• Malaysian Grand Prix

Karthikeyan hits back at Vettel

ESPNF1 Staff
March 28, 2012 « Domenicali gives beleaguered Massa vote of confidence | Webber 'reasonably satisfied' with start »
Narain Karthikeyan also had contact with Jenson Button during the race © Sutton Images

Narain Karthikeyan has hit back at Sebastian Vettel for branding him an "idiot" after their clash during the Malaysian Grand Prix.

Vettel was lapping Karthikeyan late in the lap when he appeared to return to the racing line too early and clipped the HRT's front wing. The incident left Vettel with a puncture and dropped him out of the points, with his immediate reaction being to call Karthikeyan an "idiot". Karthikeyan, however, believes Vettel is just taking out his frustrations having lost his dominance in the championship.

"I think he's highly frustrated because he's having a tough season," Karthikeyan told the Deccan Chronicle. "It's completely unprofessional to blame me for the incident. The derogatory remark only goes to show him in bad light. Just because he has a good car, he can't call others an idiot. I have won races in all the previous single-seater championships I have participated in so I don't need a certificate from Vettel."

Karthikeyan has also received support from other drivers on the grid, with the Force India pair of Nico Hulkenberg and Paul di Resta disagreeing with Vettel.

"From what I saw, it was not Narain's fault," Hulkenberg said. "So I don't really understand why he (Vettel) said all that."

Di Resta added: "Narain is entitled to do as much on the track in comparison with someone like Vettel. Both are F1 drivers and are there to represent their teams."