user icon

Ferrari denies Leclerc undercut was performed to jump Vettel

  • Published on 29 Sep 2019 18:50
  • comments 2
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto has denied that Ferrari's undercut strategy for Charles Leclerc was not done to ensure he overtook Sebastian Vettel.

Vettel took the lead of the race on the opening lap, using Leclerc's slipstream to propel himself into first place after he started from third on the grid.

Ferrari had planned to give Vettel Leclerc's slipstream as it aimed to get Vettel in front of Hamilton and run in a one-two formation.

MORELeclerc defends second pit stop as he feared Verstappen overtake

However, Vettel didn't hand the position back to Leclerc when requested to do so by Ferrari, stating that Lewis Hamilton behind in third place was too close.

Leclerc pitted four laps before Vettel and jumped the German driver, before Vettel retired from the race with an MGU-K problem.

“Looking at the video, looking at the start our judgement [was] that the start went as planned and therefore we thought it was right to ask Seb to swap the positions," said Binotto.

“Eventually, the two drivers may have different opinions by driving the car, but that’s something which we may discuss with them.

“We initially asked Seb to give the position back. But it's fair enough to say that at that stage of the race maybe Charles was not close enough and we would have lost some time on track.

"Later on Seb was quite fast and gained some track advantage on Charles. So we knew that we could have decided to do it later on.”

"The undercut was not for the reason of giving back the position to Charles, Charles stopped because of worn tyres. His left-rear was starting to be worn so that was the right moment for him to pit.

“We knew as well that if we would have stopped both our cars we would have been vulnerable on safety cars by leaving the lead to Hamilton. So we tried to stay out as much as we could with Seb simply to protect in case of Safety Cars in that period of the race.

"Seb’s tyres were worn, he called for it, it was the right moment to pit. He pitted and as a matter of fact Charles was ahead, Seb was behind but the race was still not over and there would have been plenty of opportunity to decide what could have been the best option later on.”

Replies (2)

Login to reply
  • f1ski

    Posts: 726

    BS . There is nothing wrong IMO to favor leclerc at this point. He is ahead in points so maximize his results. Stop controlling the public narrative

    • + 0
    • Sep 30 2019 - 01:04
  • Deny it all you want, it was pretty obvious what it was meant to do. As I've said before, you can dress a horse in a wedding gown and wed it as much as you please, but both you and the horse know that you are bedding a horse. Do I mind? Not necessarily. I found it strategically sound to try and cover off Hammy, and I think Leclerc could've done well in the clean air once the Mercs where outta the way.

    • + 0
    • Sep 30 2019 - 10:53

BE Grand Prix of Belgium

Local time 

BE Grand Prix of Belgium

Local time 

Related news

World Championship standings 2021

Show full world champion standings

Test calendar

Bahrain International Circuit - Winter testing

See full test schedule

Give your opinion!

Will Bottas challenge Hamilton for the world championship in 2020?

Driver profile

  • Country Germany
  • Date of b. Jul 3 1987 (33)
  • Place of b. Heppenheim, Germany
  • Weight 62 kg
  • Length 1.75 m
Show full profile

Team profile

Show full profile

Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
Grand Prix
Circuit
-
Bahrain
26 - Mar 28
Bahrain
16 - Apr 18
Italy
7 - May 9
Spain
21 - May 23
Monaco
4 - Jun 6
Azerbaijan
11 - Jun 13
Canada
25 - Jun 27
France
2 - Jul 4
Austria
16 - Jul 18
United Kingdom
30 - Aug 1
Hungary
27 - Aug 29
Belgium
3 - Sep 5
Netherlands
10 - Sep 12
Italy
24 - Sep 26
Russian
1 - Oct 3
Singapore
8 - Oct 10
Japan
22 - Oct 24
United States of America
29 - Oct 31
Mexico
5 - Nov 7
Brazil
19 - Nov 21
Australia
3 - Dec 5
Saudi Arabia
10 - Dec 12
United Arab Emirates
See full schedule

Formula 1 Calendar - 2021

Date
Grand Prix & Circuit
26 - Mar 28
16 - Apr 18
7 - May 9
21 - May 23
Monaco Monte Carlo
4 - Jun 6
Azerbaijan Baku City Circuit
11 - Jun 13
25 - Jun 27
France Paul Ricard
2 - Jul 4
Austria Red Bull Ring
16 - Jul 18
United Kingdom Silverstone
30 - Aug 1
Hungary Hungaroring
27 - Aug 29
3 - Sep 5
Netherlands Circuit Zandvoort
10 - Sep 12
Italy Monza
24 - Sep 26
Russian Sochi Autodrom
1 - Oct 3
8 - Oct 10
22 - Oct 24
United States of America Circuit of the Americas
29 - Oct 31
5 - Nov 7
Brazil Interlagos
19 - Nov 21
Australia Albert Park
3 - Dec 5
Saudi Arabia Jeddah Street Circuit
10 - Dec 12
United Arab Emirates Yas Marina Circuit
See full schedule
show sidebar