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Sebastian Vettel: Still no team orders at Ferrari

Sebastian Vettel has refuted claims of Ferrari deploying teams orders to aid his 2017 Formula One title bid.

These claims come after Ferrari appeared to assist Vettel to wins in Monaco -- where Vettel was given the optimum strategy and took the lead off Kimi Raikkonen through the pit stops, and in Hungary -- where despite being significantly faster, Raikkonen remained behind Vettel, who had been managing a steering issue throughout the duration of the race.

Sebastian Vettel. Kym Illman/Sutton Images
The German currently leads the drivers' championship by seven points, and despite having a substantial 92 point lead over Raikkonen, Vettel says they are free to race without team orders.

"I'm a bit surprised by the way things are put. Kimi and myself, I can't speak for other people, but we're racing each other the whole year," Vettel said in the FIA press conference in Italy. "I read or heard after the Hungarian Grand Prix that he was protecting me. I think if you speak to him he'll make it pretty clear. He wasn't leaving anything behind.

"If he had the opportunity to properly pass me, I think he would have tried. That's fair enough. I think it would have been the same the other way around. We're racing for the team, we're trying to do our best. You're racing for yourself, but you're also racing for the team. It's something you need to keep in the back of your mind. I don't know what other teams are doing, but for us I think we both go flat out and see what happens. You can always talk about scenarios and so on, but it always turns out to be a bit different."

Vettel goes into this weekend looking to win the Italian Grand Prix for a fourth time, but a first for Ferrari. After missing out on the win in Belgium, Vettel believes he and the team learned things in defeat to Lewis Hamilton that will aid Ferrari's efforts in winning its home race for the first time since 2010.

"I think there are some things that I learned from Spa, that I think we learned as a team and I learned as a driver, things I would maybe do a bit differently, but at the time it felt like the right thing to do," Vettel added. "With hindsight, you are always a bit more clever. Here I think it's a different track, generally it's possible to overtake, so we'll see where we are in the race.

"Going into this weekend, I think we need to be fair and say that the track layout suits Mercedes, but the performance that we showed last week gives us hope. We try to do our best. There should be quite a good atmosphere and good support, so with all the love and passion we've received this year, we try to give something back."

Author: Connor McDonagh, ESPN UK
Source: http://www.espn.co.uk/f1/story/_/id/20519339/sebastian-vettel-no-team-orders-ferrari

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