Horner backs Vettel after Button crash

Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has defended his driver Sebastian Vettel after the German had a torrid race on Sunday in the Belgian Grand Prix.

Quite apart from Vettel’s eventually finishing 15th, he was also involved in a number of incidents, in particular when he crashed into Jenson Button under braking for the Bus Stop chicane.

Vettel has come under fire from many quarters as a result, but Horner said he had faith in his star driver.

“I think Sebastian, without a shadow of a doubt, is a very, very talented driver,” Horner is quoted as saying by Autosport after the Belgian GP. “Here was one of those races where it just did not go his way. He needs to stay calm and focused and eventually it will come his way.

“It was difficult for him. You have to make split second decisions and I think he made one mistake when he was racing Jenson.”

Horner went on to echo what he had told the BBC immediately after the race – namely that Button braked earlier than he should have and caught the following Red Bull man unawares.

“Jenson, braking where he did, just took him completely by surprise. In trying to avoid him he got himself into a spin that ultimately collected Jenson in very, very difficult conditions. He is a great racing driver, he is still a very young guy and it is easy to be very critical on somebody who is relatively inexperienced but for sure he will learn a lot from what happened.”

Vettel’s mistakes at the weekend will not have endeared him to the team hierarchy at a time of the season where they may be considering favouring one driver over another for championship reasons.