Tyre failure is “unacceptable” says furious Vettel

Sebastian Vettel was keen to speak his mind when he faced TV cameras just a few minutes after a spectacular tyre failure robbed him of third place at Spa.

Vettel retired less than two laps from the flag after suffering a failure of the right rear, as experienced by Nico Rosberg on Friday.

The German denied that he and Ferrari had pushed the Pirellis too hard by trying to get from lap 14 to the finish at lap 43.

“How many laps I was missing, not many?,” he said. “Things like that are not allowed to happen, full stop. If it happened 200 metres earlier, I’m not standing here now, I’m with 300 [km/h] stuck in Eau Rouge. I don’t know what else needs to happen.

“I tell you what is upsetting, one thing is the result. This is racing. For sure we deserved to finish on the podium. The other thing as I said is if this happens earlier… I think it’s a sort of theme that’s going around, nobody’s mentioning, but it’s unacceptable.”

Vettel talked to the FIA about tyres in Friday afternoon’s drivers’ briefing, soon after the Rosberg failure. Asked if his view was taken seriously he said: “I think it was. But what’s the answer? Same as every time, there was a cut, debris, maybe something wrong with the bodywork, the driver went wide. Bullshit. If Nico tells us that he didn’t go off the track, he didn’t go off the track. Same with me, I didn’t go off the track, it’s just out of the blue, the tyre explodes. As I said if this happens earlier, then #####.”

Vettel said that the drivers should talk about the issue.

“I think we need to speak to each other. It’s probably not as bad as it was in Silverstone some years ago, but it’s not acceptable.”


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6 responses to “Tyre failure is “unacceptable” says furious Vettel

  1. Levergne R.

    Hey Vettel! How many others tried to go 30 laps without a tyre change?!!!!!!

  2. Andy

    Understand his point fully, but can’t see how he can say he didn’t go off track, before it blew, he clearly went off track(right wheel past left kerb).

    Obviously will never know if this had impact on it or not, but he went of track and runs increased risk of a issue.

  3. Mick

    Of course there needs to be a thorough examination of what happened but Vettel needs to think carefully about what he wants to change and the potential consequences before he starts making demands.

    Should the tyres be stronger? Pirelli can make a tyre that lasts the whole race if requested but racing will become boring.

    Should Pirelli have given firmer advice about how many laps the tyres are safe to do? If so the range of potential strategies will be reduced and teams will be unable to react to unusual circumstances by doing something a bit different. Lawyers will ensure ‘advice’ becomes ‘rules’ for fear of teams being sued. Imagine if Vettel had pitted a few laps before the end & lost a load of places because Pirelli told them to, and then post race the tyre was examined & looked rock solid.

    The sidewalls of the tyres did show a scary amount of flexing this weekend at the top of eau rouge and Vettel was one of the drivers pushing to track limits and sometimes beyond after the drivers asked the FiA to remove a kerb ‘for safety reasons’. I was surprised we didn’t get any referrals to the stewards for exceeding the track limits.

    I think the tyre failure was ultimately the result of all four elements together – Vettel abused the track limits; Ferrari were too risky on strategy; Pirelli could have given clearer guidance; the FiA could have enforced track limit rule firmly in quali & race.

    I hope we don’t get any new hasty regulations.

  4. Let me just start by saying that I totally agree with my man Vettie: it’s been a hard day’s night and he’s been wöking like a dawg. Pirelli’s mind blowing rubber is somewhat questionable. Abusing track limits? Just because some dude in the media centre tweeted it doesn’t make it real. As Matie Archie said, here at Farrari we base our strategy on data and data on our strategy – whatever that means. Unacceptable. Also the engines didn’t roar on TV, it was like Flacido Domingo having a bad day. Even more unacceptable.

  5. Ernest Zamora Jr.

    Given I haven’t really been the biggest fan of the mandate for Pirelli tires the last few years I tried to think of tire regs that would a) lead to a multiple stop race while at the same time b) allow drivers to push 100% all of the time.

    So here it is in some simple bullet points:
    1) Allow each team 3 sets of tires for each race
    2) There would be a prime and two options. The prime would be the tire that all teams would have to start the race on. The first option would be 1-1.5 seconds quicker. The second option would be about a 1 second quicker than the first option.
    3) It would completely be up to the team if they used 1 set, 2 sets, or all 3 sets. The only limiting factor would be that they have to use the sets in specific order (harder to softer / durable to faster). In other words they always have to use the tires in the following order: prime, first option, second option. No first option until running the prime first. No second option until running the first option first.
    4) The incentive for teams would be to push 100% on the prime in order to pit and go onto the first option. And then push 100% on the first option in order to get to the second option.
    5) The primes and options would be very durable tires with the ability to push them 100%! However, based on realities of physics they would start to get slower to the point that team’s could switch to the options as they would reach a crossover point in performance.
    6) Strategy implications could be quite varied as at some tracks you might want to pit after the first stint very early as the options might stay fast longer. At other tracks the optimum strategy might be to run the primes longer.
    7) The delta between the primes and options could be tweaked to highly incentivize teams to pit twice at each race. Again pushing 100% all of the time. Essentially a race from the prime to the options within the overall race.

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