• Belgian Grand Prix

Whitmarsh slams Vettel after Button crash

ESPNF1 Staff
August 30, 2010 « Ferrari not writing off title | »

Martin Whitmarsh was highly critical of Sebastian Vettel after Sunday's Belgian Grand Prix.

Vettel lost control of his Red Bull at Spa Francorchamps and took out McLaren's Jenson Button while attempting an overtaking move. After the race McLaren team boss Whitmarsh admitted he thought the German "got off lightly" with a drive-through penalty.

"Sebastian is an exceptional and very fast driver," he is quoted by German media. "But he makes a habit of colliding with other drivers. Jenson was in a strong position and it hasn't only damaged his world championship chances but it's also bad for our team. A mistake like that is something you usually only see in junior formulas, not in Formula One. He is a likeable guy and we know we didn't do it on purpose.

"He's developing. But when you're fighting for the title, this sort of thing is not easy. It affects not only him but also those around him. I'm sure he'll learn a lot from this but it hasn't happened only today."

Red Bull's Christian Horner admitted Spa was "not a great weekend" for the team's young driver but said Button also contributed to the incident.

"I think Jenson took him by surprise with how early he braked for the bus-stop and [Vettel] tried to avoid him," he said.