Sebastian Vettel’s bosses did not rally around the German after he pointed an angry finger at rival Daniil Kvyat in China.
Vettel was furious that Red Bull youngster Kvyat’s first-corner charge had resulted in him needing to jink the Ferrari left and crash into the sister red car of Kimi Raikkonen.
Vettel apologised to the team on the radio and to Raikkonen in person, but publicly fumed at Russian Kvyat just before walking onto the podium.
Ferrari team boss Maurizio Arrivabene, however, did not like the pointing of fingers.
“We should not point the finger at others,” he is quoted by Bild newspaper. “This is racing, not Monopoly. But if your two drivers crash into one another, that’s never good.
“Kvyat came into the corner at high speed,” Arrivabene is also quoted by the Italian media, “but Seb and Kimi would have done the same in his position.”
Vettel’s reaction to the incident might be explained by the rare presence in the garage of the imposing and demanding Ferrari president, Sergio Marchionne.
Arrivabene admitted: “He (Marchionne) knows what racing is, and was not pleased, as I am not. I think yes, in normal circumstances we would have had a very, very good chance of winning.”
Indeed, president Marchionne confirmed: “Two Ferrari drivers colliding is not very Ferrari (like), but I’m more embarrassed for them than for me, if I’m honest.
“That he (Vettel) apologised, I would have done so too, getting in this situation with someone much more experienced than him, but the good thing was that the comeback was a masterpiece, so I’m happy about that.”
However, Marchionne had demanded before the season began that Ferrari must return to winning races immediately in 2016, and so far that objective has been missed.
“I see a Ferrari that is growing, and I like that,” the Italian-Canadian said in China. “It is like a child that is growing up but is now and then a little petulant.
“But the car is there and we have to go on like this.”