Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Hockenheim, 2012

Vettel and Hamilton at odds over unlapping

F1 Fanatic round-up

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Lewis Hamilton, McLaren, Hockenheim, 2012In the round-up: Lewis Hamilton defends his driving after being criticised by Sebastian Vettel and Christian Horner for unlapping himself during the German Grand Prix.


Top F1 links from the past 24 hours:

Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso cruises to German Grand Prix victory (The Guardian)

Sebastian Vettel: “It’s a bit stupid to disturb the leaders. I think that potentially lost us the position to Jenson [Button].”

Cry baby: Hamilton slams Vettel as German Grand Prix fallout turns into public spat (The Mirror)

Lewis Hamilton: “It doesn?t really bother me what he says, I guess. It shows his maturity. I don?t think I?ve made any silly decisions throughout the race. I had nothing to gain apart from staying out of the way of my team mate.”

Vettel and Horner slam Hamilton (Sky)

Christian Horner: “Why was he interfering with the race leaders? He should have respected the fact that they were ahead on the track.”

F1 Fanatic via Twitter

“Vettel doing himself no favours calling Hamilton’s unlapping ‘stupid’. Remember the Kubica/Vettel/Hamilton move at Interlagos ’08.”

Intelligent Alonso shows he has all the answers (BBC)

“After standing on his Ferrari’s nose to milk the applause, Alonso turned to Button and said: ‘You couldn’t beat me?’ He then pointed to Vettel and said: ‘He couldn’t either.'”

2012 German Grand Prix (McLaren)

Hamilton: “My second-lap puncture was incredibly unfortunate: there was debris scattered across the full width of the track and I didn?t have any option other than to drive straight through it. What?s more frustrating is that, at the time, I was the eighth car through ?ǣ so to be the one to get the puncture is just cruel luck.”

Ferrari Still Not The Fastest Car, Says Domenicali (Speed)

“I believe we still don?t have the fastest car, if we had the fastest car maybe it would be easier to win. We need to improve the car, and we need to make sure our car is good in all the different conditions, wet/dry, different kinds of tyres, and so on.”

McLaren MP4-27 – revised sidepod design (F1)

“The extensive list of updates include lower and more sculptured sidepods, new exhausts, new radiator installation, a revised floor in front of the rear tyres, a new diffuser, new rear wing endplates and modified brakes ducts.”

Ferrari told to ignore RBR technical row (Autosport)

Stefano Domenicali: “When I first saw the note from the technical delegate, I said ‘stay focused on our job today.’ This is something that engineers see and they try to think about. But no, stay focused on what you have to do. Forget about what is happening.”

Ecclestone’s absence fuels talk of charges (The Telegraph)

“After his office intimated that he would fly in late on Saturday, Ecclestone apparently had a change of heart, saying that he did not want to be ‘a distraction’. German media had speculated on Friday that Ecclestone might be arrested if he attended the race.”

German GP – Conference 4 (FIA)

Button on his flat spot during the final stint: “It gave me a little bit of a headache, but that was about it. It was unusual. I guess they just weren’t up to temperature when I hit the brakes that time. We’ve been very good with front-locking in this race. Normally it’s a big issue with the McLaren. In testing we had big issues with front locking. We did some set-up work and we’ve solved a lot of that, which is great for us.”

Comment of the day

There’s been a lot of discussion recently over Ferrari using Italian in their team radio messages. Bullfrog reckons it’s up to TV broadcasters to translate them instead of forcing Ferrari to use English:

Sky are asking people to pay a premium for their service ?ǣ the least they can do is find someone to translate the messages, instead of making lame jokes and sounding amazed that people speak in funny foreign languages…

From the forum

Happy birthday!

Happy birthday to Matt!

If you want a birthday shout-out tell us when yours is by emailling me, using Twitter or adding to the list here.

On this day in F1

Five years ago today a furious Scott Speed claimed his Toro Rosso team were trying to force him and Vitantonio Liuzzi out.

