Sebastian Vettel plans to tell Ferrari team-mate Charles Leclerc that he should not beat himself up over missing out on “irrelevant” Formula 1 results like at the Turkish Grand Prix.
Leclerc was furious with himself after a last-lap mistake at the Istanbul Park circuit left the door open for Sergio Perez and Vettel to beat him to the podium.
Speaking on team radio afterwards, Leclerc claimed that he had been as “stupid” as in Baku last year, when he crashed on cold tyres in Q2.
“I did a shit job. I did a shit job. I did a f***ing shit job,” said Leclerc after the Istanbul race on the team radio, before the Ferrari pitwall tried to calm him down.
Leclerc’s error handed four-time world champion Vettel his first F1 podium of the season – during what will be his final campaign for Ferrari.
Reflecting on the Monegasque’s frustration, Vettel reckoned that Leclerc needed to put in context losing a simple podium finish against his potential to be a future world champion.
“I think having Charles as a team-mate, I often see myself in him,” said Vettel, who is moving to join Racing Point when it is rebranded as Aston Martin next year.
“He’s a lot younger, he’s very quick and I think the fact that – and I haven’t had the chance to talk to him yet – but I will tell him later that being on the podium or not actually is a bit irrelevant for him.
“He has so many years ahead of him and so many podiums to come, which I’m sure of.
“It’s right that he is angry. He did a mistake and lost the podium that way but, as I said, in the big picture probably irrelevant for him.”
Although Vettel and Leclerc have not always had the best of relationships, having famously collided in Brazil last year and at the Styrian Grand Prix this season, they have worked well as team-mates this season.
Vettel insists there is no personal needle over their final lap swap around in Turkey.
“I think I’m mature enough, I never let this kind of stuff really heat up and get between us,” explained Vettel.
“I’m happy for anything that he achieves and will achieve in the future because he’s a good kid.
“Obviously it was a very tough race and I think all of us were very close to losing it completely at various stages in the race.
“Obviously it’s extra painful when it happens in the last lap.”
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