JULY 22, 2010
Horner: communication could have been better
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner has admitted that team communication 'could have been better' at the British Grand Prix, in which the decision to give the one remaining new spec front wing to Sebastian Vettel soured relations with eventual race-winner Mark Webber.
Speaking at Hockenheim, ahead of this weekend's German GP, round 11 of the 19-race world championship, Horner said: "Obviously at Silverstone we could have done a better job in communicating with the driver just before qualifying but situations happen sometimes, up and down the pitlane, where decisions have to be made."
"We spoke about it after the event and a lot was made of it, perhaps more than it warranted, but as a team we are pushing very hard, pushing to get components to the circuit very aggressively, as are the other front-running teams, and that's the way we will continue to operate. It's the only way we are going to be able to compete with the likes of Ferrari and McLaren."
Webber himself conceded: "It was a pretty emotionally charged weekend and we all know there were a few things that went on. These things can always get blown out pretty quickly and, to be honest, it has. Everything's fine, we had most of the discussions throughout the weekend, which went pretty well, but then we obviously tidied things up. I had no worries at all that things wouldn't be addressed quickly and they were."
Webber has been criticised in certain quarters, the German media especially, for taking the issue public, and for his comments on the slowdown lap at Silverstone, when he responded to Horner's message of congratulation with, "Not bad for a number two driver..."
Said Webber: "Christian and I had a good discussion about things, which wasn't too difficult, and here we are ready to go at the German GP. I'm looking forward to it. I don't have any regrets. As a sportsman -- and sport's why we're all here -- things happen in the heat of the moment. I should have put some colourful language either side of my radio transmission because then maybe it would never have got run, but obviously I was polite and it did get run and a few extra people heard what I had to say."
Radio transmissions between drivers and team are monitored and then broadcast with a slight delay provided that they do not contain profanities likely to offend the audience, which is what Webber was referring to.
"In the end," he added, "We are a very, very strong team. The mechanics, everyone together on the floor all the guys are very strong and it was a unique situation at Silverstone - one that we learned from. We will be going forward very aggressively from here on."