonsense…

    - The Red Bull conspiracy; whose engine was turned up/down, do they favour Vettel?
    It looks the case, and with the ‘hugging’ going on at the Reb Bull pit lane with Vettel afterwards.

    - Ferrari dropping dramatically off the pace – perhaps a return to the ‘spaghetti culture’ as Lauda put it in previous years (ie. Ferrari in a disorganised mess).

    I thought the Red Bull crash was clearly Vettel’s fault – the pressure was obviously getting to him, and with a possible ‘turned up’ engine, took away the teams easy 1-2. Vettel actually driving into the side of Weber, rather than just simply running out of room – something which he also did to Lewis Hamilton earlier in the race! (with lesser consequences).

  52. Chris R says:

    Really entertaining, but it’s a byproduct of the whole ‘there’s no number 1 driver, we want them to compete and spur each other on’.

    You cant say that without accidents like this happening. And so it happened, obviously it will put pressure on the whole team because if Red Bull fail this season, things like this will be to blame.

    I just hope this doesnt put Webber off his form, I can see how it could end up polarizing some people in the team.

  53. Mickha says:

    The incident reminds me the 2007 Japan GP collision between these two driver during safety car situation.

    Recall that, Webber said ‘it was stupid move blabla’ i remember. It was quite interesting to wait and see what Webber gonna say after today race. He sounds like frustrated but moderated?

    From yesterday post press conference, i worried that these two drivers might be same situation what the Senna and Prost did each other as the circumstance from both in Redbull team and Championship had been changed a bit by bit since Spain.

    it’s good to watch for us how this gonna end but obviously it is really a big task for Redbull management.

    thanks, interesting article as usual, James.

  54. Matt W says:

    Whilst Vettel did move to the right before he was clear of Webber, I’d call it 50/50 as you have to wonder whether Webber should have pushed his team mate so close to the grass. I can’t say I’d blame either driver, sometimes in racing these things just happen.

  55. Jonathan Dye says:

    Horner has clearly made his mind up when he was caught in the pit lane. In Horner’s mind Webber should had given his blue eyed boy more room and the position, and therefore the win. Vettel is clearly viewed as the number 1 in Red Bull by the management and Webber’s run of good form is an unfortunate side effect of having one of the best cars.
    I wonder if this will have an effect on driver contracts which last week were just a formality? Will Red Bull still want Mark as much, and Mark still want Seb Bull… sorry, Red Bull as much?

  56. Oliver N. says:

    Fantastic stuff, nothing like a powder keg to focus the attention. In my opinion Vettel’s fault, he turned into Webber without question, and I doubt would have stopped it before the corner anyway, so a bit ambitious really, but I think Webber would have pulled out of the defence if it had been anyone else and done the cut-inside-in-the-corner-type-of-move. Still this wasn’t a race, it was a p*****g contest for the Red Bull drivers and I’m not sure who won it. I’m looking forward to the inevitable rematch, and sincerely hope that Horner fails in his attempt to reign them in. For me excitement levels in F1 have rarely been higher than the Senna/Prost duels and I am keen to see it again.

    Excellent use of the word ‘fratricide’ by the way. Nice.

  57. Paul says:

    We are often told how good Sebastian Vettel is, but I am yet to be convinced. He’s certainly a fast driver, but it seems that he only does well in races where he does not have to overtake ie. starting from pole. When he finds himself out of position on the starting grid with a fast car he appears to have trouble making forwards progress. What is your opinion?

    1. James Allen says:

      I think he still has some maturing to do. But he’s a great talent, no doubt. We expect a lot from these guys and he’s found himself in the pace setting car very early in his career. The pressure is great because Vettel is expecting to beat Webber and it isn’t happening

      1. Steve W says:

        Totally agree, Vettel is far from the finished article. When he is out in front is is very good indeed, but still remained unconvinced on his abilities in fighting back from behind. I’ve been particularly unimpressed with his behaviour in wheel to wheel combat this season. He was very naughty in China in weaving towards Hamilton in the pitlane, and in Turkey today he caused the accident by moving across on Webber, having already done exactly the same to Hamilton at the same part of the track earlier in the race. I think his behaviour is quite dangerous, and someone needs to have a word with him about it.

      2. hesus says:

        I have to agree. Seb seems to be a very nice guy, but sometimes there is something in his eyes that scares me. I think on track he is in some kind of “you shall not pass” mode or “the track is mine YOU have to move”. It’s no good for the future. And the accident reminds me Australia 2009 when he deliberately or not ruined his race crashing into Kubica in similar circumstances (the position was lost and he couldn’t take it). James thanks for great stuff by the way.

      3. James Allen says:

        Well he’s not the first F1 driver with that mindset

      4. hesus says:

        “Well he’s not the first F1 driver with that mindset”
        It’s clear, this kind of attitude makes you a f1 champ but you have to support it with maturity, experience and some skill. Seb is going to be a champion but Webber showed that it may not be that easy in 2010.
        But after analysing the race once again I feel sorry for Mark. In my opinion this was the race of truth, when the sponsors an owners of Red Bull wanted the “normal” order to be back.
        I think the plan was to switch positions during the pits (Mark gave us a hint with his statement about his mechanics being not too fresh this afternoon) but either because of mclaren pace or other it didn’t work out. So they tried the “fuel saving” option…
        The body language of Horner, Vettel and others makes me think that they knew what order should be on the finish line. The only problem was one stubborn Aussie who didn’t do what he was supposed to do. The question is did he do it on purpose?

  58. mik says:

    Sad to see this happening to RBR, but there are some conspiracy theories around the net talking about JB/LH having different instructions/information from their team radio.

    Discussions around the internet seem to put SV at fault for the incident as he was too optimistic about his overtaking, and that MW has no fault or nearly no fault at all.

    In my view, I think Mark knew that he could have done some thing to avoid all of this. That was evident, to me, during post-race interviews and his body language. During the race, I thought MW was too much on the left side of the straight. He probably had Malaysia race in mind at that time to stop SV from overtaking. I think this was a very unfortunate accident.

    Breaks my heart.

    But I hope after all of this, SV will harden up and become a better racer. The 2010 Championship will be SV’s if he can improve.

  59. kbdavies says:

    James, this is what im trying to understand. According to you “Shortly before this battle Hamilton had been told to “save fuel” and was informed that Button was doing likewise.”
    If so, why was Button still on the attack, and overtook Hamilton? It seems there was some confusion with both drivers being told different things before the overtakes.

    I believe McLarren were quite lucky not to go the Red Bull route. They could both easily have lost their front wings, and they both clashed tyres and front wings.

    1. Canadian F1 Fan says:

      IT’S A RACE!

      Who cares if you are saving fuel, the goal is to win. That is why they are paid so highly. If you can pass, pass. FA did that to Massa in pit lane and was applauded for it.

      Good on Button

      1. Mike from Medellin, Colombia says:

        Hamilton was not racing Button when he was caught up and overtaken.

        In any case, Hamilton quickly overtook Button and owned him after that.

      2. Canadian F1 Fan says:

        “Was not racing Button?” So was he still in the Grand Prix or not? It IS a race, from green to chequered, if he was napping, then so be it, but the move was entirely legit. Nice to see them fight a bit.

        As for after, they both went into heavy fuel saving mode… hardly “owned.”

      3. Andy C says:

        Well said. I can’t believe for a second mclaren want to cheese off hamilton or that there are any stitch ups going on.

        Button nailed a pass, Hamilton nailed him back. That’s racing. Nobody has a god given right to track position.

        James,
        I was quite interested to see lewis and mark whispering in the press conf. Lewis was showing with his hands what he thought that vettel came across webber. The gesture was so pronounced he nearly knocked marks squash over.

