Vettel defends Hamilton's "dickhead" remark

Sebastian Vettel has launched a strong defence of Formula 1 rival Lewis Hamilton over comments the Mercedes driver made about Max Verstappen straight after the Bahrain Grand Prix.

Vettel defends Hamilton's "dickhead" remark
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB14 and Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+ battle
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMGlhp celebrates on the podium
Valtteri Bottas, Mercedes AMG F1, 2nd position, Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, 3rd position, and Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, 1st position, spray Waard, a non-alcoholic Champagne Rose Water substitute, on the podium
Max Verstappen, Red Bull Racing RB14 and Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 W09 EQ Power+ collide
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes AMG F1, 3rd position, inspects his trophy
Lewis Hamilton, Mercedes-AMG F1 on the drivers parade

Hamilton was heard calling Verstappen "a dickhead" in the drivers' room before the podium ceremony, prompting questions about it in the post-race press conference.

But when Hamilton was asked about what he said, race winner Vettel interjected and expressed sympathy for his rival.

"Can I answer that?" Vettel said. "It's not fair – I don't know what Lewis did, we've all been in that situation.

"We fight someone and sometimes we go wheel-to-wheel, and it's close, and we have a lot of adrenaline going.

"Do you think, if you compare it to football, if you have a microphone on a footballer's mouth that everything he says is something nice, and it's a nice message when the guy tackles him and sometimes he fouls him?

"I don't think it's justified to give us this kind of shit question and making up a story out of nothing."

Vettel said it was normal for a driver to react emotionally in high-pressure situations.

"We are just racing, we are full of adrenaline and we say these things," he added. "If I hit you in your face, you are not going to tell me, 'Sebastian, that wasn't nice'.

"It's a human reaction, and sometimes I feel it's all a bit blown up and artificial if we have these questions trying to make something out of nothing."

Hamilton, who told TV crews "emotion is always firing when you get out of the car", said he couldn't "really remember" making the comment, before referencing that he recalled it being in the podium room.

"I realised I had to back out, but he continued to come across, and that didn't leave me any room, so we ended up touching," he said.

"I was just really grateful that my car wasn't broken and I could continue.

"That would have really been difficult. My thoughts are on the world championship, and I've lost two races now.

"I am 17 points down already after just two races. Hopefully when we go to the next race we will have a better fight with the Ferraris."

Additional reporting by Scott Mitchell

shares
comments
Hamilton says Verstappen move "silly" and "unnecessary"

Previous article

Hamilton says Verstappen move "silly" and "unnecessary"

Next article

Gasly's drive "made a man out of him" - Marko

Gasly's drive "made a man out of him" - Marko
Load comments
The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers Prime

The tough balancing act facing Schumacher’s Netflix film producers

Michael Schumacher is the latest sporting superstar to get the ‘Netflix treatment’, with a special documentary film airing on the US streaming giant’s platform this month. DAMIEN SMITH has the inside track on how the filmmakers gained access to tell the human story behind one of Formula 1’s most publicity-shy champions - while the man himself, for obvious reasons, is in absentia… 

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery Prime

Why Verstappen should be confident of Russian GP recovery

For the second race in a row, Mercedes has ended the first day of track action on top. It’s in a commanding position at the Russian Grand Prix once again – this time largely thanks to Max Verstappen’s upcoming engine-change grid penalty. But there’s plenty to suggest all hope is not lost for the championship leader at Sochi...

Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1 Prime

Why dumping the MGU-H is the right move for F1

OPINION: With its days apparently numbered, the MGU-H looks set to be dropped from Formula 1’s future engine rules in order to entice new manufacturers in. While it may appear a change of direction, the benefits for teams and fans could make the decision a worthwhile call

Formula 1
Sep 23, 2021
The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots Prime

The floundering fortunes of F1’s many Lotus reboots

Team Lotus ceased to exist in 1994 - and yet various parties have been trying to resurrect the hallowed name, in increasingly unrecognisable forms, ever since. Damien Smith brings GP Racing’s history of the legendary team to an end with a look at those who sought to keep the flame alive in Formula 1.

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background Prime

Why the 2021 title fight is far from F1's worst, despite its toxic background

OPINION: Formula 1 reconvenes for the Russian Grand Prix two weeks after the latest blow in ‘Max Verstappen vs Lewis Hamilton’. While the Silverstone and Monza incidents were controversial, they thankfully lacked one element that so far separates the 2021 title fight from the worst examples of ugly championship battles

Formula 1
Sep 22, 2021
How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus Prime

How Mika Hakkinen thrived at Lotus

Mika Hakkinen became Michael Schumacher’s biggest rival in Formula 1 in the late-90s and early 2000s, having also made his F1 debut in 1991. But as MARK GALLAGHER recalls, while Schumacher wowed the world with a car that was eminently capable, Hakkinen was fighting to make his mark with a famous team in terminal decline

Formula 1
Sep 21, 2021
The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey  Prime

The forgotten F1 comeback that began Jordan’s odyssey 

Before Michael Schumacher – or anyone else – had driven the 191 (or 911 as it was initially called), Eddie Jordan turned to a fellow Irishman to test his new Formula 1 car. JOHN WATSON, a grand prix winner for Penske and McLaren, recalls his role in the birth of a legend…

Formula 1
Sep 20, 2021
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Prime

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says Stuart Codling.

Formula 1
Sep 18, 2021