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Vettel admits: I got the call and ignored it

Sebastian Vettel: I got the call and I ignored it.... I put myself above a team decision
In another twist to the controversy in Malaysia, Sebastian Vettel has now conceded that he did get the call from the team to stay behind team-mate Mark Webber, but that he opted to ignore it.

Vettel apologised to Webber after the race, but in an interview with Sky Sports F1 alluded to the fact that he wasn't aware that they had been instructed to hold station following the fourth and final round of stops.

"I messed up today, I apologise for that but right now I want to say the truth. I wasn't aware of it [the team orders] otherwise I wouldn't take that much risk to pass someone I'm not supposed to pass at that moment,” he said.

“But obviously just before we got out on the podium, I had a very quick word and it was quite a shock [to find out about the team orders]. It's not easy for me to admit but that's the truth so I want to stick to the truth.”

However, in the official post-event release issued by Red Bull Racing, the three-time F1 world champion had a change of heart and has now held his hands up and admitted he did know he wasn't meant to pass the sister car.

“I got the call and I ignored it. Mark and I are used to fighting each other when we're close, but with the tyres how they are now, and not knowing how long they will last, it was an extremely big risk to ignore the call to stay second. We could have ended up finishing eighth or ninth after destroying the tyres in those two laps; I put myself above a team decision, which was wrong. I didn't mean to and I apologise,” he said.

“I'm not happy I've won, I made a mistake and if I could undo it I would. It's not easy right now and I owe apologies to Mark and the team.”

“I would love to come up with a nice excuse as to why I did it, but I can't,” he added. “I can understand Mark's frustration and the team not being happy with what I did today.

"I owe an explanation to him and the whole team. I will try to explain to them later. We talk about this situation happening many times and what we will do if and when it happens and normally it doesn't, but today it did and I should have translated the call into action.”

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
23.03.2013 - Free practice 3, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9
23.03.2013- Qualifying, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9
24.03.2013- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9
24.03.2013- Race, the podium; winner Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9, 2nd Mark Webber (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB9, 3rd Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W04
24.03.2013- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9
24.03.2013- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9

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bob - Unregistered

March 24, 2013 2:40 PM

This situation is a bit of a double edged sword. I think team orders in this situation is a JOKE! What the hell kind of idea is it to hold station after the last pit stop? As far as I'm concerned, the fastest driver should win. However, with that being said, if there is an agreement and understanding in the team about certain orders, whether we agree with them or not, then they should be honoured and obeyed by all drivers. In this instance there was an agreement that was understood by both drivers but unfortunately for Mark, he was the only one who honoured the agreement. So while I agree with Vettel wanting to race for the victory, in this case he showed his true nature - a spoiled, selfish, up himself, impulsive, dirty, back stabbing little grub!

pukka - Unregistered

March 24, 2013 2:46 PM

Stressing he wants to tell the truth then outright lies then backtracking later to admit he lied really takes a lot of credibility away. He should have just said, I'm a driver and I want to win titles and as team leader I had the right to make that decision. People could get behind that, not someone who makes excuses and outright lies. Not surprised by the decision nor the stupidity. Another reason many F1 fans don't care for him.

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