Dr Helmut Marko has confirmed Red Bull’s suspicion that the safety car was called onto the Valencia circuit on Sunday to aid ‘the show’.
After retiring from a comfortable lead with a broken Red Bull on Sunday, an angry Sebastian Vettel said he thought the safety car period was called not just to clear debris but also “to break our neck”. Indeed, the neutralisation of the race allowed Romain Grosjean to catch up and thereby breathed life into the contest, and it also may have contributed to Vettel’s terminal car problem.
“It just went to sh**,” Vettel shrugged. “I think it was clear to see that (until then) we were pulling away without problems.”
Red Bull’s motor sport consultant Marko backed Vettel’s theory.
“Vettel was too far ahead and so the field was brought back together,” the Austrian is quoted as saying on German television, “just as they do in American racing.”
German Sky television pundit Marc Surer, however, doubted Red Bull’s conspiracy theory is true.
“I don’t think it was intentional against Vettel,” said the Swiss, insisting it was right to give marshals the cover of the safety car to clear the track of crash debris. “But I am sure it is going to be discussed,” he added.
Surer also played down the new controversy about the legality of the RB8’s latest developments; namely the ‘double floor’ that was credited for Vettel’s pole gap and winning pace in Spain.
“It is being discussed,” said Surer, “but I remember that Toro Rosso had a false floor like this and no one said anything.”