Sebastian Vettel has been warned to watch his manners, according to Germany’s Kolner Express newspaper.
After Valencia, where following his retirement the Red Bull driver admitted he suspected a conspiracy, German motor sport association president Hans-Joachim Stuck said Vettel needed to be careful about being cited for “unsportsmanlike conduct”. Vettel had suggested the safety car was called onto the Spanish circuit chiefly to cut his huge lead.
“Sebastian Vettel should learn to be a good loser,” said Stuck.
The Cologne tabloid Express said Vettel’s theory did not escape the attention of the governing FIA, who have placed the reigning world champion on a sort of unofficial ‘probation’. Already in 2012, Vettel is said to have caught Jean Todt’s attention with his “cucumber” insults against backmarker Narain Karthikeyan.
“We know that, quite often, Vettel speaks roughly after disappointments, which is not a good example,” an unnamed FIA official is quoted as saying.
Manners or not, Jenson Button described Vettel’s qualifying and race pace until his retirement with a failed alternator in Valencia as “scary”.
McLaren’s Button had been asked about the widespread praise of Fernando Alonso following the Spaniard’s Valencia win, including Lewis Hamilton’s description of the Ferrari driver as “phenomenal”.
“There’s been a lot of arse-kissing going on lately,” Button told British newspapers. “I don’t know what’s happening. It’s quite strange.”
The Briton said Vettel, not Alonso, is the really “scary one”.
“The pace that Sebastian had (in Valencia) was amazing. He was on fire. He had such a massive difference in pace to the rest of the field and we haven’t seen that for a while,” said Button.