Ecclestone backs Vettel over Sepang row
27 March 2013 – Bernie Ecclestone has leapt to the defence of Sebastian Vettel following the reigning World Champion’s decision to disobey team orders and overtake fellow Red Bull driver Mark Webber for victory at last weekend's Malaysian Grand Prix.
Despite calls to hold position in the final stages of the race, Vettel pushed the instructions aside to take the win away from Webber and was heavily criticised as a result. However, Ecclestone has spoken out and backed the German’s actions.
"If I was Sebastian Vettel, having won three World Championships for the team, and somebody came on the radio to me and started giving me instructions I'd probably do exactly the same as Kimi Räikkönen did when he came back and they gave him some instructions," Ecclestone explained to Sky Sports. "I'd say 'I know what I'm doing'."
Having brushed off claims that Vettel undermined team boss Christian Horner’s authority, Ecclestone said the 25-year-old was simply showing his ruthlessness.
"What you have to do is think very carefully," he commented. "I always say, show me a good loser and I'll show you a loser. Sebastian is not a loser. Sebastian is a winner."
Ecclestone added that disciplinary action would be an unwise route for Red Bull to take, with sanctions such as a race ban too costly for the team’s title ambitions.
"I don't think I'd give that any consideration to be honest," he said. "I'd say to Sebastian, 'in future don't make me look an idiot.' But they don't care who wins. They want to win the championship. For them what difference does it make?"