  60. Ricky says:

    Madness by Vettel. He was not fully past and why should Webber move out of the way for him? Webber has the right to be on the track and instead of holding ground Vettel swerved into him. Lunacy. Fair play to McLaren, they capatilised on it nicely and their two drivers later showed how you are supposed to race wheel-to-wheel. Also a fine race for Schumacher who is quickly looking to be the best of the rest. Looking forward to Canada now – I will be in attendance!!

  61. Deane says:

    No suprise to hear H.Marko coming down on the side of Vettel on German TV interviews. The team is, despite posturing, even more bias toward one driver than Mercedes is.

    I assume Mark W is pretty much a Red Bullocks lame duck now. Win the championship despite em mate and then retire and spill the beans on all their little tricks.

  62. S.J.M says:

    Funny how in F1, there isnt such thing as a straight win. There always seems to be some controversy or conspiracy theories or such floating about. Not that im complaining, I revealing in all of this as it makes it a damn sight more exciting.

    Well done our Brits for the 1-2. I dont know what was said over the radio’s about Fuel warnings or whatever, but its the result that counts. Both Jenson and Lewis must be looking at Canada with an eye for another win which looks very realistic. And with a month between now and the next curcuit to suit the RedBulls (e.g. Valencia), it will be interesting to see if the Mclaren development can bridge the gap for those kind of curcuits.

    As for my view of the Vettel/Webber crash, its on Vettels sholders. He clearly moved into Webber who didnt need to yield at that point, and has got a lot of explaining/making up to do for Mark and RB.

    Great race mind.

  63. Gaspar says:

    I think it’s just a misjudgement from Vettel . He thought that Webber it’s just simply will make room from him , like in Malaysia just because they teammates . He was pushed by the very inside of the track , Webber was in the middle , so nobody was in the racing line , and sure he can expect that Weber will pull back on the racing line , but Webber hold his line and that was it . Definitely Vettel didn’t try the same thing if there was anybody else then his teammate . He rely too much of Webber “gentlesness” .

  64. Alan says:

    James, Have you heard anything of the rumour doing the rounds that in the few laps before the Red Bull incident, Vettel was told to turn the wick up on his engine whilst Webber was told to turn the wick down?

    On the additional BBC Red Button coverage, Ted came on with the lap time sheets which showed that, in the three laps before the crash, Vettel very suddenly started going two, three, four tenths faster per lap than Webber.

    On a side note, is anyone else beginning to think we could be in for a full season without a full starting grid?

  65. Chris says:

    I hope the FiA do an investigation into team orders and thus help to vindicate Webber.

    Really hate this RBR team now. I hate any team that does team orders. I mean if you have a pushover #2 driver its understandable, but Webber is WDC leader and leading the race. Even if he’s having a really bad day and holding everyone up, why should he move over?

    RBR tried it on and they paid the price. And yet they slap Vettel on the back and the only language they express is about Webber (leaving more room). Disgusting.

    Maybe the FiA should even make a big announcement and reiterate that team orders are not acceptable. That teams should not attempt to pressure their drivers and that drivers should not feel pressured into complying with them.

    Team orders today destroyed RBR race and they almost destroyed McLaren race too because it seems that Lewis thought they had an agreement too.

    Team orders are just bad, bad, bad. FiA should support drivers who resist them. They are bad for the sport. They always have so much negative fallout. The only positives are for the “team” (i.e. multi-million/billion dollar corporations and their sponsors) and for #1 status drivers at the expense of other drivers and all the fans, and with the risk of cr@p like happened today.

    Funny thing is to see how Ferrari never give them anymore, like with Alonso being stuck behind Massa several times this year.

  66. JoeyC says:

    Vettel’s fault “for sure”.

    He was barely half a length in front when he started to turn right. If he didn’t want to have such a bad line for the chicane he shouldnt have gone for the tiny gap on the left in the first place.

    Mark was hard but fair. Vettel either miscalucated the distance his car was ahead or simply thought Webber would automatically move right to make it easier for him to take the chicane (a stupid assumption). Like Wurz said this isnt “after you Sir”, this is F1. Webber gave Vettel just enough room but for some reason the young German thought it was his right to take more.

    Even if Vettel was a car length ahead, swerving across your teammate whilst approaching a braking zone is rarely a good idea. He did the same thing to Hamilton earlier in the race. Lewis literally had to take avoiding action, causing him to miss his braking point and run wide at the chicane. Vettel was being too agressive all race.

    1. Liam says:

      Agree with this completely

  67. Dan says:

    What has caused the most suspicion for me that something fishy is going on at RBR, is Horner stating that Webber was saving Fuel, hence being slower than Vettel. Yet Webber was right on it from the moment he came out with a new nose cone, till the end of the race.

    He had ~ 8 seconds to Schumacher, so he didn’t need to push that hard – seems proof enough to this lounge-room expert that the ‘Mark was saving Fuel’ excuse is bogus.

    I’m guessing it’s more complicated than this James, and you can set me straight?

  68. Deane says:

    I also think Ham and Vett are both being far too reliant on their teams being in their corner, in an era where lack of fuel stops means race wins have to be gained by superior skill or help from the team…

  69. P.Beenkens says:

    Any views from you James on the Ferrari’s lack of pace this weekend ?

    1. James Allen says:

      I will post on this early in the week

      1. P.Beenkens says:

        Great James, Thanks.Its clear Ferrari must react within the next 2 races if it wants to stay in the fight for the championship this year.

      2. Flintster says:

        I only hope Ferrari know because this is just depressing and Alonso is so miserable… as Martin mentioned in his commentary…. not happy!

  70. jack_faith says:

    doesn’t play well. Vettel’s gestures after the incident. It’s surprising they came together along the straight. For the incident to have happened where it did looks like Vettel’s fault, to me. Always hearing about how good Vettel is supposed to be. Hmmmmm. I don’t know I would quite put him in the same class as Alonso or Hamilton, yet. If Webber edges him in Canada for quali begs questions about Horner’s preference for Vettel. Also, for what its worth, Webber came across much better post-race than Seb. Great move from Hamilton to retake the lead. He’ll be thinking a little less kindly about Button now.

  71. MartinWR says:

    It looks very much as though Christian Horner was shouting at Mark Webber to move (over) as Vettel passed him. Mark is not unknown for exhibiting a certain degree of pig-headedness in these situations, and the result is history, he got a third when he could have had second. However he also ended up with a bigger lead over his team-mate than he might have done otherwise. The team didn’t do any too well out of it however.

    Clearly this result wasn’t the one in the Red Bull script. My guess is that the powers that be will be making it pretty clear to Mark just who the blue-eyed boy is in the team (not him) and not to rock the boat in future, or else. Perhaps all the recent hyped up nonsense about him becoming WDC has turned his head and made him forget his place in the greater scheme of things.

    It appears that the current code for letting your team-mate past, or win, or have the advantage, is: “save fuel”, i.e. by turning the revs down. In this context I note that Jense was told to “save fuel” right from the start, or so he has said, and Hamilton only at the end. That puts their last minute dice into quite a different context altogether.

    Clearly as always there is quite a lot that goes on behind the scenes in that great piece of theatre that is Formula One that will forever be hidden from us.

  72. Erik C says:

    I think it was a brilliant move by Vettel, he had to have a good result to stay on equal footing with Mark so he decided to make the pass. It is called a race after all, not a procession. The next time he is alongside he will get the respect and the room.

  73. Michael S says:

    There would be no passing in F1 if the driver in front simply”squeezed” the car trying to pass each time. If your argument is that once Vettel had the run on Webber that Mark had the right to make for a dangerous situation then when there be passing? If that was true the lead driver could simply slam the door on anyone who tried to pass and racing would be super boring…. We now know Webber knew Vettel was coming according to Horner and he decided to make it as hard as possible on Seb

  74. Mike from Medellin, Colombia says:

    I think that Vettel was out of order today and has been so several times this season. Remember the pitlane incident where he squeezed Hamilton?

    It was wrong of him to make public gestures on Webber’s mental state…I think that he knew what had really happened but wanted to publicly exhonerate himself by physically communicating with the crowd and Christian Horner.