Sure enough, it soon turned out Speed had already started his last race: he was replaced by Sebastian Vettel at the Hungarian Grand Prix. Liuzzi was dropped at the end of the season to make way for Sebastien Bourdais.

Image ?? McLaren/Hoch Zwei

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  • 197 comments on “Vettel and Hamilton at odds over unlapping”

    1. I was also angry at Alonso’s engineer. As the only english speaker in my family, it’s up to me to translate the team radio messages, and now I have to try and remember my silly basic italian lessons in school!

      As for the Hamilton controversy, I think it’s highly unethical. I feel sorry for Vettel about that. But I still do agree with the stewards for his penalty. He didn’t even try to stay on the kerb.

      1. @carlitox

        As for the Hamilton controversy, I think it’s highly unethical. I feel sorry for Vettel about that.

        Few things are black-and-white in this sport (or in life generally for that matter). But there is absolutely no just cause to complain about Hamilton’s conduct here.

        Had he unlapped himself and then proceeded to hold up Vettel so Button could try to pass him, this would be a differnet matter. But he didn’t. He unlapped himself and then went after Alonso. Hamilton was driving his own race.

        Drivers are perfectly entitled to unlap themselves if they are going quickly enough. For Vettel and Horner to suggest Hamilton was behaving improperly or doing anything wrong in this respect is sheer arrogance.

        Moreover, I suspect their complaints were not entirely sincere, and were at least partly motivated by a desire to deflect questions over Vettel’s move on Button at the end of the race.

        1. I don’t doubt that, they saw it coming and wanted to direct attention somewhere else. But I couldn’t help but suspect that he was after Alonso just to hold him back, which he was unable anyway. I may be kind of a conspiracist, I admit it, and I’m no RBR nor McLaren nor Alonso fan. All of this just seemed strange to me. But your point is also totally right Keith.

          1. As for the Hamilton controversy, I think it’s highly unethical.`[…] I couldn’t help but suspect that he was after Alonso just to hold him back, which he was unable anyway

            So let me get his right Carlitox, you calling Hamilton highly unethical because you suspect he overtook Vettel with the motive of getting past Alonso to then hold Alonso back?

            The only lack of ethics I see is your own in accusing someone of intending to do something that didn’t happen and for which you have absolutely no proof beyond your own dubious suspicions.

            1. However, more crazy things have hap paned in F1, I don’t agree with him, but at least he gave his reasons…. Also, slamming people for saying things you don’t agree with, is no better.

        2. Indeed. When he unlapped himself, he was immediately shown the blue flags. This means “get out of the way, do not impede those behind”. Which he did. By driving faster.

          I actually was wondering if the leaders might be shown the blue flags, they weren’t racing and Hamilton was behind and faster.

          1. I didn’t see him being shown blue flags. I heard the commentators questioning ‘are those blue flags for Hamilton’, but at that point I thought they were approaching other lapped drivers.

            1. he was once, just after he passed seb. but then not after.

              If a SC had come out unlapping himself would of made a huge difference and probably meant some points for himself and mclaren. he did nothing wrong.

              unlapping yourself is part of the sport.

            2. @matt90 I’m pretty sure Hamilton was shown blue flags/lights at turn 11 immediately after he passed Vettel. I Tweeted about it at the time:


            3. That’s interesting. I’m not sure whether that’s the right thing to do or not. If they are meant to yield after seeing 3 blue flags, it doesn’t give them a lot of time to start pulling away.

            4. I think we can put the first blue flag down to the flag marshal seeing a car ahead of the leaders and doing what comes naturally. After that the flag marshals probably got a message from Race Control to the affect that Hamilton was going faster and not holding them up.

              Indeed the blue flags are only for drivers holding up the leaders. To call unlapping unethical shows a complete ignorance of the rules and ethics of motor racing.

