Red Bull team boss Christian Horner has backed Sebastian Vettel, amid suggestions that the reigning Formula 1 World Champion could be losing the support of the team with whom he won four consecutive world titles.
Horner has, dismissed the criticism, and has tipped Vettel to bounce back, essentially blaming the bulk of the 26-year-old’s struggles on “bad luck”.
“Sebastian has had an incredible amount of bad luck this year,” Horner told the Austrian broadcaster Servus TV. “Three times he’s failed to finish but he’s had many more technical problems than that.”
Despite Vettel’s struggle simply for a functioning car, Horner says that the German is dealing with the situation incredibly well, “Many other drivers would have their heads down, their motivation would be gone. Not him.”
“He works harder and pushes the team even more. When the tide turns, the results will come back,” added Horner.
According to Formula 1 legend Niki Lauda, however, a major element to the Red Bull situation in 2014 has been Daniel Ricciardo, who surprised the entire paddock with his rapid rise to be regarded amongst the very best drivers in Formula 1 today.
“He is a massive talent that has reached a very high level in a very short period . . .,” said the triple world champion, who is Red Bull rival Mercedes ‘team chairman.
“He has everything it takes to be a world champion in the future,” added Lauda.
But typically outspoken 1997 world champion Jacques Villeneuve this week is fueling conspiracy theories by claiming, amid Vettel’s struggle to keep up with new teammate Daniel Ricciardo this year, “Red Bull is treating him like they treated Mark Webber”.
“Now they want to ‘kill’ Sebastian because he’s not right for the Red Bull image,” said the French Canadian, amid reports that McLaren have made an early approach to Vettel. (GMM)