Ferrari say case is closed over Sebastian Vettel Brazilian GP flag controversy

Team also insist they didn't attempt to undermine the race result

By James Galloway.   Last Updated: 30/11/12 12:52pm

  • Share:

Sky Bet

    • Retrieving latest Sky Bet odds

Ferrari have confirmed that they consider the Sebastian Vettel flag controversy closed after receiving a written response from the FIA.

The Maranello team announced on Thursday that they had sent a letter to the sport's governing body seeking clarification on what exactly had happened when Vettel passed the Jean-Eric Vergne on lap four of the season-ending Brazilian GP amid suggestions that the German may have overtaken the Toro Rosso under a yellow flag.

However, forensic analysis of onboard footage from Vettel's car, which was broadcast during Sky Sports F1's Race Control coverage of Sunday's GP, ultimately revealed the presence of a marshal waving a green flag before the World Champion completed his move and, with the FIA convinced that there was no case to answer, Ferrari have confirmed they are happy with the governing body's explanation.

For their part, the FIA have also officially noted Ferrari's letter, stating "that as the overtaking manoeuvre was not in breach of the regulations, and therefore there was no infringement to investigate, it was not reported to the Stewards by Race Control" during the title decider.

Had there been a breach of the regulations, Vettel's sixth place, and therefore subsequent slender title victory over Fernando Alonso, would have been put in doubt.

In their official statement released on Friday morning, Ferrari made clear they accepted the FIA's version of events and stressed they had only sought clarification about the legality of the move following intense online speculation.

"The request for a clarification from the FIA, regarding Vettel's passing move on Vergne, came about through the need to shed light on the circumstances of the move, which came out on the Internet only a few days after the race," Ferrari declared in a statement.

"Ferrari duly takes note of the reply sent by the FIA this morning and therefore considers the matter now closed."

The Italian team also maintained they were morally obliged to seek clarification on the matter for the good of F1's image.

"The letter to the FIA was in no way intended to undermine the legality of the race result," the Scuderia statement continued.

"We received tens of thousands of queries relating to this matter from all over the world and it was incumbent on us to take the matter further, asking the Federation to look into an incident that could have cast a shadow over the championship in the eyes of all Formula 1 enthusiasts, not just Ferrari fans."

Red Bull subsequently welcomed the clarification via a statement of their own on the team's official website: "We are pleased, but not surprised, that the FIA has confirmed there is no case to answer regarding the 2012 Brazilian Grand Prix.

"We are extremely proud of Sebastian's incredible achievement and his third historic title, which makes him the youngest ever triple world champion."

The Ferrari statement in full:
'The request for a clarification from the FIA, regarding Vettel's passing move on Vergne, came about through the need to shed light on the circumstances of the move, which came out on the Internet only a few days after the race. The letter to the FIA was in no way intended to undermine the legality of the race result. We received tens of thousands of queries relating to this matter from all over the world and it was incumbent on us to take the matter further, asking the Federation to look into an incident that could have cast a shadow over the championship in the eyes of all Formula 1 enthusiasts, not just Ferrari fans. Ferrari duly takes note of the reply sent by the FIA this morning and therefore considers the matter now closed.'

The FIA statement in full:
'The FIA received a letter from Scuderia Ferrari, seeking clarification on Sebastien Vettel's overtaking manoeuvre in Sao Paulo on Sunday. In the spirit of transparency and goodwill, the FIA wishes to make public the receipt of this letter. The Federation also informs it has replied to Scuderia Ferrari, in the same constructive spirit, stating that as the overtaking manoeuvre was not in breach of the regulations, and therefore there was no infringement to investigate, it was not reported to the Stewards by Race Control.'

  • Share:

Related

Vettel yellow flag controversy

Sebastian Vettel: Was never worried about yellow flag incident

Vettel targets fourth title

Sebastian Vettel says he is as motivated as ever and never doubted his controversial overtaking manoeuvre in Brazil.

Fernando Alonso: Says Ferrari were right to seek clarification

Alonso: Fans deserved answer

Fernando Alonso has echoed his Ferrari bosses in insisting the team "owed our fans an answer" over the flag controversy.

Stefano Domenicali: Said Ferrari wanted "the matter completely cleared up"

Domenicali defends FIA query

Ferrari's team boss has defended their decision to ask for clarification of Sebastian Vettel's controversial overtake.

Related Profiles

Most Popular

Features

No change at Ferrari

No change at Ferrari

Ferrari boss Marco Mattiacci confirms to Sky F1 both Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso will stay for 2015.

Under the skin

Under the skin

Ted Kravitz explains the unique placing of the oil tank on the 2014 Ferrari - and the problems it's causing.

Kimi's future in doubt

Kimi's future in doubt

Finn refuses to identify date when he expects to leave Ferrari as Jules Bianchi waits in the wings.