• British Grand Prix

Vettel disappointed to miss out on battle with Webber

ESPNF1 Staff
July 11, 2010 « Webber remains angry with Red Bull decision | »
A puncture put an end to Sebastian Vettel's chances of victory © Press Association

Sebastian Vettel said it was a "shame" he couldn't fight his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber at the British Grand Prix, after he suffered a puncture coming out of the first corner.

Vettel started from pole but was beaten into the first corner by Webber and then contact with Lewis Hamilton punctured his right-rear tyre. Friction between the two Red Bull drivers erupted yesterday when Vettel was given a front-wing update over Webber, but Vettel's puncture meant the pair were not able to fight it out during Sunday's race.

"From my point of view he [Webber] had a better start, so obviously I moved to the right trying to defend but he was already there - I knew that because I could see him in the mirror, I knew he didn't stall," he said. "Then he was there so there was no point in doing something stupid. The race is longer than just one corner. It's a shame I couldn't fight him then, but it's good for the team. I'm happy for the team."

Vettel put his start down to a sticking clutch and too much wheelspin.

"I think we were a little bit out of the window with the clutch," he added. "I had a bad start, lots of wheelspin, so I lost the immediate pull-away. I think we tried probably a bit too hard, but that's life - you try hard to get the optimum."

"Into turn one obviously I had to let Mark past and then I don't know if - I didn't feel anything - people said that Lewis touched me. As I said, I didn't feel anything," Vettel added. "Probably he achieved this time what he [Hamilton] didn't achieve in Valencia. Surely it wasn't his intention to give me a puncture, if it was like that [contact with Hamilton], but with a puncture early on in the race it's a big minus. I had to come back slowly to the pits. Then I was on the same set of tyres for the rest of the race. Fortunately the safety car came out so I had a bit of entertaining the last couple of laps."

Vettel went on to recover to seventh place while Webber took victory. When asked about Webber's comments after the race that his performance was "not bad for a No. 2 driver", Vettel made clear that the relationship between the two drivers had deteriorated.

"Well, I obviously focus on myself and sort of see, I guess - especially after what happened in the past," he said. "People have different opinions, I have my opinion, I have made my experiences, sometimes good and bad, and you get to know people probably a bit better and see their true faces. I think I learned my lesson, and I focus on myself."