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Sebastian Vettel made a mistake in beating Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber but it is now time to move on

At Jerez in 1997 I was given an instruction which had not been discussed before the race, to make way for Mika Hakkinen, then my team-mate at McLaren.

I discussed it on the radio for several laps, until I was told that if I did not move over, I would be compromising my position within the team. So I pulled over, because I felt that I had lobbied as hard as I can.

Mark Webber is facing a similar situation. He has willingly signed on each year with Red Bull, and this is not the first time that a dispute with Sebastian Vettel has raised its head. Helmut Marko [Red Bull’s motorsport adviser] has clearly made comments about Mark and Mark has responded, but everybody keeps coming back for more.

It is the blunt fact of the matter. It was the same for me. If I did not think McLaren were giving me an equal car, then I would not have stayed. But I knew that I had to find the speed and the strength of character to win with it. That is clearly what Mark’s view is, too.

I felt that at McLaren, Ron Dennis had a closer bond with Mika, psychologically, because Mika had almost died in one of his cars at Adelaide in 1995. I never once felt that I had less than equal equipment. Unfortunately for me, I was never quite as quick or as consistent in qualifying, so I was always on the back foot anyway, but every year, when I looked at the options for where I wanted to go and race, I would say McLaren, because it represented the best chance for me to have a winning car.

Sebastian has let the Red Bull team and himself down. But I guarantee that almost any sportsman has made a mistake that required an apology at some stage. We all have. We apologise, and we move on.

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