          2. Blue flags are for slower cars to let the faster cars thru to lap you.
            Hamilton was a faster car then those of the leaders.
            He acted right, simple

        3. Hakkinen666
          23rd July 2012, 2:35

          Screw vettel he cheated anyway, and Lewis had every right to try and unlap himself. He clearly had the faster car speed and why would he do that cheat vettel any favours anyway. Question is “Can anyone stop Alonso?” He is on fire

          1. Screw vettel he cheated anyway

            How immature. -.-

        4. Agree with Keith over this one.

          Imagine a scenario where he unlaps himself from Alonso and then there is a safety car, Lewis would have then been in with a legitimate shot of the race-win!!
          On the other hand, he doesn’t unlap himself and then there is a safety car, he is stuck where he is.

          1. Hardly likely or plausible, especially that let in the race. Hamilton was down in the lower teens at that point, so yes, he would have been on the same lap as the leaders, but would have been right at the back of the pack.

            1. Probably, but it would have given him a chance at points. Getting one more lap definitely gives a driver a better chance of points. You see all the time people go out on the last lap. If you’re lapped you can’t pass those people if they are on the lead lap.

              And in any case the probabilities for a Hamilton victory should not be a factor in his decision to unlap himself. Car speed compared to the driver in front of him is all that matters. Basically, if you can then you should.

          2. under safety car conditions, you can unlap yourself. so HAM wouldnt have been stuck.

            1. Correct.

              Although I don’t see that he did anything wrong with un-lapping himself as he did. Made me chuckle anyways, and I am NOT a Hamilton fan!

        5. SubSailorFl
          23rd July 2012, 4:00

          One safety car and Hamilton would’ve been back in the race. He had the pace to run with them and pass them and should’ve.

          1. Agreed!!!

        6. @keithcollantine

          Drivers are perfectly entitled to unlap themselves if they are going quickly enough. For Vettel and Horner to suggest Hamilton was behaving improperly or doing anything wrong in this respect is sheer arrogance.

          We finally agree on a couple of things!! ;)

        7. HewisLamilton
          23rd July 2012, 16:15

          I’m sorry, i must have missed something. When exactly did Hamilton unlap himself ? I didn’t see him pass Alonso to unlap himself. He had no business interfering with the race leaders.

          1. Obviously I meant unlapped himself from Vettel, rather than the race leader.

            He had no business interfering with the race leaders.

            Yes he did, because he was quick enough to unlap himself.

            1. HewisLamilton
              23rd July 2012, 17:55

              I am obviously not going to make my point with your McLaren tinted glasses on. He did not unlap himself.

            2. I’m not sure you understand what being lapped and unlapped are.

            3. HewisLamilton – If you want to use some other verb besides ‘unlapping’ to describe a driver overtaking someone who is a lap ahead of them but isn’t the race leader, then fine. But I can’t be bothered. If you choose to see this as a sign of bias rather than me not being remotely interested in your pedantry and hair-splitting, more fool you.

              None of which changes the fact that any driver who is faster than the car in front of him has the right to try and overtake it, regardless of what lap they’re on. That goes for Lewis Hamilton on Sebastian Vettel at Hockenheim this year just as it went for Robert Kubica on Lewis Hamilton at Interlagos four years ago.

            4. HewisLamilton
              23rd July 2012, 21:00

              The only way a driver can unlap himself, that is, get back on the lead lap, is to pass the leader.

              Can you please define another way that a car can get back on the lead lap?

              hamilton did not do this.

            5. Hamilton was a lap behind Vettel before he overtook him. After he overtook him he was no longer a lap behind Vettel. Therefore he unlapped himself from Vettel.

              But, just to reiterate, this is all a sideshow – the heart of the matter is that Hamilton did nothing wrong by unlapping himself from Vettel.

            6. HewisLamilton
              23rd July 2012, 22:02

              hamilton did not unlap himself. By timing and scoring, he was still a lap down after passing Vettel. Vettel was 1 to 1.25 sec behind the leader in 2nd place.
              But, just to reiterate, all hamilton did was interfere with the race leaders. At no point did he get back on the lead lap.

              As a vintage FF racer, I can say even at the level I race this is not tollerated among drivers.

            7. HewisLamilton
              23rd July 2012, 22:07

              Actually, fair enough. You have an opinion as do I.