    Vettel is without a doubt Bernie’s and Horner’s golden boy. It seems like his attitude is that Webber should only be allowed to win when he has a problem.

  75. Mike from Medellin, Colombia says:

    James, any comments on how Michael Schumacher is progressing? Is the tide turning for him? How impressed have you been?

  76. CanadianF1Nut says:

    I hope we learn what the RBR strategy was. Having SV turn up the wick, and MW turn down the wick can only lead to both cars being pushed heavily by McLaren.

    If these instructions were done independently by each race engineer, then that indicates a team communication/strategy problem. If it was done with co-ordination, then I question what the outcome was supposed to be in their mind. Was MW supposed to just pull over and let SV through?

    MW has every right to defend and keep his lead. SV has the responsibility as a team driver to first and foremost not sacrifice the team’s results on a dicey move.

    It will be interesting to watch how this affects the team dynamic. Christian Horner high tailing it to the airport after the race was probably a mistake. He should be settling this down so it’s not a distraction in Montreal.

    1. CanadianF1Nut says:

      From Autosport.com: Christian Horner
      “The large mistake remains that not enough room was given, and the explanation is there on how Sebastian had managed to get into the tow. He had managed to save an extra kilogramme of fuel – as both cars start the race with the same amount of fuel.”

      Sounds like Horner thinks Webber should have just gotten out of the way and let Vettel have the corner.

  77. TDiddy says:

    I noticed Vettel rolling his eyes and shaking his head while Mark was talking in the post-quali press conference. Is he really a team player?

  78. Call says:

    obviously nobody watched the slow motion in car webber….webber is steering to the right briefly, just before crash.

    1. Deane says:

      To the right? No problem then.

      1. Merc says:

        To the left, watch the in car footage of Webber. He actually steers to the left when Vettel is passing him and as a reaction vettel goed left and then suddenly loses control (damp track maybe).

        At first I thought it was Vettel’s fault, but study the footage and you will see Webber made one of this usual moves again which resulted in this.

        Unfortunately, English speaking fans always take the side of the English speaking driver and loath on the (especially) German drivers.

      2. Deane says:

        Actually English speaking ‘fans’ of F1 don’t do any such thing and you are just making lazy assumptions. People with brain cells and genuine love of F1 do not have time for Jingoism, no matter how much it fits your theory.

        You did say right initially, anyway.

  79. Robert says:

    Webber left plenty of room, he left the whole right side of the straight for Vettel to overtake, as Button did a few laps later. Is Vettel any good at overtaking? There hasn’t been much evidence to say he is. If Red Bull had Hamilton, Button or Alonso they would be out of sight

  80. Sharp_Saw says:

    Button paced himself behind Hamilton for a while and then when his tyres were working in better condition than the one’s on the leading car he overtook the leader and might have pulled away comfortably if he had maintained his lead.

    Following the race on live timing, Button was setting some serious first sectors consistently during the race. Button’s fastest lap was quicker than Hamilton’s. I will not be surprised if Button gradually gets better at qualifying. If this does happen, he could end up winning the WDC this year.

    Massa beat Alonso with the latter making up three places more during the race from a worse grid position.

    Mercedes didn’t impress in this race.

  81. Sam B says:

    Could be a turning point for Vettel—he could mature from this, or end up self-destructing. I’d rather it were the former because he’s a great talent, but the Red Bull management has got to let him grow up. His gesticulations after getting out of the car were really immature and uncalled for.

    I’m really interested to hear the developments about the team orders happening at RBR. I think Vettel is more to blame for the incident. But it seems the team—if they indeed had Webber on conserve mode and Vettel on fight mode in an effort to get the latter on the lead—have royally messed things up, too. If they want to make Vettel a champion, handing him the lead on a silver platter won’t work. He should learn how to fight for track position.

    Will be waiting to hear your report, James. Happy digging.

  82. dstaisey says:

    - Weber clearly moved left witch can be seen on the steering correction he did while Seb was popping out (inside camera with Weber).
    - It can also bee seen that Weber was way of to the left from the racing line – so was blocking
    Telemetry confirms Weber A. trajectory, B. Speed difference, C. His wheel correction
    So who should move, move?
    It is strange how from simple and clear thing like this, driver weit can be measured by the strength of his management and its relationship with media.
    Poor Vettel, it was frightening accident and could have been much worse. Was similar to Mansell in Imola 90 against Berger…

  83. Jon says:

    James can you please look into this..

    There is rumours circulating that Webber was told to turn his engine down, and Vettel was told to turn his engine up. Marko and Horner told German TV RTL that Mark was told to let Vettel through. Thus, Redbull are angry with Mark because they expected him to let Vettel through and not fight like that.

    What’s Webber supposed to do? He is currently leading the WDC, everyone seems to think Vettel was at fault, but the team are taking Vettel’s side. This is a news story if ever I heard one.

    I just want to know the truth.

    1. Knuckles says:

      Horner did not say this so clearly on RTL, and what Marko said was that Webber should have been told to let Vettel through in order to prevent Hamilton overtaking both, but communication from the race engineer to Webber was not what it should have been. I posted a link to a transcript further up in the comments.

  84. Alexis says:

    Any opinion on Hamilton’s sulking after the race James?

    Nobody really seemed to get the situation on the BBC post-race. It seemed pretty obvious to me – Hamilton was absolutely LIVID as he was under the impression being told to save fuel would mean holding station until the end of the race.

    Button suddenly appearing beside him was unexpected and took him completely by surprise. It seems plain to me that he is absolutely furious with the team for telling him to slow only in order to let Button attack.

    Seems to me the real civil war is within McLaren tonight, but they’ll be pretty relieved the attention is on Red Bull.

  85. Miss says:

    I’m totally appalled at how RB has hacked on Webber after the race. No class whatsoever.

  86. Richard Hoyland says:

    “shortly before this battle Hamilton had been told to “save fuel” and was informed that Button was doing likewise.”

    That is key. Lewis clearly went into fuel save mode but Jenson thought it would be a good idea to ignore team orders and take Lewis on. That is the only reason he was able to close the gap and Lewis seemed genuinely surprised. He could have ruined it for McLaren with his selfishness. If I was Martin Whitmarsh I’d be having words with him for that.

    1. Sunburntgringo says:

      Yeah Hamilton always follows team orders. Just ask Alonso.

      Schumacher Ferrari always got the team right when there was clear number one, second driver was always clearly second, RBR and MCL need to sort this out.

      Two fast drivers never works out well on top teams.

      My guess is that Constructor’s Championship matters more to them. As a fan, I care more about the driver. I say favor JB and MW and let the others deal with it.

  87. Flog says:

    Would blame Vettel based on what I saw on TV, thought what disturbs me is the strong rumours that Red Bull was trying to manipulate the result by giving the drivers different “fuel save” messages. Can’t think of any other reason for Honer’s pro-Seb stance, thinly hidden with his “make room” comment.

    Red Bull, very disappointing!

    James, will you post a follow-up on the engine/fuel rumour with Red Bull – assuming you get more info. Would be really interested.

  88. Henry says:

    Reading too much into the “Move,Move” comments by Horner immediately prior to the collision is a little dangerous.

    Vettel was alongside Webber and dangerously close to the grass/white line, it is only natural a team principal would want Webber to move over to ensure a collision did not occur (maximising RBR points).

    On another related topic, if the relationship between Webber/Vettel does break down, how much on a Kimi/Vettel partnership next year?

    1. Marybeth says:

      RB has been telling us they have no 1st driver, they are equal. Today it seemed that SV is coddled and MW hung out to dry. I hope that Webber can get a good ride somewhere else, & that Kimi does not go there. He had to go thru Massa being the favored one at Ferrari, no need to do it twice.

