Ferrari drivers Vettel and Raikkonen and Red Bull’s Verstappen were all forced to retired from the race after a terrible coming together at the first corner.
Stewards summoned all three drivers after the race but decided none was wholly or predominantly to blame, but that’s not how Ferrari saw it:
Tweeting shortly after the incident, they placed the blame squarely on Verstappen’s shoulders:
— Scuderia Ferrari (@ScuderiaFerrari) September 17, 2017
Webber’s reply was even more blunt than that. And cheap, too. The Australian needed just 52 characters — plus two emojis — of the 140 afforded by Twitter to get his point across.
Said the press bloke that's never driven a Go-Kart..🤔🥊 https://t.co/6usw4YEk49
— Mark Webber (@AussieGrit) September 17, 2017
“There’s absolutely no way that Sebastian knew Kimi made such a fantastic start, so he’s now focusing on Max,” Channel 4 pundit Webber said during the broadcaster’s analysis of the race.
“Kimi’s made the best start out of all of them and then there’s an absolutely shocking timing of events where they’ve just run into each other.
“Max Verstappen, totally innocent, absolutely innocent. Seb did try to protect heavily to the left. Kimi got the biggest penalty ever for a great start. It just destroyed the race.”
Watching the incident unfold on a TV in front of him, he said: “Yeah, [this one is] different speeds, we were obviously going at 310 km/h…
“I think sometimes Seb forgets that where the back of his helmet is is not where the back of his car is! There’s a bit more he’s got to get through. There it is… straight across. And look there, again, who’s behind us! Lewis is watching it all unfold again.”
Webber was angry the drivers even needed to give an account of themselves after the race.
“It’s a joke. It’s done. Seb’s leaving here in pieces. Ferrari’s got no points. Max’s has got no points. All of them have been wiped out.
“I just get frustrated is because we’ve had a car race, we’ve left the track, these boys are in the barriers, they’re massively frustrated — they’re burning inside, these boys. Then they’ve got to sit and listen to some guy say ‘well, you know, I’ve got a slo-mo, we’ve gotta do this, we’ve gotta do this’, it’s not real.”
Damon Hill, the 1996 world champion, was disappointed to see Vettel “pretty much blow his and Ferrari’s championships into smithereens.”
“Nice one Seb. You’re better than that. Need to watch that short fuse,” the Briton asked in a blog post.