Not surprisingly Sebastian Vettel has stoked the simmering embers of Australian sporting passion, by saying Mark Webber had never supported him and did not deserve to win the Malaysian Grand Prix. Vettel had been instructed by the Red Bull team to not pass Webber but he defied the team and took the line honours. After the race he apologised to a fuming Webber, but it now appears that this may well have been a manufactured apology.
The three-time world champion effectively retracted the apology he issued to Webber and implied that Webber had been guilty of the same crime on a number of occasions.”After all that has happened the past few years, Mark didn’t deserve to win,” Vettel said.
Many experts believe that this was Vettel trying to say that his actions were payback for Webber attacking him in the British Grand Prix two years ago, on that occasion Webber was ordered not to by his team.
In truth this is where F1 as a sporting event can be called into question. We have known for years that the races are many faceted. You have the manufacturers fighting for supremacy, as well as the drivers themselves. Rarely has the question as to which is more important been brought to the fore.
Vettel is a member of the Red Bull team, and judging by the instructions given to him they see the manufacturers title as being paramount, and should one of their drivers take out the championship then that is a bonus. Vettel it would appear sees it very differently. To him the drivers championship is the most important title. Which is not surprising, after all he is a very skilled driver, and the whole aim in the sport is to prove you are the best.
For a number of years drivers have won Grand Prix events around the world because their team mate has eased up and allowed the ‘number one driver’ to win. There have also been occasions where the two work together and prevent a challenger passing so that their team mate can take the chequered flag.
Surely F1 should always be about the driver and the manufacturers championship secondary? If you agree, then maybe you can understand why Vettel passed Webber, because he wants to win, and he wants to be regarded as the best in the world.