  89. neil says:

    Just look at the coverage on lap 18 when Hamilton got alongside Vettel. Martin Brundle’s comment is that Vettel “tries to scare the McLaren off the road”. Because he jinked right just like he did to Webber on lap 40. Vettel clearly tries to intimidate drivers to move over. Better to try that with someone other than Webber in future.

    Webber did squeeze Vettel, and Horner can be unhappy about as they are on the same team, However, Webber is entitled to squeeze him as he is in the car in front and has the pick of the track position. Squeezing him did not cause the crash. Vettel turning in on Webber did.

    To say that Webber should move over to let him on to the clean side of the track is absurd. It is for Vettel to make the move stick whether on the clean or dirty side.

  90. paddy says:

    Awesome race. Could mave been even better if Vettel didn’t crash into Webber. I think if Red Bull want to diffuse the situation they should send them both to the FIA. Formula 1 has changed teams have to provide an equal platform for BOTH of there drivers to race. So with that in mind i say take them to the stewards and tell both driver’s that yes amazing as it is you are responsible for your own actions and see what happens.

    There might be another story here James.
    Dietrich might want to call his good pal Bernie and ask for some money back on the advice he gave him about his driver(Vettel). At least the designer worked out for him. Think how important Red Bull’s success is to Formula1 ie. red bulls real rivals Coke, Diagago and Pepsi. Bernie needs his 21st century cigarette’s winning and winning a lot.

  91. adi says:

    What hasnt been said is that it was Vettels choice to go down the inside. Knowing that he needed to shut the door so webber didnt hang around the outside thus taking the inside line into turn 13 (like button on Lewis) he chose to force his way through. Im glad Webber has taken this stance cos it seemed to me he was very careful not to tread on any red bull toes early in the season. I think he has a few offers on the table for next year and is giving Seb Bull the two fingered salute. He has a car to compete for the title and hes not letting the spoon fed one have it his way. Also i think McLaren are trying very minutely to sabotage lewis racres. After his coments in melbourne and monaco to the team i believe they are going to teach lewis a lesson mcLaren style…under the radar.

  92. Anthony says:

    James, Im intrigued by the way Hamilton got to the podium, no celebrating with his hands in the car (as he always does), no jumping on the podium, no smile, no hugs to the team, no nothing. what are your theories?

    does he thinks it was not a deserved win? is he mad because button overtook him?

    1. Alexis says:

      Mad at the team for telling him to save fuel. He didn’t realise they’d let Button overtake him.

  93. Craig D says:

    Regarding the Red Bull crash I put Vettel at blame. Some people point that Webber didn’t give him enough space either, but Vettel had a car width and at that point they were still on the straight and so there was no reason why he should make more space.

    It wasn’t like a case of Webber not giving Vettel enough room to make a corner. It was up to Vettel to make the move and he shouldn’t have tried to play chicken and force Webber out the way, who had every right to hold his line. Vettel needed to stay left and wait for the corner (which ne knew he was too tight for and why he was trying to force himself back on line).

  94. drums says:

    “And yet they slap Vettel on the back…” Chris, I was about to comment the appealing image of SV pathetically going along RB wall looking for comfort and being slapped on the back by the line of RB engineers. (BTW, it remainded me of a comparable situation, other team, three years ago.)

  95. Nick Hipkin says:

    Hi James, great post again, do you think Christian Horner’s management has been found wanting? It certainly could have been handled better.
    Also Lewis Hamilton seems very unhappy with Jenson Button to me, very reminiscent of Villeneuve/Pironi in 82, I dont think all is as it seems with Lewis and Mclaren, do you know any more?

    1. Canadian F1 Fan says:

      I was thinking the same thing Nick, but the fact is you race from start to finish, regardless of fuel settings, etc. We all deplore “team orders,” and this was not a case of those. You must race the entire race, I wonder when anyone other than Schu or FA will grasp that concept?

  96. Miha says:

    I’ve just read that Webber had to change settings for his engine and started to conserve fuel. Vettel would have to do the same one lap later, so lap 41 was his only chance to get past Webber. This explains quite a lot, don’t you think, guys? Of course this is not excuse for the crash…

  97. alam says:

    From Webbers onboard cam angle its clear vettel did turn in, however webber stayed on course and it seemed he did not intend to move an inch to the right. In addition this this on vettels onbaord cam you can see 3/4′s of the car was ahead so he may have thought the overtake has stuck now a move over to the right to get ready for the left hander.

    What do you think of that theory James?

    1. ajag says:

      That is also my observation. Webber did not give an inch. I actually start to wonder if he had made the corner if there had been no contact.

      He and SV were on the dirty side of the track after all. I assume that SV realised he would need to get over to the racing line for the braking zone and thought he was passed Webber already.

  98. GGP says:

    The claim that Vettel was going into fuel saving mode a lap after Webber is ridiculous. If the straight line speed loss of Webber was due to the “fuel saving mode” then on the following lap Vettel would have also had a reduced top speed. Therefore the top speed differential to the Mclarens would have increased thus allowing Lewis and Jenson a chance to pass both Red Bulls. Once ahead the Mclarens could then easily have controlled the fuel saving pace as the only realistic passing opportunity was along the back straight where the Red Bulls were no match for them. Throughout the rest of the lap they would have been forced to go at Mclarens pace just as Weber had limited Lewis’s pace earlier in the race. I therefore find the Red Bull statement completely implausible. Especially considering that Webber had lost time to Vettel for 3 laps prior to the crash and not just lap prior.

    1. alam says:

      Horner said Webber was pushing so hard infront he had 1 lap less fuel then Vettel so thats why Webber was told to save earlier then Vettel. This statment was given to the bbc.

      I think a lot can be read into this situation, and furthermore if RB were pro vettel webbers last two wins prove otherwise.

  99. Brian says:

    All this nonsense just affirms my belief that single car teams should be allowed to play. A team could be run on half the money and all this politics could be a memory. Think of the racing we could then witness!

    1. Knuckles says:

      Two-car teams exist because most of your costs (factory, development, …) are fixed costs. Running just one car would certainly not half the overall costs, but it would half your chances of winning and of putting your sponsor on TV.

    2. david z says:

      Extraordinary. its the intra team racing that provides the majority of the drama and intrigue in F1, it would be quite dull without it!

  100. John Player says:

    I would blame Mark for the accident.He didnt close the door in time, allowing Vettel to attack inside.For some reason he still leaned towards his teammate.
    He chopped across similarly last year(Germany,Brazil)but got away with that. Next time he might end up like Gilles,flying through the catching fence.
    Moreover, Webber should understand that they have a bloody fast car this year. But he has also seen his RedBull to be quite fragile, it is also clear that their main competitor is McLaren. Can he afford losing points at this stage of the season?I dont think so.
    Is it really so hard to swallow defeat from your mate,for the sake of championship? Wouldn´t it be easier to take away as many points as possible, forget the McLarens soon and fight with your team mate when it safe. And necessary.

    Vettel wasn´t sensible either. He caught Webber very quikly, had almost 20 laps to try a passing manouvre. But for some reason he took that tiny gap.

    To sum up, Lewis has an oppurtunity to become a champion again.

    1. Flog says:

      He had a tiny gap, because Red Bull were trying to manage (i,e. stage) the whole thing by getting Webber to turn down his engine just long enough for Seb to get past.

      Shameful.

    2. alam says:

      I agree to an extent, due to the fact on Vettels onboard cam you can see he go 3/4 of a car length past him making him think th epass has stuck. Webber should have moved to let his rear right wheel go past.

      On the other hand Vettel could have gone into the corner making it into a “he who breaks 1st wins” senario. I say 50/50 fault.

  101. ColinZeal says:

    Christian Horner thinks Webber should have given more room after he “put Sebastian on the dirty side”.

    Webber should have been told that Vettel was quicker than him having saved some fuel. Martin Brundle certainly picked up on the fact in the three laps previous. (the pace not the fuel mode)

    From my point of view Sebastian failed to make another over-take stick and has some things to learn about racing if he wants to win championships. Australia 09 comes to mind – the sort of DNF that really costs at the end of the season

    Webber has been supremely impressive lately and I think Seb hasn’t taken to being beaten by his older team-mate too well.

