Lewis Hamilton has come forward to defend his title rival Sebastian Vettel, as the Ferrari has been taking criticism for errors throughout the season.
Out of the two championship protagonists, it has been Vettel who has been the one making consistent errors. Some were relatively minor, such as losing places at the restart from the Safety Car in Baku, but others have had more catastrophic effects. Hitting Valtteri Bottas at Turn 1 in France was followed by sliding off while leading in Germany, while an early race tangle with Hamilton at Monza completely derailed Vettel’s title charge. Qualifying errors and a clash with Red Bull’s Max Verstappen cost the Ferrari man a further 17 points to Hamilton in the weekend at Suzuka.
Understandably, Vettel has been taking heat for the errors. While the Ferrari doesn’t appear to be the match of the Mercedes any more, the constant errors have riled up fans and the media, with Italian media in particular saying Vettel is not up to the task of taking on Hamilton and leading Ferrari back to championships.
Lewis Hamilton has come forward to defend his rival, in a post on his Instagram. The pair are known to get along off track, and Hamilton said that he felt “the media needs to show a little more respect for Sebastian.”
“You simply cannot imagine how hard it is to do what we do at our level, for any athlete at the top of their game that is. It is to be expected that being humans we will make mistakes but it is how we get through them that counts.”
Vettel, externally at least, seems to shake off the errors he has made, and says that the team spirit is unbroken despite their tough second half to the year.