Sebastian Vettel fine with a point but knows only few cars finished in F1 Tuscan GP in a lottery Mugello race.
Ferrari’s 1000th race, the 2020 F1 Tuscan GP was appropriately strange in the circumstances, for few more so than the team celebrating their anniversary, who derived satisfaction from the fact that they had both cars within the points – a stark reminder of the struggles of the outfit.
Vettel was narrowly within the points, coming tenth after fighting Williams’ George Russell, the latter of whom put up a valiant effort in spite of his car’s apparent pace disadvantage. By the skin of his teeth, Vettel missed out on P9, as Alfa Romeo’s Kimi Raikkonen – carrying a time penalty – looked set to lose his position to the Ferrari driver, only to develop a gap large enough to ensure him his position.
And, though he saw the silver lining that was the double-points finish, Vettel had a hard time getting enthusiastic over such a result, as he was upset not to have capitalised on the chaotic race – stating that it was only 12 cars in the end. Granted, he had to overcame a Lap 1 tangle with McLaren’s Carlos Sainz but even with stoppages, they were far behind.
“It was a busy afternoon but if you have three chances, you hope that, you get more than one point,” said Vettel. “First of all, there weren’t that many other cars behind us. I think, we fought really hard and tried to do everything we can, obviously we are not happy with the positions that we had.
“It was a tough day for us, the car was difficult to drive, we didn’t really have the pace to pus more. I would have loved to capitalise a little bit more on other people’s mistakes, but at least we were quite lucky to generally stay out of trouble. We were not quick enough and it is difficult to answer why. There is more than one reason.
“Obviously our car is not quick enough, but I think it was expected for us to have better race pace so we need to have a look at that,” Vettel added. It was his first points since Barcelona as he languishes in 13th with just the 17 to his name.
For team boss Mattia Binotto, it was welcoming with both cars in points for the first time but it was still just five points. “A very disappointing result brings to an end an historic weekend for Ferrari, with our one 1000th F1 Grand Prix,” he said.
“While in qualifying, at least with Charles we managed to get a result in line with our expectations, we didn’t have the pace to allow our drivers to fight with their nearest rivals, suffering especially with tyre degradation. Both Charles and Sebastian did the best they could, given the performance level of the car.
“We are working hard to try and correct its basic faults, but it’s not something that can be done in a short space of time, nor with a few updates. That doesn’t mean we won’t be bringing new solutions between now and the end of the season, but we have to be realistic with ourselves and with our fans.” Ferrari is expected to have some aero upgrades at Sochi but it won’t be something huge to bring direct performance.
Aside the on track action, Vettel was at his cheeky self speaking on the radio. At the second red flag, the German asked: “How many races are left…oh sorry…how many laps left in this race?”, to which his engineer responded with 14..13.
Meanwhile, post race, while the engineer relayed Top 10 information and thanked the German, Vettel stated: “OK, I pushed as hard as I could. Are we P11 then? Thanks guys, I pushed as hard as we can at the end there, yeah, the car was getting nervous at the rear. Is there another re-start or that’s it?”
Here’s the Lap 1 moment: https://www.formula1.com/en/video/2020/9/2020_Tuscan_Grand_Prix__Vettel_runs_into_Sainz.html
Here’s what Sebastian Vettel said about George Russell
Here’s what Sebastian Vettel said on Carlos Sainz clash
Here’s Mick Schumacher driving F2004