    Hamiliton certainly seemed concerned about what orders had been given to his team-mate. He and Button were discussing it but Hamiliton realised the camera was on so stopped him revealing too much (that we could hear). He certainly seemed worried post race that Jenson was not in fuel-saving mode at the time of the pass as he was told and it turns out Jenson was given the order to fuel-save three laps later than Lewis. Communication mix-up as you say James but one that had Lewis shook up I think.

    The F1 rumour mill rolls on and it looks like two drivers thinking about what the pit wall were doing with their team-mates during this race. But Webber may well have reason to for concern.

    Christian Horner’s second interview with Lee McKenzie surprised me, he seems to think Mark should have let Seb glide by! Andrew Brenson mentioned that Seb was bound to save fuel not being in the lead.

    Funnily enough the media focussed entirely on the potential for tension at Mclaren and Ferrari but pegged Red Bull as nice and stable. Now the have something else to rattle on about!

    Interesting race all in all.

  102. Merc says:

    Watch the in car footage of Webber. He actually steers to the left when Vettel is passing him and as a reaction Vettel goes left and then suddenly loses control (damp track maybe).

    Vettel was being alomst pisued into the grass, which was wet.

    At first I thought it was Vettel’s fault, but study the footage and you will see Webber made one of this usual moves again which resulted in this.

    Unfortunately, English speaking fans always take the side of the English speaking driver and loath on the (especially) German drivers.

    1. Heffalump says:

      There is some truth in that and it goes for certain parts of the F1 media as well.

    2. ajag says:

      I share this is well. English F1 coverage and passion for the sport is largely brilliant but the way none english speaking drivers are critisised is quite interesting at times…

    3. alam says:

      Ive seen it, in the slow motion video you see when he is overtaking Webber is turning in not out sqeezing SV.

      As for the white line everyone keeps refering to, I’m not sure if it is 100 % straight.

      Overall, vettel got 3/4ths of a car ahead of Webber so Webber should have eased off instead of making it into a breaking competition.

    4. anthony says:

      Merc

      You are blind as well as biased.

      Watch the white line and Vettels tyre he moves directly away from it and into Webber.

      As for loathing German drivers, the only one who is criticised is Schumacher as he always believed he had the right to chop people off when they had the temerity to try and overtake him.

      It seems Vettel is going the same way?

  103. Ian Blackwell says:

    Excellent race. One must thank Red Bull for setting up a fascinating championship. But for their generosity on the unreliability and racing incident front, this season would probably be over by now. This race also showed McLaren to be the main opposition to them as it were. Were Ferrari really only the 5th quickest team out there? Its not like they were faster cars bottled up behind slower ones – even Alonso struggled to pass anyone for much of the race.

  104. Feb says:

    Vettel is a young, fast driver so he has no patience. He did not count his move well focusing on getting ahead into the corner, so he mistakenly assumed Mark would move aside when in fact Seb himself should have slided outside for that corner and tried his chance for the next one. After all, there was about 20 laps to go and he was already the fastest man on track.
    It was a mistake but as some have stated, it reminded me of a young Schumacher in ways that he made a move at the first chance, after losing races to his older teammate with the identical car.. And as a huge fan of him, to me it didn’t seem too bad for the sport because it’s already got very sterile after the competition between Senna-Prost, Schumacher-Irvine, etc.

    Also, with the Hamilton-Button issue, i don’t think Hamilton is OK with Button’s opportunistic move in turn 12, and i have support from Martin Brundle: “That’ll be another(refering to Vet-Web’s) tense debrief this afternoon, at McLaren. Lewis thinks they’ve both been told to save fuel and the next thing is Jenson breezes past him down the back straight!”
    And i think it was written all over Lewis’s face after the race.

  105. El Shish says:

    “A less generous one would call it ruthless.
    The result was he eased into the side of Webber”

    Seems an awfully generous interpretation of the incident. Replace ‘ruthless’ with ‘reckless’ and ‘eased’ with ‘veered’ and we’ve probably got a more accurate interpretation.

  106. eric weinraub says:

    After having watched Webber get away with his atrocious driving over the years I was glad to see someone not only play chicken with him, but simply refuse to lift. This is not a game of winks nor is Marquis of Queensbury in effect. This is a bloodsport and Webber of all people knows that. the real issues are the points lost and the effect on team morale. Frankly, RB is light years ahead of the field and this will have no real effect on the championship. I only wish every race had this much excitement.

    1. anthony says:

      Light years ahead?

      I would say that RBR have been caught by Mclaren!

  107. El Shish says:

    On a side note, seems like Webber will automatically become everybody’s second-favourite driver as a result of this incident and the subsequent behaviour of both Vettel and the team.Hard not to feel he’s getting the short end of the stick in that team.

    Thanks to articles like yours about him last week and the coverage he’s had on the BBC recently, I’ve really warmed to him and learned to appreciate his driving ability. From the way he accepted the blame for his crash with Hamilton in Australia, through to his general openness and admittance of blame when having underperformed, I think he’d be a deserving champion and is an excellent ambassador for the sport.

  108. ListenSheSpeaks says:

    Absolutely overjoyed that Hamilton won. I see the incident as an attempt by Vettel to show what he is made of. Everyone is too busy shouting ‘Mark! Mark! Mark! Mark! Mark!’. Yes this is not a case of -“After you sir.” Vettel did right by not giving in to the not budging Mark.

    The team playing rule only bring great advantage to the company not the drivers. It’s a race! Why should the guy who has won several times be given the advantage? It should not be forgotten that there exist other talented drivers too.

    If someone should be blamed for Red Bull losing first place it should be Webber.

    Hamilton’s annoyance is justified. Being overtaken by Button almost cost him his win.

  109. ListenSheSpeaks says:

    I agree with Brian. ( Comment no99)

  110. Dex says:

    I am Vettel’s fan, but i think they are both blame. Webber should not move to the right, but the problem is that he moved to the left. Seb should wait little bit longer to go right, because he had time.

    Christian Horner: “We now have all the facts. Mark had changed down into a fuel saving mode that cost him a little bit of performance on the straights, which also explains how Sebastian got a very clear run on him. The large mistake remains that not enough room was given, and the explanation is there on how Sebastian had managed to get into the tow. He had managed to save an extra kilogramme of fuel – as both cars start the race with the same amount of fuel. Effectively he had one more lap of the optimum engine mode, but we couldn’t back him off because he was under pressure from Lewis Hamilton behind. The frustrating thing is we have given away 28 points today and it should have been a 1-2. Both drivers have also lost points. From a team point of view it doesn’t matter which way around they are, but the priority is to finish 1-2 and that is exactly what we should have done today.”

  111. Steve Milward says:

    I’m finding it hard to believe anything I am reading that is coming out of Red Bull to try and defend what happened. At the end of the day both Vettel and Webber are racing drivers at the top of their game and want to win the race. Simple.

    In a move by Vettel which ended up in being the only incident of a fantastic Turkish Grand Prix he was simply out witted by the more experienced driver.

    There was no way that Webber was going to yield and give Vettel track position. Webber was leading the race and until Vettels overtaking move was complete there was just no way Webber would move and I don’t blame him.

    What did annoy me was the pit wall putting their arms around Vettel in a show of support, more of a PR exercise in my opinion.

    In the press conference during Jensons stint you could see Webber and Hamilton discussing the incident. Hamilton using his hands to explain how he saw the incident and Webber concuring.

    Webber ever the gentleman gave the typical company response that any PR would be proud of but at the end of the day I think that Red Bull is now a team divided and the only winner now is Mclaren.