            8. He can’t get back on the lead lap without unlapping himself from the 2nd placed driver first can he!!!

        8. Hamilton did nothing wrong and for Vettel to complain about it just shows how molly-coddled he is….

          So Hamilton is faster than Vettel and came up behind him… what did Vettel think Hamilton should have done ? That Hamilton should have slowed down to just follow Vettel around in a procession ? What if Hamilton had done that and had been caught by another backmarker ? Should they follow the slower car in front (Vettel) in a procession as if Vettel is a safety car ?

          To all of you saying Hamilton was interfering… my question to you is what do you think the (faster) Hamilton should have done ? And how is that racing ?

          By complaining, Vettel is simply revealing himself as an immature cry-baby… he only seems to be able to race when he’s in the fastest car and in front… otherwise he whinges about everyone else not bowing down to him…

          1. HewisLamilton
            23rd July 2012, 18:33

            How far behind Alonso was Vettel prior to hamilton interfering ?
            How far was Vettel behind Alonso after hamilton interfering?

            hamilton actually never unlapped himself, and interfered with the leaders at a point in the race tham hamilton was out of challenging either of the two for position.

            I hope hamilton enjoys his single WDC…..his one, his only and his LAST.

            1. He unlapped himself with respect to Vettel… the fact that Vettel fell back vs Alonso was because he was slower…

              Lets look at this FALSE gap argument…

              The gap ALO to VET was about 1.5 – 2 secs with ALO pegging the gap or even extending it immediately prior to HAM catching VET.

              HAM overtook VET… the gap ALO to HAM was about 1.5 secs and HAM to VET was <1sec (as low as 0.6 sec on some laps)…

              EVEN with the aid of DRS VET was unable to take the place back and HAM then pulled out 2.5 secs lead over VET closing to <0.6 sec to ALO. In other words VET was dropping back even after HAM overtook.

              If it was simply HAM interfering then VET would have retaken HAM at the next DRS zone but he didn't because he couldn't because he was slower.

              After HAM attacked ALO for several laps and was unable to get past he dropped back slightly (his tyre advantage went) and the gaps closed up ALO to HAM 1.5 secs, HAM to VET 1.5 secs… In other words VET was as far behind ALO as he was before the whole thing started.

              AGAIN.. I ask you… what was HAM supposed to do ? Stay behind VET even though he was faster ? What if another backmarker closed up behind HAM ?

              What if ALO had been further ahead of VET ? Would/should that have made any difference ? If ALO had been 20 secs ahead of VET do you also think that HAM should not have overtaken ?

              If you take that to its stupid conclusion then if the leader was the only one on the lead lap then no matter how slowly he was going nobody could overtake to unlap themselves….

              I'm not a HAM or ALO fan but its only the VET fans defending him, everyone else including all the drivers on the shows think that HAM did nothing wrong and VET was wrong to criticise HAM.

            2. HewisLamilton
              23rd July 2012, 22:57

              Too many What ifs Mark.

              Hamilton should have let Button by and stayed out of the fray for the lead of the race. It was touch and go with Alonso and Vettel and the DRS zone detection and so close to a second gap. Some laps Vettel had DRS open, others he did not. Alonso benefitted from traffic and allowed him to use his DRS. It was quite exciting. After hamilton got involved, it was a mute point.

              Maybe hamilton was showing Ferrari that he indeed can be a #2 driver and support the Ferrari #1?

            3. Whether the battle became uninteresting for you to watch has nothing to do with sport.

            4. Sorry Hewis… but the rules are there precisely to cater for the what ifs…

              If (as in your opinion) Hamilton was wrong to overtake Vettel then you have to define your terms… in what circumstances is it ok for a faster car to overtake a slower car and in what circumstances is it not ?

              You can’t define a rule retrospectively for a specific case (like this one)…. so please can you define precisely the circumstances in which a faster car that is a lap down should not be permitted to overtake a faster car that is a lap ahead ?

              I’d like to hear your definition…

              Because there was only anything wrong with what Hamilton did if you can define a rule that would apply to all the what ifs.

