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Minardi questions legality of Vettel's RB9
Saturday 28th September 2013, 16:18 by TF1T Staff
© Red Bull Racing, Getty Images
Former Formula 1 team-owner Giancarlo Minardi has questioned why Sebastian Vettel was so dominant in Singapore and just how he managed to outpace team-mate Mark Webber in a supposedly identical car.
The German, who won the race with ease, was often two seconds faster than any other car during the race - not on just a few laps, but consistently.
Minardi, who was present at the race, described what he witnessed and made a comment relating to traction control which will surely fire up the conspiracy theorists.
"From my suite, I chose some mainstays as a reference point in order to monitor and compare the drivers' way of driving," he said. "I was impressed by Vettel's neat way of driving on that stretch of the track. He was able to drive all that stretch without making any corrections, unlike all his rivals (also his team-mate).
"On the same stretch, Sebastian was able to [accelerate] 50 metres before any other driver, Webber included. The thing that surprised me the most was the engine's output sound. Besides speeding up 50m before any other driver, the Renault engine of the German's car grinded like no other French engines on track, neither like Mark's.
"That sound was similar to the sound made by the engine when the traction control system got into action in the past seasons," he added.
The 66-year-old can understand a small advantage, but says answers are needed as to how the three-time champion could pull away from his rivals by such a large amount each and every lap.
"It's not my intention to devalue Sebastian Vettel, who always manages his Red Bull the best way and I don't want even to jab at anyone, I just want to tell what I personally saw and heard during that three-day-event.
"According to my experience, I think that a 2.5 second advantage each lap is really too much. It's like a three-generation development gap, it's a huge gap.
"There are some aspects, Vettel's very neat way of driving, Vettel's speed-up 50m before the other drivers, the abnormal sound of the Renault engine and Vettel's more than 2 second advantage over his rivals that make me think and I would like to have some answers."
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