Moments after the race restarted in Bahrain following the massive crash, Ferrari driver, Sebastian Vettel, was furious with Charles Leclerc for compromising his race.
It was a close miss between the two and could have easily been yet another Styrian Grand Prix 2020, had Vettel not released his foot from the throttle.
However, Mattia Binotto later revealed that both the Ferrari drivers cleared the air in a friendly way. “The Vettel-Leclerc tension in the restart? After the race, the two have already clarified in a friendly way,” Binotto told SkySport.
“This is the most important thing. From what we can see, there was space to pass. Charles was managing his trajectory.”
Vettel’s decision to slow down hoping to avoid a collision with Leclerc ended up hurting him more than he could have imagined. He lost over three places in the process.
To make things worse, he struggled terribly with his first stint and ended up lagging in P18 at one point. However, a decent recovery drive saw the German fight his way up to P13 by the end of the race.
Vettel was starting the race from P10, while Leclerc was starting from P12 on the grid. The German had a decent start. However, as the cars swarmed into turn 1, Vettel had a pacy McLaren on the outside, and surprisingly a late-braking Ferrari on the inside, over the kerbs.
To avoid being sandwiched by the two, Vettel had to take his foot off the gas. Hence, he was definitely slower than the others while exiting turn 2.
Consequently, he ended up losing places to others from behind as well, leaving him stranded well out of the top 10. Eventually, Vettel failed to regain his position as the German left the Bahrain Grand Prix empty-handed.
Vettel immediately took to his team radio to portray his disappointment with Leclerc, following the latter’s aggressive move on the inside. “And again he can’t just do that, as if I wasn’t there,” Vettel told his engineer.
“It’s the same as Austria, seriously. This time I, you know I should have crashed. Maybe, it was the better option.”
The Styrian Grand Prix this year witnessed a similar incident, as Vettel mentioned. During the race start, while going into turn 3 after the long straight, Leclerc failed to slow his car down on time.
Hence, he ended up slamming into the back of his teammate, who eventually retired after serious damage to his rear wing. Meanwhile, Leclerc was still going, but his run lasted for just five laps, as barge board damage forced the Monegasque to retire his car as well.
Although Vettel failed to score points at the Bahrain Grand Prix, he still has a second chance coming his way in the form of the Sakhir Grand Prix. Can the German bring his car home in the top 10 this weekend?