        9. I agree with Keith about the insincerity of the complaints by Vettel and Horner. I have absoultely no doubt Vettel would do the same as Hamilton in similar circumstances and would be entitled to do so. He showed absolutely no qualms about passing Hamilton at Interlagos in 2008 when the entire championship was to be decided in the next few corners.

          I also think Horner and Vettel want to unnerve Hamilton as a major rival, and I think there may also be some bad blood between all three over Hamilton potentially moving to Red Bull but being blocked by Vettel/Horner.

        10. people seem to forget that the blue flag is to signify that a FASTER car is approaching, not that they are going to be lapped. Had Hamilton got past and then tried to hold up Vettel then Red Bull could have said something. As it was, he got past then pulled away and in no way did he slow Vettel down. Therefore, nothing can be said and the Stewards should do nothing, as they did. Right decision.

      2. I read something only a few hours ago about Prost coming back from a lap down to win once. Was that unethical too?

        1. @matt90 Wasn’t that Clark, at Monza? he unlapped himself and was winning before a puncture or something put him 3rd in the end.

          Yeah, hardly unethical. If anything, bloody awesome.

          1. Maybe that too, but I was definitely reading an article that was purely about Prost being undervalued.

            1. Yes, it was Prost. It was 1982 South African GP. A very memorable race.

        2. I am not that old to have seen it, but have been told it was Clark in Monza who unlapped himself because of a puncture he had, and then was the leader of the race, but two laps before finish he ran out of fuel.
          I also seem to remember that there was a dispute after one race with Senna and Schumacher about unlapping.
          Anyway, I don’t see anything wrong with Hamilton in this case. It’s called racing, he was faster. The argument that Vettel said about holding back and make a gap is just ridiculous.

        3. HewisLamilton
          24th July 2012, 22:23

          Did hamilton unlap himself and win the race? He didn’t even unlap himself.

          Apples and Oranges.

      3. Hamilton was much faster then Vettel. Maybe Seb needs some anger management, he tends to use strong words towards fellow drivers all the time things don’t go his way.

        On Ferrari using Italian: why not?

        1. Because everyone must speak that foreign language… English. The queen demands it.

          1. It’s not just annoying to English speaking fans. It’s annoying to almost all world fans except Italians.
            I’m not British or American and i want the radio in English. I don’t even want it in my language because i know very few others will understand.
            English is a world recognized language for communication between people of different nationalities and multilingual sports.
            For that reason i bothered learning them, i can’t go though and start learning every team’s, mechanic and drivers language. It’s absolutely ridiculous.

            And they ain’t even doing it for the competition. They know very well that their competitors will have no problem dealing with it. They are just doing it for the viewers. And actually i think it’s obvious why they are doing it. So they can avoid criticism of comments on their radio messages(it’s not like Italians will say anything about a Ferrari message). “Alonso is faster than you” will now be delivered in fluent Italian.

            1. The team radio is for communicating with team drivers. They are an Italian team so they use Italian. End of discussion really. But…

              What if a driver can’t speak English? Do you demand their team still speaks to them in English? Since when is English a requirement for being a racing driver?

            2. Agreed

        2. Yes, what exactly is so absurd about an Italian team speaking in Italian?

        3. OmarR-Pepper (@)
          23rd July 2012, 14:26

          Agree. Noone can say Alonso won because he was speaking Italian… If a team wants to use Elf language or Morse code, it’s part of their strategy. So teams have also to publicly explain what is “PLAN B” when they mention it?

      4. xeroxpt (@)
        24th July 2012, 2:43

        What?! Guess the only thing we agree is that the penalty is fair. What a row you cause in this thread.

    2. …Says the driver who demoted Hamilton from the 5th position which he needed to secure his 2008 championship when Kubica (?) unlapping himself pushed Hamilton wide. Funny how things come around.

