Sebastian Vettel apologized to Max Verstappen for their collision in the British Grand Prix and accepted full responsibility after being penalized by the stewards.
Verstappen had overtaken Vettel around the outside of Stowe to take third place with 15 laps remaining, but the Ferrari attempted to fight back into Club and ran into the back of the Red Bull as Verstappen defended the inside line. Both drivers ended up in the gravel, with Verstappen recovering to finish fifth but Vettel limping back to the pits for a new front wing and being classified in 16th after receiving a ten-second time penalty.
“Well, it was my mistake,” Vettel said. “He passed me into Stowe and he ran a bit wide which gave me the chance to come back. Then I thought, it looked for a second that he was going to the right and there would be a gap on the left which I was hoping to go in for. But it didn’t open and by that time it was already too late and I was too close and I crashed.”
Vettel immediately approached Verstappen to apologize as soon as the pair reached parc ferme, and says the time penalty and two penalty points were deserved.
“(The penalty) was fine, it was my mistake, so… Obviously he’s not happy, but life goes on.
“Obviously I destroyed my race. But the race in general was pretty good. I think we were quite sharp with the calls to stay out in the beginning, I think we managed the tires well, so despite the negative result there were also some positives.”
Expanding on the overall race performance, Vettel believes it would have been tough to beat Verstappen even if the pair had not collided.
“Today was really good, I was really happy. There were some important moments in the beginning of the race and then we benefited from the Safety Car to pass the three cars in front. But I think it was quite tight between us and Red Bull and I think Max was a bit quicker than us today in the first stint and also in the end of the race. Probably we should have finished fourth but we didn’t… I didn’t, so I can’t be happy with that.”
Vettel also received two penalty points for the incident with Verstappen, leaving him with six for the 12-month period.