    1. Freespeech says:

      Team orders are banned in F1 and IT IS NOT Webber’s role to make life easy for any other competitor, had Vettel held station Redbull would have got a 1 2 so why did/does Redbull think Webber’s at fault :?:

  112. JamesRossiF1 says:

    James, I can’t help but feel that this is going to divide the RBR garage. Do you think this’ll be the case and we’ll see a McLaren 88′-90′ scenario or do you think it’ll blow over?

  113. Steve McGill says:

    I hope it was a communication mix up at McLaren – they were clearly told to stay put and finish and yet Button arrogantly thought it fine to have to have a go. Hamilton got him back anyway and was very graciuos when he sat Behind button, saving team position in China. I wonder how Button would have felt had Hamilton done it to him there. Lack of respect for the team Jenson, Hamilton right to be extremley pissed off.

  114. Voyager says:

    Someone mentioned this above earlier – but weren’t the post-race celebrations rather muted? I didn’t see any of the podium finishers get out of their cars looking happy to have some champaign to spray about… Okay, I can imagine that Mark might be a bit miffed to ‘only’ be third. But Lewis? Jenson? Look guys, I’ll have a go if it is all too hard for you.

    Also, perhaps Vettel expected an ‘easy’ pass (no team orders of course…) and perhaps Webber did not feel inclined to give it? That might explain Vettel’s ‘nutter’ signal after the incident and Horner’s apparent support of his ‘favourite’ (not that he has one… much).

  115. Vytautas says:

    Vettel had his arguments when he made a slight turn to the right. He was aboout two-three foots in front, he was faster at that stage of the race and what is most important – alongside was not Hamilton or Button, but his TEAM MATE. As Horner said after the race – both team mates should give MORE SPACE for each other – that is what Vettel expected Webber to do. As Horner was saying “move, move” we can assume that he had in mind Webber moving to the right as Vettel had no where to go.

    I believe that this is what was going through Vettels mind at that moment when he made slight turn to the right. Yes, maybe it was a youthful impetuousness, but we can’t blame only Vettel for this accident. I see it as 50/50.

    1. Jonathan says:

      I’m guessing Vettel assumed that Webber would be a team player and move aside, and that’s why he deliberately moved right.

      The question is, doesn’t that make Vettel’s actions even more inexcusable?

      Because if that’s correct, Vettel didn’t make a stupid mistake – he made a calculated attempt to take advantage of his team mate’s maturity by deliberately creating a dangerous situation! That’s even worse!

      1. Vytautas says:

        First of all – thats smart, not “more inexcusable”. Secondly, more dangerous situation was staying on the dirty left for both of them while entering the braking point, IMHO.

      2. ajag says:

        That is also my theory… What would have happened if both had braked on the dirty side of the track?

      3. James Allen says:

        They were still some way from the braking zone when it happened

  116. Jon says:

    I can’t believe Redbull.

    80% of this poll says Vettel to blame. DC, Brundle, Hamilton, Rosberg, Wurz, Davison and probably many others say Vettel is to blame but Horner and co are blaming Webber for not giving enough room.

    There is an article of Andrew Benson blog about it on BBC website. Webber is the ultimate team guy, always talking about the team but the team doesn’t have his back, the team has Vettel’s back.

    These F1 guys are very thick skinned, because I would feel alone if I hit my teammate and had no support. It doesn’t matter what DC, or Hamilton says, these are the guys that make Webber’s car. What a joke this whole situation has become.

    There’s always been a hint of Vettel favouritism, but now it’s wide open and for all to see.

  117. carl craven says:

    As I see it, at the press conference Jenson is confirming that he’d been told to conserve fuel, much earlier than Lewis. Lap 30.

    Jenson also conserved his tyres and seemed to be handling the car better in the ever so slightly moist conditions.

    As for Jenson being annoyed if Lewis had done it to him, didn’t Lewis push Jenson to the line in both of Jenson’s victories? I don’t recall Lewis looking like he had settled for second in either of those races.

    1. MartinWR says:

      I concur. Few of LH’s fans seemed to have noticed what Jense said, or perhaps choose to not to.

      I think it’s pretty clear why LH was depressed after the race. Suddenly he’s realised that, given an fair crack of the whip, Jense can take him on, now that he’s getting the car sorted to suit his driving style. When you’ve been bulled up for years by the media to believe in your own supreme invincibility, the realisation that a new team-mate has the measure of you must be rather sobering.

      1. James Allen says:

        He had the fuel turned down…

      2. Matt says:

        Exactly, after Button passed how long did it take Hamilton to repass after he realised they were not in fuel save mode but actually racing? all of 5 or so corners……

        Button got a first hand taste of what racing Hamilton is like, and if anything Hamilton has shown him who’s boss. Still, Buttons’s performance definitely changed my opinion on him somewhat, it’s just that he’s not quite on the same level as his team mate…

        Great race, great result for Britain. If we see the same result as Silverstone i will be running down the road in my England shirt screaming!

      3. MartinWR says:

        The facts speak for themselves. Jense was told by the team to play second fiddle to LH, sorry we have to say “save fuel”, for almost all the race. When they were put on an equal footing Jense was able to pass, having managed his tyres, as he is able to do. Clearly when LH understeered into him and banged wheels it was decided to let LH have it to prevent another catastrophe.

        It’s pretty obvious that, short of eliminating all forms of communication, the teams will continue to defy the FIA and stage manage, indeed simply invent the outcome of F1 races and championships. Remember Ronnie Paterson and Mario Andretti?

  118. Freespeech says:

    Webber MUST do his own thing this year, if he yields he’ll never be champion, this is the best chance he will ever get.
    It’s clear regardless as to the bull the team are saying, Vettel is their favoured son.

  119. Liam says:

    Its very weird to see 2 completely different sides of the story: 1 side with Helmut Marko, Christian Horner and the other side everyone else. Grassy knoll.

    James, please tell me you don’t write the F1.com interviews also, because that interview with Helmut was like a press release with leading questions.

    1. N. Machiavelli says:

      “Its very weird to see 2 completely different sides of the story: 1 side with Helmut Marko, Christian Horner and the other side everyone else.”

      I can alleviate your confusion :

      Horner and Marko, who work for Red Bull, are saying what they have been told ( paid ) to say, and the other side is speaking the truth.

      What is truly sad is that the man with the money
      ( Mateschitz ) is giving these orders. I’ve lost respect for
      Red Bull as a team as a result of the current team position
      as explained by Marko and Horner. If they had explained to
      Webber that he would be not have equal status I very much
      doubt that Webber would have driven for them. But now
      it’s obvious that is exactly what Red Bull wants.

      I hope Mark Webber wins the WDC and then leaves Red
      Bull with nothing but a smile and a wave.

  120. marz says:

    Anyone who isnt biased (like me I dont care about both RBR drivers, I am for Button), will confess Webber squeezed Vettel to the dirty side, almost onto the grass) then made a very small move to the left, made Vettel move a bit more to left then lose control because of the dirty side/dampness/white line/grass/whatever.

    If Webber was smart, he would have just went to the right, the racing line, the breaking point was there and it would have been a 1-2 for RBR

    Horner now seems to have officially stated this too, Lee Mckenzie BBC Twitter shows this.

    1. N. Machiavelli says:

      “If Webber was smart, he would have just went to the right, ”

      No, if Vettel was smart he would have remained in second place and allowed the pole-sitter to get a win he deserved;
      this would also have given the team valuable points toward the constructor’s championship, and Vettel would have
      gained some points himself, instead of zero points as is
      now the case.

      All you people who believe the leader is supposed to
      allow himself to be passed don’t understand racing !

      1. Vytautas says:

        Simply because Webber won a pole doesnt mean that he deserved a win and Vettel should forget about it. Plus he had a constant danger behind himself and Webber was detering him, so it was perfectly reasonable to try to overtake Webber. Even more as they are also competing for WDC.

