'Schumacher wouldn't have made Vettel's 2018 mistake'

Thursday, 20 december 2018, 06:38 , by Matthew Scott

Ross Brawn says Sebastian Vettel may have been guilty of being a "neutral passenger" as Ferrari's upgrades in 2018 backfired and suggested that a similar downturn would not have been allowed to continue over several races when Michael Schumacher was at the team.

An update package introduced for the Singapore GP went wrong as Ferrari suddenly lagged off the pace of Mercedes – having previously delivered an arguably better package across the European leg of the campaign.

The same package remained on the car in Russia and Japan – with Lewis Hamilton winning all three races to streak clear of Vettel in the drivers' championship.

Once the car was reverted to its previous spec, Kimi Raikkonen won the United States GP, and Brawn says Vettel could have spotted the mistake – and demanded it was rectified – earlier.

"Seb had a mixed 2018," Brawn told F1's official website. "He's had some very good performances, and played a big part in taking the team forward, but in the end, Seb and the team didn't deliver.

"They had a strong year but they have got to make that next step and deliver – and that's Seb and the team.

"I don't know the dynamic or chemistry in the team or Seb's relationship in the team or how that all works. He made one or two errors, which is unfortunate but with drivers, that can happen.

"The team seemed to make a wrong turn technically for several races and then they came back again to an older spec which corrected their form.

"As a driver you have to be involved with those things, you can't be a neutral passenger.

"I recall when I was at Ferrari, if we had something we were uncertain about, Michael would be banging my door down to talk about it and spend time with the engineers and work until he got himself comfortable with what was going on.

"That motivates a team and can be a catalyst for people to look at things in a different way or different perspective.

"The difference between success and failure is often down to small things. I don't think he or the team need to change things dramatically, they just need that final bit of polish to get off the line."

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Comments (10)

  • Karl Davy
    fair ... vettels a good driver but he never really went thro a period of learning that the greats have ... he went straight into a championship winning car ... didnt really have to get dirty to win anything in those days even tho the championships were close they werent really won on driver skill and hes paying for it now making mistakes other newer drivers are also making ***cough*** crashstappen ***cough ***
  • Dave Nelson
    I wonder if trust in simulators and things like cfd are too high, and because they have faith in the sim data they are maybe less likely to think that it's a correlation issue and to step back on track
  • Steven James Broadhurst
    Give him a break ffs Schumacher is once in a generation. The guy is human. Still one of the greats.
  • Pranay Dawne
    Alonso wouldn't have made those mistakes either
  • Gary Campbell
    It all over so forget about it ffs
  • Aidan Millward
    Nah, would have punted Hamilton off instead XD
  • Russ Burgess
    Neither would Hamilton
  • John Lee Alameda
    Thanks captain obvious.
  • Colin Hayes
    Kimi wouldn't have either...

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