Ferrari F1 team throws away potential podium finishes in Brazil



Formula One

November 17, 2019 04:01 PM

Ferrari F1 team throws away potential podium finishes in Brazil

Contact between the two Ferrari drivers leaves them out of the running

Sam Hall



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Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc saw their day end badly Sunday in Brazil.

Sebastian Vettel and Charles Leclerc threw away potential podium positions Sunday as the two Ferrari drivers collided in the closing stages of the F1 Brazilian Grand Prix.
From the start of the season, when team principal Mattia Binotto stated that Vettel was Ferrari’s No. 1 driver, the relationship between Vettel and Leclerc has been tense. In each of the first few races, Leclerc was instructed to move over to allow Vettel past, but as the season progressed, Leclerc edged himself onto equal status within the team.
With second position in the constructors’ championship all but confirmed, Ferrari allowed its drivers to battle it out for third. However, it is unlikely that this will continue to be the case after Vettel appeared to move over on Leclerc, causing contact that ended both of the scarlet cars’ races.
“From my side, I overtook in turn one which I enjoyed this overtake, and then in turn three close because I was aware Seb would try again which he did,” said Leclerc. “He went around the outside where there was little space but I left the space he took and then towards the end of the straight he started to squeeze me a little bit to the inside.”

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“We were very close. Everything happened very quick and as soon as he went to the inside we touched and then I had a puncture.”
Leclerc confirmed that the two drivers had not yet spoken about the incident, saying, “Not yet. I spoke to Mattia (Binotto) but that’s it.
“I haven’t seen Seb yet but I’m pretty sure we are mature enough to put that behind us. At the end, both of us feel extremely sorry for the team. This is the end result, both of the cars did not finish and this is very disappointing.”
Questioned on his apparent move to the left, which caused the collision, Vettel said, “At that point I didn’t have much on the right and I obviously had a better run out of turn three and tried to pass.”

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“It’s a shame for the team that we didn’t finish the race and that has priority.”
Binotto was pleased that both of his drivers felt sorry for the team but despite wearing a calm demeanor in front of the cameras, it was obvious that he was furious.
“I feel sorry for the team,” said Binotto. “I think the drivers need to feel sorry for the team because at the end, they were free to fight. I think our second position in the constructors’ is given, so they were battling for their own position in the drivers’ championship so free to fight, but they know that silly mistakes are something we should avoid for the team itself.
“Somehow today, it was a small contact I have to say, but there will be time to analyze, time to look at the video. I don’t want to do that in the heat as well with the drivers.”

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