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Colles: Vettel problems started years ago

Former Formula One team leader Colin Kolles believes that the problems between Sebastian Vettel and Ferrari, which are quite obvious 2020, started a few years ago”. To this analysis came the former boss of Force India, HRT and Caterham on Sunday evening in the TV program of the Spartan television channel “Sport1”.

“The misunderstandings accumulate. I think the trust between team and Sebastian is gone. This is the main problem from my point of view,”says Kolles. This has already started, “when he was able to win the World Championship, and even then he did not get the hundred percent support of the team.”

“These were the first scratches in the relationship. Then he started making mistakes because he had to take too much risk. From my point of view, a team that goes around the World Cup must have a number one driver and bet on it. And it should have been Sebastian Vettel two years ago.”

“If there had not been this accident in Singapore [2017], then there would not have been the accident in Hockenheim [2018] where he made unnecessary mistakes. Because he doesn’t get the support of the team, he makes mistakes. In my view, this is the main problem with the story,”says Kolles.

Ferrari: What tensions, please?

Since Ferrari, sports director Laurent Mekies and then team leader Mattia Binotto, in a big interview in the’Image on Sunday’, assures that Scuderia will do everything, to bring the season with Vettel to a positive conclusion. The atmosphere in the team was positive, it is said officially.

Alone: There is little to see in the TV broadcasts. On Saturday, Vettel did not speak to his racing engineer Riccardo Adami during the entire qualifying period. And when he inquired on Sunday whether to push with the soft ones or to spare the tires, he did not get an answer for a long time.

When Adami then asked if he could imagine going through with the tire set to the end, Vettel of the collars burst: “Oh man, that’s what I asked earlier! Now I have pushed three laps.”Until he then agreed:”We have nothing to lose anyway.”And the race with place seven brought to a semi-conciliatory end.

This lack of trust between driver and team is, according to Kolles,”a vicious circle. That is the problem. Racers are very sensitive creatures. They feel if they do not get the full support from the team.”

It is a”big mistake of Ferrari that they have no number-1 status and no number 2. At least not clear and clear. They said [2019] to the outside that Sebastian Vettel is their number one driver, but they did not practice it. Or were unable to do so with the second driver Leclerc.”

Vettel: The first formula-3 test was at Kolles

“I know Sebastian. For the first time he drove Formula 3 with me, a long, long time ago,”recalls Kolles. This was 2004, when Vettel was still driving Formula BMW and completed his first Formula Three test in the Kolles team. Captured by Gerhard Noack, carried out in Oschersleben.

Kolles explains: “Most drivers who drive at such a level are very sensitive. They need nest heat. They need the team’s trust. They need to feel that the team believes in them. This is very, very important. This is actually the case in every sport.”

“Racing is a lot of business. This is about tens of thousands of customers, or hundreds of thousands, and at the end of the day it plays a massive role: do I have confidence in the team, in the car? That could be half a second or maybe more. And that is missing at the moment.”

Also because Ferrari told him”much too early”that he will not drive 2021 in red anymore:”This is completely destroyed this season. But, as I said, the problem has been going on for years,”the German argues,”and is very specifically critical of Binotto: “It is the task of the team leader to have this und er control.”

“The problem is how he was dumped. Well, it does matter sometimes. There were various statements, of course. One of them put it in the press that Sebastian is playing poker with his salary and still wants a lot of money and it’s all about the money. This did not happen.”

When is a decision”common”?

Binotto maintains t hat the separation was a joint decision:”If a decision is announced together, it is also a joint decision for me. Whether both parties are happy with the decision is on a different page.”

A statement that shoots Kolle’s head. The argument put forward weeks ago by Ferrari that one has to save because of the Corona crisis and therefore cannot meet Vettel’s salary expectations is an”excuse”. And it becomes even clearer when he says that Ferrari’s explanations of the Vettel separation are “nonsense” and “very thin”.

What Vettel, in the opinion of the 52-year-old himself, must accuse himself of, that he may not have handled the politics behind the scenes of Ferrari with too little cold-blooded “over the last two years one has to say that it would have helped him if he had someone at his side.”

“One day he decided that he did not need a manager, That he does it himself, with lawyers. This is his right, he must decide,”says Kolles.”It is his right. One has to understand that formula 1 is very political. Very, very political. Motorsport as a whole is very political, but formula 1 is extremely political.”

Therefore, a manager Vettel might have helped:”In the case where a supposed second driver Leclerc joined the team, with a management named Nicolas Todt, the son of FIA President Jean Todt, former team leader of Ferrari, the story looks a little different…”