    2. Z says:

      Thank you. I thought this was clear-cut, but it seems everyone blames Vettel! Unbelievable…

      And to those who keep saying “Do you expect a race leader to just let someone pass you” is clearly an armchair fan with no race experience. Poor. There’s hard racing, then there’s just silly racing. A squeeze like that would have been acceptable on the last lap, but not then.

  121. Tony Morel says:

    When Vettel got past Webber at the start of the Malaysian GP we saw a new Mark who mentally appeared to toughen up.
    With the RB management now blatently supporting Seb, will Mark take it up another gear again or will he figure “what’s the point”
    I hope he comes out fighting against his biggest rivals – Vettel and Horner

    1. N. Machiavelli says:

      “I hope he comes out fighting against his biggest rivals – Vettel and Horner”

      Agreed !

      Until today I did not have a favorite for the championship.

      Now I do, and it is Mark Webber. But it’s the driver, not the
      Red Bull team, which is my favorite.

      I think highly of Webber for his conduct both on and off the track. He is a man’s man and a gentleman, neither of which cannot be said of Vettel, who made a childish gesture which impugned the sanity of Webber after the incident which Vettel himself caused today. Vettel behaves like a spoiled child, and his behavior disgusts me.

      As for the Red Bull consultant, Dr. Marko, he is paid to
      say what Mateschitz wants him to say. So much for Marko’s
      objectivity.

      Red Bull seems determined to make Vettel their WDC.

      BUt now, a serious question : Is Red Bull’s goal when they sponsor sports, to favor spoiled brats at the expense of gentleman sportsmen ? If so, may Red Bull and its team rot, and may Webber move on to a better team which will treat him as he deserves.

      1. Rich C says:

        “Is Red Bull’s goal when they sponsor sports, to favor spoiled brats at the expense of gentleman sportsmen..”

        Why, yes. Didn’t you know?

        Thats their target demo. A “gentleman” would never drink Red Bull, whereas wild-ass teenage a-holes do all the time.

        Plz pay better attention!

  122. Steven Selasky says:

    Sensational. Weber needs to go all out for the title. When an opportunity comes take it…..

    Let see if Christian Horner and Helmut Marko make this work.

    The tone – reminds me of the duels of Piquet and Mansell.

    To bad I am not going to Montreal.

  123. Stephen says:

    To me it seems like Vettel was determined to beat Webber this weekend. He really wanted to make a point and it culminated in today’s incident.

    Watching the post qualifying press conference (http://news.bbc.co.uk/sport1/hi/motorsport/formula_one/8712831.stm) there appeared to be a visible tension between the two drivers. Looking at Vettel’s body language when Webber is talking about the order in which they leave the pits. Vettel mutters to himself and shakes his head and rolls his eyes while Webber is talking, he seems very dismissive of what Webber has said.

    Red Bull have a lot of work to do to keep this rivalry under control.

  124. Steve says:

    Best thing is that Vettle lost points and Webber leads the championship. Just deserts. I guess Vettle will never try it again.

    When he was spinning his finger over his head after he took himself out he was the one who looked crazy.

    The world now knows he’s completely rattled by Webber and will do anything illegal or unsporting, like the other German Schumacher before him, to win.

    Post race Webber was gracious about the accident while Vettle tried to blame Webber and came off like the pratt I’ve always suspected he was.

  125. Tim Easton says:

    Two week ago it seemed nailed on certainty that Webber would be staying with Red Bull but now I’m not so sure. I can’t see how they can work together from now on. In a pole on another website I said it was equal fault but now thinking about it I can’t see why Vettal needed to turn right into Webber on a left hand corner!!!!

  126. James H says:

    Superb writing James – good show mate.

  127. John says:

    Great race and I was not expecting a collision between Webber and Vettel this will play in to the hands of McLaren, Hamilton drove mature race apart from banging wheels with Button which did not end in tears.

    This is gonna make the race in Canada fascinating to watch and I tip Lewis Hamilton to be mighty around montreal the momentum is definately with Mclaren.

    Expect more fireworks from Red Bull.

  128. Z says:

    Wow, James. I thought your readers were knowledgable :P I can’t believe almost everyone blames Vettel. Unreal! Maybe I need to see a replay or something as I missed something everyone else is seeing? But he obviously had no place to go (no space left for him) and he lost it on a bump or something.

    Why whould he veer to the right at that speed when he knows Webber is right there? It’s just common sense. Being that far on the inside compromises both the drivers’ line into the hairpin anyway, with the McLarens in close company.

    Clearly Webber’s fault, although he wouldn’t have expected Vettel’s car to become unstable there. I’m not sure what these other people expect, for Vettel to completely lift off or something when he’s almost already in FRONT of Webber? Wow. Unless he didn’t lose control of the car over the crest, then it’s all Webber.

    1. N. Machiavelli says:

      Vettel tried to pass and Vettel SCREWED UP THE PASS.

      The idea that this is somehow Webber’s fault is utter
      fantasy.

    2. anthony says:

      WATCH the replay!!!!

      Vettel turned into Webber!

  129. Kirsty says:

    hahahaha! for the last few seasons, I’ve heard so much crap about how Red Bull is different from McLaren and Ferrari, they don’t play favourites, they’re fair and they know how to manage their drivers. Ok, it’s official, every F1 driver is a pratt.

  130. Noel says:

    I think it’s pretty clear what happened. Vettel leaped at an opportunity and Webber made him earn it by keeping him out on the marbles. Had Webber yielded it would’ve set the tone for the coming races and Vettel would have the upper hand and probably the championship. What will be interesting is the next time one lines up the other for a pass; the first to blink, loses.

    PS If you think that there’s tension in the RBR garage now, wait until Australia downs Germany in the first round of the World Cup next month….. ;-)

  131. James says:

    I’m surprised JA you haven’t commented on the disposition of Hamilton and Button after their one two finish. To me it was the most subdued celebration of a perfect team finish I have seen in a very long time.

    The veiled comments from Hamilton’s interviews thus far revealed to me anyway, why he was looking so upset that Button had even challenged him. A question then: if both drivers were told to save fuel and reduce lap times to a particular target, how then was it possible for Button to close on Hamilton? Was it due to Button not heading the teams request and capitalize on the situation? Was it internal and the team told Button to take the shot now the Hamilton had slowed?

    You could see Hamilton was not happy that Button had made the choice he did and with the touch in corner one, Hamilton could have easily received front wing damage. Now that would have been a spectacle, Red Bull and McLaren take out their team mates just for the spoils of victory to lose sight on the constructor’s championship.

    I suspect there will be some internal investigations by Hamilton to see why Button had not slowed as the team had requested, telemetry with tell all, unfortunately we’ll never find out the truth. But for sure, Hamilton has to consider if he can trust Button in the future.

  132. Alexx says:

    if Vettle is to blame, why havent the stewards handed out any punishments for an avoidable accident against him?.

    I believe it was a 50/50 racing incident and that is why Vettle fot off without penalty.

  133. F-ingDuct!:) says:

    HEY EVERYONE, McLaren operate their RW80 ‘F-Duct’ with the drivers left hand! Watch Hamilton onboard footage on the BBC or Youtube …lap 33 and 34

    A great season full of great drivers and fantastic action!..soft spot for Massa, want him to do well.

  134. Peter says:

    Bitter rivalries are what makes F1 fantastic viewing!

    In fact thats what makes sport great!

    webber needs to forget playing team player – he may not have this opportunity again to go for a world championship.

    i dont think it will be hard for him to find a drive with another team for next year – as quite clearly he is fast and committed driver

  135. Bruce says:

    Vettel is a bloody idiot. He should apologise.

  136. JohnBt says:

    A huge civil war at Red Bull is a great way to describe the situation. Watching the podium ceremony, it was impossible to miss the body language between Hamilton and Button. I sense a civil war is brewing in the McLaren fortress too.

    Did you realise the pictures of Bernie and Vettel, it’s like a father and son relationship. Both blondes too. LOL.

    Vettel is a very likable guy, always smiling and jovial, with his boyish image. It’s beginning to change. Soon he will no longer be a boy but a full fletched man who will demand his dominance.

