Former three-time World Champion Niki Lauda believes Red Bull must throw all their support behind Webber if they want to walk away with the World Driver’s Championship this year. “Red Bull needs to establish the team hierarchy now. If they don’t get behind Mark Webber, they may have to go without the title,â€ said the Austrian to the Daily Telegraph.
Niki Lauda’s only concern is that the spectators do not feel cheated by such an occurrence. Lauda was disgusted with Ferrari for their use of team orders at the German Grand Prix, and publicly slammed the Italian outfit, via the media because of this.
Jos Verstappen, a Dutch driver who supported Schumacher on his way to the 1994 World Driver’s Championship, also shares a similar viewpoint to Lauda. “Purely mathematically, [Vettel] has a chance to be champion,â€ he said. “But as a team they really have to put everything behind Webber. He has a better chance of winning the title.â€
Verstappen’s observation is that Red Bull would prefer Vettel to win over Webber when he stated, “Of course it’s a difficult position for Red Bull, as the whole world knows who they would prefer to be in the best position. It’s unfortunate for Vettel, but with his engine failure in Korea his championship did literally go up in smoke.â€
After the Korean Grand Prix, Gerhard Berger, another Austrian and former Formula One Driver insists that Red Bull’s moral is different. “Some of the teams, like Williams or McLaren, operate as a business. In this way it makes sense for them to have a team strategy in order to maximise their championship position,â€ he told Austrian television Servus TV.
“But Red Bull has a different approach using Formula One as a sporting platform to boost its product. And from the sporting approach, the best man wins.â€
He continues, citing his apparent close relationship with the Red Bull team owner Austrian billionaire Dietrich Mateschitz. “Forget grey areas we’re thinking of morality.
“If I know Dietrich Mateschitz, there is no question about the approach. And I think the fans will be grateful; it’s sport. It’s not sport however if all year you’re just making tactical moves.â€
The man himself Mateschitz whom many people believe would prefer Vettel winning the World Championship over, went on record before the Korean Grand Prix to state this was not the case. “There will be no team order from our side. The driver who makes the least mistakes and is faster should, or will, win,â€ he said. “If we win the drivers’ title we would be happy for both in the same way because each one would deserve it.â€
Vettel boasts awesome speed he has been on pole position an astonishing 9 times, compared to Webber’s 4. However, Vettel has only won three Grand Prix’s this season partly due to his own hot-headedness, such as in Turkey and Belgium. At the Hungarian Grand Prix he looked set to win, but made a mistake behind the safety car. His engine has failed twice while he was in the lead, at Bahrain and Korea. It is unfortunately a combination of rotten luck and inexperience. But one could argue that he clearly should have the championship wrapped up by now. Almost every race he has looked set to win, but yet he finds himself in the position where now sits fourth in the championship.
Webber, has won 4 races, and when he’s not winning he lurks either on the podium or just off it. In fact, his accident at Korea was arguably his first mistake of the season. But his poor starts, slight lack of pace, and generally conservative approach would beg one to ask is he a reliable option to win the championship?
This is all to be decided upon by the man in the hot seat, Team Principal Christian Horner. Rumours have it his job is on the lineâ€¦