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United States Grand Prix 2022

Vettel had to try 'unusual' tactics in US Grand Prix recovery

Sebastian Vettel was forced to get creative after a botched pitstop in the United States Grand Prix cost him a better result.

Vettel USA
Article
To news overview © XPBimages

Sebastian Vettel was forced to try "unusual" tactics in his recovery drive in the United States Grand Prix after his Aston Martin Formula 1 team botched a pitstop.

Vettel - in his final US Grand Prix - briefly led the race on Laps 40 and 41 to take him past 3,500 laps led in his career, before diving for the pits for a planned second stop on a surprisingly strong weekend for Aston.

However, it turned out to be a 16.8 second stop as the front-left did not go on properly, dropping Vettel down to P13 - albeit on much fresher tyres than those ahead.

The 2013 Austin winner then embarked on a comeback drive - scything through the field back into the points.

On the penultimate turn of the final lap, he dived up the inside of Kevin Magnussen's Haas to secure eighth place - which became seventh hours later following Fernando Alonso's post-race penalty.

Despite the setback, Vettel enjoyed the race as he scored a top eight result for the third straight Grand Prix following eighth and sixth in Singapore and Japan.

Vettel on comeback drive

"I enjoyed it a lot. Obviously, you're racing for eighth and not for first, second or third," the four-time World Champion explained to media including RacingNews365.com.

"Unfortunately, we didn't have the pace down the straights to just pass [other drivers] comfortably, so I had to try something unusual, either on the brakes or in unusual spots.

"I did and it worked most of the time.

"I definitely had some fun and I had tight battles especially with Kevin at the end on the last lap.

"It was a bit of a climax as he's one of the most difficult drivers to overtake in the entire field, but he left just enough room. It was good fun for both of us."

The problem in Magnussen overtake

Despite enjoying the Magnussen overtake, Vettel admitted there was a slight problem with visibility while making the move - and that he would miss such moments when he retires at the end of the season.

"I mean it's on the limit and the problem is the other car doesn't really see you at that point," he said.

"So it's a bit of a surprise and with Kevin I thought I'm not sure whether he sees me and pushes me right to the edge [of the track] but he just left enough room.

"It gets bumpy and dirty as well out there, and I had a big moment of snap (oversteer) and locked up all four wheels, especially over the bump heading into Turn 19 which I wasn't sure I was going to make, but I made it.

"Very much on the limit - but good fun.

"I obviously will miss these moments. That's not a secret.

"But I did think long and hard making the decision [to retire] and I also thought about these moments that I will miss the adrenaline.

"Obviously part of me will miss those a lot but another other part of me is looking forward to what's coming in the future."

			© RN365/Michael Potts
	© RN365/Michael Potts

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