      1. Yup. I really don’t understand the current whinging about this move. Within the rules and he was faster.

      2. Would’ve loved McLaren to pit Hamilton a lap later than Alonso pitted at the end of the second stint to cover him off to not only make him a fundamental factor in the latter stages of the race (although he probably would’ve been shown blue flags on that occasion) but also see more in-depth how his pace would’ve stacked up in comparison to the leaders had he not suffered a puncture as he would’ve been similar in terms of fresh rubber.

      3. Yes, but in that case Vettel was racing Hamilton for position…

        1. I know. I was just pointing out that the last time something similar happened, Vettel was a benefactor and Hamilton lost out, and that was reversed this time.

      4. xeroxpt (@)
        24th July 2012, 2:56

        Yep Vettel has shot himself sometimes proving his supporters that he may not be as mature as they thought, nontheless i like how honest he can be especially off track.

    3. ShaneB457 (@shaneb12345678910)
      23rd July 2012, 0:12

      I see nothing wrong with Hamilton’s move on Vettel.. he was quicker at that stage so why shouldnt he pass him? He was on fresher tyres and its not like he’s going to sit behind him in dirty air. Vettel seems to think that since a backmarker passed him, it was like a HRT passing him for no reason and holding him up.

      1. The best thing was that Horner then said something along the lines of ‘interesting that he didn’t pass Alonso too.’ I really don’t now what he was implying here, as he wouldn’t have said anything to that effect if he was merely commenting on the obvious fact that Hamilton didn’t have enough pace to catch and pass both Vettel and then Alonso. So there must have been some implication. That Hamilton only wanted to hold up Vettel on behalf of Button? As though he wouldn’t have also held up Alonso if possible. That Alonso and Hamilton were in cahoots somehow? Because Alonso-Ferrari and Hamilton-McLaren sounds like a pairing without history…

        1. @matt90 Noted that too. In Honer’s world, Hamilton was holding Vettel to help Alonso extend his massive championship lead… they’re really best friends now

          1. Hmmm…. there’s an interesting angle… Hamilton helping Alonso to win the championship :)

          2. @JCost ..No .. horners trying to say hamilton was holding vettel to help button close the gap,while lewis has no intention of pulling a move on alonso

            1. But as he didn’t hold Vettel up at all once he was past, mentioning that he didn’t pass Alonso implies that Hamilton was doing so intentionally.

            2. He didn’t hold up VET.. he pulled away from him despite VET having a DRS advantage… and HAM closed and attacked ALO for at least 3 laps.

            3. The funny thing is everyone assuming Hamilton eased off rather than pass Alonso, as though that was a given! Nice compliment given neither Button nor Vettel could get past him at the end of the race! But Horner is implying Hamilton could have then?

              Nice to have Red Bull confirmation is Hamilton’s superior talent! (warning: some part of this post may be tongue in cheek)

    4. I loved the pass on Vettel, it was one of my highlights of the race. To say Hamilton spoiled their race by being faster and overtaking them seems a little bit sour. What was his alternative? Drive slower a second off his preferred pace for a few laps? I thought I saw a glimpse of the old Hamilton: not afraid to stick his nose out and ruffle a few feathers, not prepared to give best because the situation didn’t offer any material gains.

      Having said that, I was also interested that he parked it towards the end because no points were on offer to him. Why not Massa, or Grosjean, or Button at previous races?

      1. The team brought him in because the damage from the early puncture had intensified. It also now means he has a new gearbox for the next race.

      2. ShaneB457 (@shaneb12345678910)
        23rd July 2012, 0:20

        I think he damaged his car when he got that puncture. He said the car didnt feel right for the whole race after that.. I dont think he parked it.

      3. @splittimes
        Every lap on track is valuable information about the car, and tyres, teams usually have their “pointless” cars out on track near the race end, then retire them.Button was classified in every race so far, but he retired in Bahrain and Monaco. If Im right, not seeing the checquered flag means different rules apply to gearbox changes too.

        1. If the damage to the car was getting worse, I can understand it, and gearbox rules encourage it too. What I mean is, if you’re out of the points, don’t need the position for championship standings (HRT, Caterham, Toro Rosso etc) and aren’t gaining anything by going round then why doesn’t everyone just park it? Grosjean was in this situation, and Button has been at previous races. It just surprises me that they took this decision this time, when previously that hadn’t been desirable. What was different this time? Will we see this more often from teams?

