Vettel blames Stroll for bizarre post-race shunt at Sepang
A post-race collision with Lance Stroll left Sebastian Vettel unimpressed. "It was completely unnecessary", said the Ferrari driver.
Sebastian Vettel pointed the finger of blame at Lance Stroll following their "completely unnecessary"Â post-race collision at the Malaysian Grand Prix, but the young Canadian insisted he was not responsible.
Vettel performed superbly at Sepang after being forced to start at the back of the grid - ultimately finishing fourth behind Max Verstappen, championship leader Lewis Hamilton and Daniel Ricciardo.
However, the Ferrari driver then suffered substantial damage to his car after the chequered flag had been waved, followingÂ a shunt involvingÂ Stroll as both cars headed back to the pits.
Vettel told Sky F1:Â "I went on the outside to pick up a bit of rubber -Â I think Lance wasn't looking and wanted to do the same. I was there already and we had contact - it was completely unnecessary. I think he just didn't look.
"It's not my fault if someone decides to pick up rubber and hit another car."
Race stewards decided neither Vettel nor Stroll wereÂ "wholly or predominantly to blame for the incident" as they opted against penalising the drivers.
Stroll agreed with that view, telling Sky F1:Â "I was just driving very slowly back to the pitlane. It was a very strange incident.
"The race wasn't going on so there was no intention from either of us."
It remains to be seen whether the damage to Vettel's car will leave the German needing to make a gearbox change - and incur a grid penalty - at next weekend's Japanese Grand Prix.
Yet he could still take heart from his pace at Sepang, following a miserable qualifying session in which he was unable to set a time due to an engine issue.
"I think we had a very good car - if we start ahead I think we win the race," he added.
"I think we were the quickest car for the majority of the race but we had to start last."