Formula 1


Red Bull's Marko slams suggestions of Vettel cheating

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Dr Helmut Marko has slammed suggestions Red Bull and Sebastian Vettel have been cheating after former team owner Gian Carlo Minardi claimed the German was using banned traction control.

Writing on his website last week Minardi, who was in Singapore 10 days ago, suggested he saw and heard evidence that Vettel's Red Bull car was behaving and sounding consistent with cars using the electronic aid.

"Utter nonsense!" Red Bull's Dr Helmut Marko told the German newspaper Bild.

Indeed that theory has since been proven wrong though further reports suggest Red Bull are using a clever engine map on Vettel's car that mimics the blown diffuser - an innovation of the team's respected designer Adrian Newey that was again banned by the FIA.

Bild reported that the FIA would not comment on the matter.

In the other Red Bull, Mark Webber has admitted the tyres have again been the main area where he has fallen back on his team-mate this season.

The Australian has pointed to the Pirelli tyres as the big reason why he has struggled to match Vettel since he came so close to winning the title in 2010.

"In 2011 I was only behind Sebastian in qualifying," Webber told Germany's Auto Motor und Sport.

"It was clearly something to do with the fact that his driving style was better suited to the car.

"In the race, we were pretty much the same -- I got a lot of fastest laps," he added.

Last year Webber was more competitive winning a few races and he claimed that was due to the RB8 being "more of a normal race car".

But in 2013 the gap between himself and Vettel has once again increased with the German dominating the Australian.

Again, Webber points to the tyres. "They are not always easy to understand," he said. "You lose a lot of time if you don't bring them into the right working window."

Referring back to Singapore where Vettel was not just a lot faster than Webber but also far ahead of the entire grid, Webber said the softer compounds was where he struggled most.

"On the medium tyres, I had a good balance. I was able to get the very best out of them but as soon as we went onto the softer ones, it was very difficult to drive."

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