          1. Even if we assume that the car could finish the race Mclaren still have more reason not to do it than HRT or Caterham because they are fighting for something a lot bigger and gaining the advantage of a new gearbox for the next race can play important role in winning that prize.
            HRT or Caterham aren’t fighting for any such thing. All they have to fight is those positions.

    5. I really am getting fed up with the attitude of Horner and Vettel. They come across as spoilt, immature and incredibly sore losers, and seem to think they have a right to win and that everyone should quite literally get out of their way. Twice this year they have called another driver stupid which shows a complete lack of respect.

      This wouldn’t really be acceptable if they were right, but considering they are totally and utterly in the wrong, and frankly making pretty stupid comments its even worse. Vettel’s comments of “if he wanted to go fast he should have backed off into space and gone fast there” truly astound me. Surely he’s not that stupid? What does he then expect Ham to do when he catches him back up?

      1. ShaneB457 (@shaneb12345678910)
        23rd July 2012, 0:27

        Totally agree with you on that they shouldnt complain about the Hamilton pass @jleigh .. but to be fair I thought they took the 20 second penalty really well. Horner said “It was disappointing to receive the penalty after the race but we accept this.” and Vettel said he respected the stewards decision.

      2. I was going to write about Horner’s post-race comments being perturbing. Him & Vettel expect drivers to just – roll over for his drivers because they are Honestly, I don’t see any support or logic in his argument.

      3. Vettel and Red Bull simply don’r accept defeat, which is ridiculous.
        They got to learn to lose because the attitude is always: blame it on the others.

    6. It’s things like this which make Vettel and Red Bull unlikeable for me. Of course, many of my favourite drivers have likely annoyed others in the same way, with equally irritating post-race statements, but calling unlapping yourself unethical seems about as anti-racing as saying that any overtaking is unfair on the leading driver, because they’d somehow earned that position.

      1. Traverse Mark Senior (@)
        23rd July 2012, 1:24

        I agree. Red Bull can dish it out, but they can’t take it. Thankfully the whole ‘Horner taking Bernie’s place’ rumour turned out to be just that, a rumour.

        1. I couldn’t even contemplate what would happen if yellow-tooth Horner had taken Bernie’s place. It would be one man on the circuit, Vettel (Just the way they like it).

      2. +1

      3. I agree. See this comment by Vettel:

        Why was he trying to race us? If he wants to go fast he can drop back find a gap and go faster there

        Arrogant and insincere. Really hope we see a lot of punctures for Vettel over the next few races and we can see whether he’s just happy to drive around quickly without actually getting anywhere.

    7. It’s wrong to expect a much faster driver to fall back through the field deliberately for a certain number of laps so that it doesn’t hinder a particular driver’s race & even If that was to happen, the driver would likely just catch them back up again ultimately, being unfortunately stuck in ‘traffic’ is part of racing. Hamilton at that point was running his own race theoretically, his own race being faster than the leaders in a phase of the race.

      As for Hamilton’s ‘stupidity’ well I don’t see helping his team-mate effectively ‘stupid’ regardless If that was the intention (of course you would want your team-mate to win If you’re not), Hamilton didn’t really had anything to lose at that point, his primary strategy probably wouldn’t have salvaged him any points plus he was just being himself & just driving fast.

      1. “of course you wan’t your team-mate to win if you’re not” Not if your name is Sebastien Vettel you don’t.

        1. or Fernando Alonso

          1. or every other driver

            1. It depends I reckon. If you are comfortably outdriving your team mate that season, then seeing him get 1 victory is hardly a bad thing- it just helps in the constructors, which must have at least a little importance to drivers.

            2. I’d say even Massa is sick of it by now.

    8. What Hamilton did was perhaps mildly unethical, but he did nothing wrong, had the pace and helped his team mate. Not sure what the deal is.

