Monaco Grand Prix race winner Sebastian Vettel has denied that Ferrari’s race strategy was part of a pre-arranged plan to switch its cars around to benefit his Formula 1 title hopes.
Vettel jumped ahead of polesitter and race leader Kimi Raikkonen by staying out five laps longer during the only pitstop phase of the race, prompting suggestions that it was a predetermined strategy to swap the cars around.
When asked if the strategy was a result of team orders, which are not illegal in F1, Vettel said: “Not really, there was no plan on team orders.
“We spoke about the race before and it was clear – the lead normally gets priority, and if I had the choice to go first, that is normally what you want to do.
“This is one of those rare times where the ‘overcut’ [stopping after a rival] is positive.
“The rule of thumb, if you qualify ahead you get priority at the first stop. Today it worked out in my favour and I take it.”
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