    Mind you, he’s a very good driver, certainly one of the best.

    As for Webber, if you observed in post qualifying, he looked pensive most times, as though something will happen to him. I wouldn’t blame Mark as he’s had too much so called bad luck in his career and to be at this level now, you want to cling on to the rope as tight as you can before it turns oily and slippery. Webber is a good guy.

  137. Jon Wilde says:

    A bit off topic…

    Excellent track, Excellent Race!!

    My mate and I celebrated the Mclaren 1-2 by running up and down the start finish straight in orange Morphsuits and Mclaren caps. Stupidly we didn’t take any pictures, if you happen to be one of the 100′s of people who stopped us to have a photo with us, please get in touch with me!! Thanks

  138. AdrianP says:

    First, what a cracking race! Best dry race of the season and, for that matter for a long time. Only marred for me by the fact that every time Legard opened his mouth, it was to spew out a stream of banalities or inaccuracies.

    (1) Webber v Vettel: seems pretty clear to me. The main point is obvious from the onboards. Webber holds his line; Vettel jerks the steering towards Webber expecting him to yield. You can just about see that Vettel has tried a bit earlier to creep back to the right, seen that Webber not moving, so he decides to force the issue by going for the chop. It’s possible that Vettel ‘lost’ the car as he claimed afterwards, but I doubt it – it didn’t look like it from the video, they weren’t in the braking zone, and that is not consistent with his immediate gesture accusing Webber of being a nutter. The subsidiary point is that it certainly can be said that Webber gave absolutely no margin for error on either of their parts – he could not have given Vettel any less room – if the Vettel was going to make the move stick, it was going to have to be a hombre moment and Webber was going to make sure that Vettel was put to the test of making the corner from a very tight line, braking on the dirty side of the track. So when Horner says, the real mistake was that no room was given, he has got some grounds, but that ignores that it was Vettel who caused an avoidable accident by driving into Webber. The engine-setting intrigue adds a further dimension to the whole drama – hopefully we’ll get more on that.

    (2) Red Bull v Maclaren (and the rest). While it is said that Maclaren have closed the gap significantly, my take is that what we saw in Turkey is a more clear example of what has been seen all season, namely: Red Bulls have access to extraordinary pace in qualifying, but are ‘only’ very quick in race pace. I am more and more convinced that they have some sort of trick one-lap system and I wonder whether that is what Webber was mysteriously referring to when he said that ‘you guys will have to do more digging somewhere else’. I have wondered whether there might be some way of using exhaust heat to work the tyres harder for a particular period – e.g. some sort of ducting in the exhaust such that heat is directed to the rear tyres at the very top of the rev band.

    (3) Button v Hamilton: for me, the most fascinating aspect. I think we’re yet to get fully to the bottom of what happened. Clearly, Lewis was very peeved about something – he looked like he’d swallowed a lemon rather than won a race. This is the first race all season where my impression is that Button had equal or better raw pace than Hamilton (this is, of course, very subjective in that it was difficult to get a true idea of Hamilton’s ultimate race pace) and would probably have outqualified Hamilton if he had not had the yellow flag. If forced to guess, I would suspect that Button has sorted out something with his brakes/front end which is more to his liking, perhaps running longer but softer springs at the front (hence the bottoming out in turn 8). By the time that Webber/Vettel had come together, it is reasonable to suspect both that Button had managed to save a bit more fuel and a bit more life in his tyres (NB in particular (i) that Button’s lap time was coming from Sectors 1 and 3 – he was slower through the turn 8 complex => easier on tyres through the most tyre demanding section; (ii) the surprising radio call to Hamilton on just after he had got his hard tyres to the effect ‘We can do it on these tyres’ as if it was always known that Hamilton was going to be marginal on tyres).

    The likely interpretation of the ensuing events seems to me
    (i) Hamilton then Button were told to conserve fuel (and told that the other was also conserving fuel). Hamilton took this as an indication that they were no longer racing and backed right off. Button took this as an opportunity, perhaps suspecting that Hamilton was more marginal than him on fuel.
    (ii) Hamilton was therefore taken by surprise when Button swept past. I’d lay money on the fact that Hamilton’s *turned the wick back up* to get back past on the straight and back into turn 1.
    (iii) Button was then told that ‘fuel was critical’ – this almost certainly was intended to tell him to stop racing rather than that there was any marginality about him getting to the end (I think) – and that’s why Button dodged the question of how marginal his fuel was at the end. Button conspicuously obeyed by dropping right off Hamilton’s tail.
    (iv) Hamilton was peeved because (a) he thought that Button should have interpreted the first ‘fuel conserve’ message as a ‘not racing’ message; and (b) he probably knew that after he had got the position back, Button had effectively been forced to stop racing. So although he’d won, he’d not beaten anyone fair and square on the track and that’s the sort of thing that, credit to Hamilton, bothers him.
    (v) Credit to both of them that they managed to smooth things over between them and managed to steer clear of any suggestion that the team was managing the finishing order, which required some nifty footwork.
    (vi) Psychological winner – clearly Button, I’d say.
    (vii) Situations like this are going to happen again. Button’s car is normally in better shape at the end of the race and he’ll start getting peeved if he can’t use that advantage against his teammate. Also he’s come to Maclaren to have a crack at Hamilton and he’s not going to take kindly to playing follow my leader at the end of races. But on the other hand, in this sort of situation there’s a lot of sense from the team point of view in not racing each other right to the bitter end.

  139. Why does Helmut Marko have the control of that team instead of Christian Horner. Horner is like a puppet.

    Helmut Marko reminds me of the character in lord of the rings, Grima Wormtongue, whispering into the kings (Dietrich Mateschitz) ear.

  140. Justin says:

    I’ve been thinking how similar the situations between the doomed Vettel/Webber overtake and the later Button/Hamilton overtake were. Both situations came about due to some shall we say confusion around who should be driving at what speed due to the fuel levels.
    But the other similarity that struck me, is it possible that Jenson is in fact McLaren’s man?
    Lewis was brought in by Ron Dennis. Ron was not adverse to stamping round the paddock upsetting people as we know, and I think he was happy to use his weight to protect Lewis every time he became petulant, said stupid things to the media (“the monkey’s at the back being one that springs to mind) or threw races due to mistakes caused by him driving emotionally. However there is a new boss at McLaren and a new feeling around the paddock. And this is where Jenson might suddenly have the upper hand, he is always cool, calm and collected. Very aware of his corporate responsibilities and therefore careful what he says, plus he’s shown to the doubters that he can drive a car. So I wonder how much extra respect this has given him from Martin Witmarsh? I think Dennis and Hamilton are pure racers, everything they do is to achieve the single determination to win. Whereas Witmarsh and Button are a more complete package, yes they want to win, but they are also capable of thinking of the bigger picture at the same time

  141. Tony D says:

    Why was there no steward’s investigation into the incident after the race? There usually is after an incident like this (eg. Australia 2009), or does one of the affected parties have to lodge a complaint? If so, why didn’t big-mouth Marko lodge a complaint, if he believed Webbo was in the wrong?

  142. freecitizen says:

    Oh Mr. James Allen, your comments are unbelievable. One undeniable fact should have squarely pointed who was wrong; whose wheels were behind at the instant of contact? The golden rule of racing though, not codified is that when a challenger gets ahead, the beaten racer must give way. If Mr. Horner had intended for MW to move aside, he was not out of line. However, if both challenger and the challenged are head to head then, both racers share equal blame. Obviously, if the racer that has lost ground refused to give way, a collision would result. That was what happened at the Turkish GP. Simply said, the racer who forced the collision did not show good sportsmanship. Instead of fighting back for the lead later on, the racer chose not to yield when he should. The body language after the race and at the post race conference says it all. Even the boos during the trophy ceremony shows how disappointed the fans were of the poor sportsmanship.

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