|© Vladimir Rys/Getty Images/Red Bull Racing
Sebastian Vettel was annoyed with Lewis Hamilton’s antics at the German Grand Prix pointing out that he lost time behind the McLaren after the Briton unlapped himself.
The Red Bull driver lost ground in the middle stint after he was held up by the 2008 world champion, who was running in the bottom half of the field, possibly allowing Jenson Button to get ahead of the German at the pit stop.
“That was not nice of him. I don’t see the point why he’s trying to race us,” said Vettel who gesticulated several times in the race.
“If he wants to go fast he can drop back, find a gap and go fast there. But it’s a bit stupid to disturb the leaders,” he remarked. “He was a lap down so I don’t see the point anyways. I think that potentially lost us the position to Jenson. Because soon after that we pitted, I think only two or three laps after that.
“If you want to go quick and you're a lap down and there's no chance to win the race any more, I think you should respect that and use common sense,” he added. “To be honest I didn't expect him to attack because I didn't see the point, and then I was surprised when he was side-by-side and I lost quite a bit.”
The ensuing battle was welcome for leader Fernando Alonso as he benefitted by opening a bit of a gap from the reigning champion.
“He didn't mind,” Vettel said.
After passing Vettel, Hamilton started sizing up the Ferrari driver but was unable to overtake him.
“I saw that Alonso was defending against Lewis so obviously he knew that as soon as he gets passed by Lewis he will lose some time, so he tried to avoid that, especially as we were approaching the pit stops,” observed Vettel.
The championship leader meanwhile admittedly eked out an advantage by keeping Hamilton behind him.
“For me, it was a good position to have Hamilton between me and Sebastian because we were approaching the pit stop time and having Hamilton there meant that he was around a second behind you and Sebastian was another second or 1.5 seconds behind Lewis, so this 2.5 seconds to Sebastian was very good, approaching the pit stop time so I tried to keep Lewis behind,” the Spaniard explained.
McLaren however was not impressed with Vettel’s choice of words and defended its driver.
"Hamilton was quicker, he overtook and he pulled away, so I'm not sure what stupidity there is in that," said team principal Martin Whitmarsh.
Sporting director Sam Michael was unequivocal about what happened on the track between the two drivers in question.
"When you get a blue flag, you have two choices. You let the car past, or you speed up significantly,” Michael was quoted saying by AFP.
"So we told him to speed up significantly and overtake Vettel and he did so. He didn't hold Vettel up at all because Vettel couldn't keep up with him. So it didn't have any material impact on Vettel's race and it's completely legal," Michael explained.