Red Bull Racing boss Christian Horner has made it clear that he won’t tolerate a repeat of the collision that cost the team a one-two in Tutkey.
He refused to place total blame on either Mark Webber or Sebastian Vettel, saying that they had not given each other room, in contradiction to the usual pre-race instructions that they should.
“It was a massively close race between ourselves and McLaren today,” said Horner. “We managed to get ourselves ahead of the McLaren, we had a better pit stop, we had a better strategy with Sebastian. And we had them in first and second.
“The time difference was so small, and Sebastian obviously on the prime tyre felt happier than Mark, and for a couple of laps was looking pretty dangerous there. And then he got a run on him and we all saw what happened. To give away 28 points to McLaren… We gave it to them on a plate today, which is disappointing for all the guys that put in so much hard work. Very frustrating.
“They are both at fault. Should they have given each other room? Yes.”
Asked to apportion blame, he said: “I think the two of them, they’re big boys. If you look at the McLaren drivers, they both gave each other room, they raced each other hard, and I didn’t see two McLarens in the fence. It’s really disappointing for the team to get into that position. The one thing we always ask, yes they can race each other, but give each other room, and that’s exactly what didn’t happen today.
“I just think that they were far too far over on the left. Sebastian had got a run, and then he came across too early. For me they didn’t give each other enough room, it’s as simple as that. As we saw with the McLarens, they fought each other and didn’t manage to hit each other.”
Horner contradicted suggestions by Red Bull motor sport boss Helmut Marko that Webber was totally at fault.
“Absolutely not. I think Sebastian had a clear run, and he was quicker at that point in the race. And Mark kept him on the dirty line, and Sebastian came over arguably a bit too early. We could see it coming for a couple of laps.
“The drivers are fairly strong willed individuals, but they both drive for the team, they both recognise that. They’ve always been very good in the past, as we’ve seen in Malaysia, as we’ve seen in other places. They’ve been racing each other very closely throughout this season. It’s hugely frustrating to see this event happen today.”
Vettel didn’t apologise when he went to the pit wall before the end of the race, but Horner said he had no issue with that.
“He hadn’t seen a replay, I think that he was frustrated, Mark’s frustrated, we need to sit down with both drivers and go through it. We’ve got to bounce back. It’s inevitably when you’ve got two guys fighting at the front that occasionally you’re going to get incidents. What you don’t expect is to see them within your own team.”
Asked whether this was his worst day as team boss, Horner said: “It’s a very frustrating day for the team, because both of them drive for the team at the end of the day, and the team lost 28 points, and both of them lost out today, and it’s really disappointing when we should have had a one-two finish.
“It’s one that we’ll have to manage. They’re both grown-ups, they both have to look at it objectively, and we need to move on from here. What’s happened, happened. We need to make sure that we go to the next race and make sure that as a team, including the drivers, they learn from this, and we don’t find ourselves in this position again.”