Sebastian Vettel has voiced his issues with the FIA as the fall-out from Sunday’s dramatic Abu Dhabi Grand Prix continues.
Sebastian Vettel has asked for more consistency from the FIA following the controversial finale to the 2021 F1 season. The German legend finished back in 11th place in Sunday’s Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as the late drama unfolded in front of him, with Max Verstappen overtaking Lewis Hamilton on the final lap to be crowned world champion.
It meant a first drivers’ title for Red Bull since Vettel himself prevailed in the 2013 campaign, the last of his four successive championship wins, but their triumph has been overshadowed by the fall-out from the way race director Michael Masi deployed the safety car late in the race.
Masi himself has faced calls to resign from angry F1 fans who feel he ‘manufactured’ events in order to benefit the spectacle, and after having two protests dismissed on Sunday, Mercedes are currently considering whether to exorcise their right to appeal.
The issue of rules in F1 has raged all season long however, and Verstappen and Hamilton have not been the only drivers seemingly plagued by inconsistency.
Vettel himself was given a three place grid penalty in Austria for ‘blocking’ Fernando Alonso in qualifying, whilst in Abu Dhabi Daniel Ricciardo escaped sanction for what seemed an almost identical offence.
And now the 34-year-old has spoken out on the issues he thinks are plaguing the sport – but also emphasised he didn’t think problems have necessarily escalated in recent times.
“Ideally, we’d like more consistency, but there’s also a human side. It’s probably difficult to get it 100% right,” he said.
“But I don’t think it has been any better or any worse than the past, with the exception of the fines for reprimands, in terms of cash. That’s just unnecessary.
“I think it looks stupid to ask for 10,000, 25,000, 50,000 (euros)… I would like to see the receipt for what happens with the money!”
It wasn’t money at the forefront of the Aston Martin driver’s mind at the Yas Marina circuit though, but he did start the race targeting a unique bit of silverware.
This season has seen the introduction of the brand-new Crypto.com Overtake Award, created to reward the individual driver who makes the most overtakes throughout the campaign.
Vettel arrived in Abu Dhabi leading the race on 127, just two clear of Alonso, and he duly pressed home his advantage with a further five overtakes during the season finale.
The Spaniard could only manage three, meaning Vettel took the honour with a score of 132-128.
The departing Kimi Raikkonen was third with 127.
Vettel will return with Aston Martin for the 2022 campaign, but is yet to indicate whether he plans to race beyond that when his contract expires.