GPl Archives 3 April 2013 Issue #65 - Page 20

Elsewhere, the team orders fiasco triggered by events in Malaysia rolls on. Bernie Ecclestone has chimed in, saying that if he was a reigning triple world champion like Vettel, he also would have ignored the order. “I’d probably do exactly the same as Kimi Raikkonen did when he came back and they gave him some instructions. I’d say ‘I know what I’m doing’,” said the Formula 1 chief executive. Peter Mucke, a former mentor of the once rising Formula BMW driver Vettel, agrees: “A driver who wants to win the world championship must be uncompromising. “Racers are selfish and will be so even in a team sport,” he told Der Tagesspiegel newspaper. The saga has even spilled into an argument between Christian Horner and Flavio Briatore, after the controversial former Renault boss accused Horner of losing control of Red Bull and being “weak”. Briatore had told Italian radio RAI: “Christian didn’t even have the strength to get on the podium because they’re terrified with a driver in charge instead of the team manager.” Red Bull hit back in a statement: “A weak team principal would be unable to steer a team to three consecutive world championships and oversee and manage the extensive teamwork that goes into this achievement — while managing two talented racers.” At the same time, Briatore backed away from the controversy, insisting his comments were misinterpreted because he has “a lot of respect” for Horner. “As a team principal, I think Chris has done an excellent job not only for Red Bull, but for Formula 1 in general, and he is still undoubtedly doing so,” he said.