      I also wonder what Vettel felt about overtaking Hamilton in Brazil 2008? Hamilton got barged off line by Kubica unlapping himself and then Vettel profited by overtaking Hamilton. Which almost cost Hamilton the championship.

      Why should Hamilton not interfere when Vettel obviously had no qualms of doing so himself?

      And then it’s just karma that Vettel calls Hamilton stupid only to find out that he himself was really the stupid one in that race.

      1. I don’t see even the slight unethical angle. He didn’t pass him and then try to drive slower to annoy him, he passed and drove away not bothering his race. At no point did he try to ruin Vettel’s race.

      2. good point well made, I’ve been banging on about this incident all morning.

      3. Unethical is how Formula 1 is run. Really can’t see how racing on a race track within the sport’s regulations can be branded unethical or even unsporting. Unless it’s now become unsporting to compete. More likely the opposite: Red Bull’s complaints are unsporting.

    9. Would a fairer Blue Flag rule not dictate that Vettel should have been shown a blue flag as Hamilton was faster. Why do the leaders have the right to ruin a faster drivers race who they aren’t racing against anymore so than a back marker does to the leaders?

      1. despite being about to or not be a lap down they are still racing. They are racing to keep themselves on the lead lap.

        which is vital for a number of reasons. one being a SC another once you start being lapped ur constantly getting out of the way you can never move forward beyond the position of the driver not a lap down.

      2. @jleigh Definitely not. If anything the blue flag rules are too strict at the moment and should be relaxed.

        1. @keithcollantine Yes they probably but are too strict, but as they are at the moment I feel it would be much fairer if leaders could also be shown blue flags when a faster back marker is approaching. Say for example a driver was leading by miles. He then turns down the engine and slows down a bit to cruise to the finish. Meanwhile 3rd and 4th are battling for the podium and pit, coming out either side of the leader a lap down. They are now marginally quicker so 3rd pulls away to an easy podium whilst 4th is stuck behind the leader. Why does the leader have any more right to interfere with the fight for the podium that he isn’t involved in than the guy in 20th?

          Of course, I would prefer no-one having to get out the way for the blue flags, but as the rule is now I think it would be fairer if anyone can get a blue flag if a faster car they are not racing is approaching.

        2. +1

          Totally agree Keith…. personally I’d get rid of the blue flag rule and make the leaders OVERTAKE the backmarkers… if they can’t then they’ll be caught out by the better racers who can…

          Like the old days when overtaking backmarkers was a key skill…

      3. Drop Valencia!
        23rd July 2012, 9:25

        Actually the blue flags can be shown to the leading cars, but they have no obligation to act in that situation, the only time I have seen that happen was Monaco, it may have been 96, where a slow car was infront defending brilliantly.

    10. I think what’s weird about Hamilton’s actions (not he specifically, Kubica did the same to him in Brazil in 2008) is that with the Blue Flags demanding people to move over and don’t spoil the leader’s race when they are being lapped, it seems a bit of a contradiction that a lapped guy is allowed to battle through the leaders like that.

      I’m not against drivers unlapping themselves, it’s just it’s a bit confusing that they are allowed to “spoil” the leaders race if they are behind but they strictly need to move WAY away if they are ahead. Sometimes people are battling for points and they lost a lot of time letting the leaders by. Hamilton had no chance to improve his possition at that moment, so you can also say that he shouldn’t have put himself in the middle of the leaders’ battle. After all, they are a lap ahead for a reason.

      To be honest, I think Red Bull should’ve told Vettel to let Hamilton by and try to follow him closely. Hamilton was all over Alonso’s gearbox, and had he overtook him, Vettel could’ve benefited.

      1. @fer-no65 I partly agree and I think your last paragraph is exactly right. Part of the skill for the backmarkers is knowing how to give up a place to the leaders when being lapped whilst losing minimal time. We also often see a Caterham high up the field during the pit stop sequence and they often have to look at the bigger picture and let faster cars past rather than battling for a position which will ultimately cost them time at the finish.

        In this case I think Vettel should have been told by his team that Hamilton was coming and to allow Hamilton to make the pass with least time lost to