Mexican Grand Prix – Ferrari team boss Maurizio Arrivabene says that any criticism leveled at Sebastian Vettel isn’t coming from within the team.
Speaking at the Team Personnel Press Conference at the United States Grand Prix last weekend, Arrivabene acknowledged that there has been criticism of Sebastian Vettel’s performances this year, as he endures a nightmare second half of the season that has seen the four time Champion make numerous mistakes. With Italian media critical of him, there have been unsubstantiated rumours of unrest within the team, particularly as stalwart Kimi Raikkonen is set to be replaced by promising rookie Charles Leclerc.
However, Arrivabene was quick to put the record straight: “You mention criticism. For sure the criticism to Sebastian they are not coming from the team, because I have said many, many times, we are winning and losing together.”
“It’s not new news, but I would like reiterate that we win and we lose together – end.”
Speaking on Thursday, Lewis Hamilton defended his title rival and said that his mistakes are being magnified by the media: “As drivers we are all members of the GPDA and I think we all just need to stick together and I think the respect that we have for one another I think is probably the greatest that it’s been for many years. At least in the years that I’ve been in Formula One.
“I think ultimately as a four-time World Champion, it is the most intense year that we’ve had. So every hiccup is magnified, naturally, as it is perhaps in any sport at the top. But there have been many – or several – times that I’ve been in the firing range and Seb’s always been really respectful and supported me, so I thought it was only just to do the same.”
Arrivabene was asked about Lewis’ comments, and the Ferrari boss said: “My opinion is that Lewis and Sebastian started in 2007 together, they are professional drivers and colleagues. I don’t want to get into the conversation in between the two drivers. It’s normal that being a Formula 1 professional that they are supporting each other, despite what they do at the track. In the track they fight like hell and out of the track they are colleagues and they are supporting each other.”