Scuderia Ferrari German driver Sebastian Vettel shrugged off his penalty for crashing into Red Bull’s Max Verstappen during the British Grand Prix last weekend, admitting it mattered more that he apologised for the unfortunate incident.
The four-time Formula One world champion was given a 10-second time penalty for hitting Max Verstappen and had two penalty points added to his licence, putting him on a total of six. Although Daniel Ricciardo went unpunished for a similar collision with Verstappen in Baku last year, Sebastian Vettel said he wasn’t concerned by the penalty: “Of course initially I thought there was a gap and the gap closed but after some laps I realised it was my mistake so I went up to Max and told him what I thought.” – Sebastian Vettel said in response to a question from RaceFans. “That for me counts more than any stewards’ decision to be honest.”
Sebastian Vettel thought he saw an opportunity to re-pass Verstappen, who had just overtaken him. “Obviously he was a bit faster, closing quite quickly and passed very easily before turn 15.” – he explained – “But then he ran a bit wide so I thought I can sneak back. I thought there was a gap which then turned out not to be there. It’s a misjudgement from my side.”
Max Verstappen said Sebastian Vettel came straight to him after the race to apologise: “When he jumped out of his car he immediately came to me,” said the Red Bull driver. “He apologised, said he misjudged the braking, [his] fault. It’s disappointing but you can’t change it now,” he concluded.