Vettel escapes while FIA moves on Schumacher, Webber

Mon, 24 September 2012, 09:35

Sep.24 (GMM) Sebastian Vettel clung onto Singapore victory despite a stewards enquiry late on Sunday night.

After the Red Bull driver beat McLaren’s Jenson Button to the chequered flag, FIA officials looked into whether he ‘brake tested’ his British rival whilst behind the safety car.

“It was not intentional,” the German insisted.

“You try to warm up your tyres and also try to keep the brakes at the right temperature. So it was possible that he (Button) was looking at his steering wheel and I was braking a bit abruptly and then you almost meet at a spot where you both would not want to be.

“Thank goodness nothing happened,” added Vettel.

Button also admitted that the new championship standings runner-up did not ‘brake test’ him.

“I don’t think it was a brake test,” said Button, “because Sebastian is not a stupid driver, he knows if he brake tests me we are going to crash.

“I was not trying to get him penalised, I was just looking for clarification of where we are.”

But after another stewards investigation late on Sunday, the FIA will push Michael Schumacher ten places down the Suzuka grid early next month.

Also because the 43-year-old German was involved in a similar rear-ending crash with Bruno Senna earlier this season in Barcelona, Schumacher’s punishment is for smashing Jean-Eric Vergne out of the race.

“I have to accept that,” German reports quote Schumacher as saying, despite earlier hinting at a possible technical problem.

Toro Rosso’s Vergne told RMC Sport: “He (Schumacher) told me he was sorry and that it was his fault.”

The Kolner Express tabloid newspaper wondered: “What was that, Schumi? Nodding off in the night?”

And Mark Webber was stripped of his championship point, for leaving the track during his pass on Sauber’s Kamui Kobayashi.

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