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Vettel: Apology but no remorse

2013-04-11 11:20

ALL EYES ON RED BULL IN CHINA: Red Bull is still dealing fallout stemming from Sebastian Vettel’s (centre) win over team mate Mark Webber (left) in Sepang. Image: AFP

ALAN BALDWIN

SHANGHAI, China - Formula 1 World champion Sebastian Vettel has made clear that his apology to Red Bull for ignoring team orders at the 2013 Malaysian Grand Prix did not extend to remorse about winning.

Vettel said during an interview ahead of the 2013 Chinese GP: "I told the team straight afterwards that 'I apologise for putting myself above the team which I didn't mean to do'. There's not much more to say really.

"I don't apologise for winning. I think that's why people employed me in the first place and why I'm here. I love racing so that's what I do."

MALAYSIAN CONTROVERSY


Vettel was told to stay behind race-leading team mate Mark Webber at the 2013 race at Sepang and both drivers asked to ease off to save tyres and fuel to ensure a 1-2 finish.

Webber was incensed when Vettel disregarded the instruction to hold position and overtook, giving his team mate the cold shoulder after the race once he had reminded him of the coded instruction 'Multi-21'.

Team principal Christian Horner has explained that 'Multi-21' refers to car two (Webber) preceding car one (Vettel). The order 'Multi-21' would have been issued in the other 1-2 scenario.

The spat between the team mates, whose rivalry has had some notable flare-ups over the years including a collision in Turkey while fighting for the lead in 2010, is likely to be simmering this weekend despite the team trying to move on.

Vettel said the Malaysian controversy had taken attention away from what was a great performance by the team at Sepang. "Unfortunately, people didn't say that we performed well on the day," he said. "As a team I think we did a very good job and got a fantastic result.

"The whole race I think we worked excellently with the tyres etc so I think that's what people forgot. Obviously, what stuck in their heads was the way the race ended."

Vettel was open-minded about the 2013 Chinese GP.

"We learned quite a bit from the first two races. China will be different again... I think we are still in the learning process," he said.

Stay with Wheels24 for the 2013 Formula 1 season – fresh reports every day.
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