Off the back of his distant fourth-place finish in last weekend's German Grand Prix at the Nürburgring, runaway F1 2011 World Championship leader Sebastian Vettel has warned Red Bull Racing that 'the others have caught up' – urging his employer to swiftly get on top of its 'hiccoughs'.
Having triumphed in six of the opening nine races of the campaign arriving on home turf, Vettel had been eager to give his adoring fans something to cheer about with a seventh success at the Nürburgring, but as it transpired, he was never on the outright pace and could take the chequered flag only fourth, more than three-quarters-of-a-minute adrift of race-winner Lewis Hamilton.
The first time all season that the defending F1 World Champion has failed to ascend the rostrum, the result saw his advantage in the title standings cut from 80 points over Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber to 77, and more significantly, from 95 points over Hamilton to 82. He has called upon his team to rapidly resolve the 'issues' he suffered in Germany in time for this weekend's Hungarian Grand Prix at the Hungaroring.
“The weekend was a bit strange,” Vettel is quoted as having said by The Sun
. “I never felt 100 per cent well in the car. There were moments when I thought everything would be back to normal, but in the end it wasn't and issues surfaced.
“Now we have to sit down and analyse the reasons for all these hiccoughs, because one thing became very clear – the others have caught up – so we also have to keep up our development.”