Vettel: Contact with Stroll likely 'a misunderstanding'


Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll came perilously close to taking each other out in the final laps of Sunday's Russian Grand Prix following a misunderstanding between the Aston Martin teammates.

The two drivers were running just inside the top ten when a bout of rain hit the track and made conditions suddenly tricky.

Vettel caught up with the Canadian on the run into Turn 11 and attempted to overtake his teammate on the outside only for Stroll to move to the left and directly into Vettel's path.

The German was sandwiched between Stroll's car and the wall. A contact ensued but fortunately with no terminal consequences although both drivers finished outside of the points.


"I guess it was a misunderstanding," Vettel commented after the race. "Not sure, I don’t think he saw me, he probably didn’t expect me either but, fortunately nothing happened.

"Unfortunately, we’re both out of the points in the end".

Stroll later confirmed that he had been distracted by the worsening track conditions.

"It became very slippery out there and I did not see Sebastian alongside me," admitted the Canadian.

Ahead of the late rain and disruption, Vettel looked set for a points haul. But his and his team's decision to press on rather than pit immediately for a set of inters was - just like was the case for race leader Lando Norris - the wrong call.

"It felt like a 50/50 call as to whether we should pit for Intermediate tyres,"he said.

"It felt like the rain would stay light, so we stayed out, but then it became much heavier and caught us out. So we had to pit in the end and fit Intermediates, which dropped us down the order.

"When you have rain late in the race it can give you a big opportunity, but it did not go our way today."

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