Reminiscing back to 2012, the Japanese Grand Prix saw Sebastian Vettel claiming the top spot at the podium. But that day at the Suzuka Circuit belonged to Kamui Kobayashi.
After almost 22 years, he became the first Japanese driver to claim a spot on the podium.
The Japanese fans were completely mind-blown by Kobayashi as the entire circuit erupted with chants of celebration.
However, in a recent podcast, Kamui Kobayashi reveals that he was almost uncomfortable and felt bad that Vettel’s victory celebrations were hampered because of him.
Kobayashi reveals that he was very grateful to the fans for making him feel like he was the winner and felt absolutely sorry for Seb and Felipe for ruining their celebration. He says,
“I am really thankful for all the Japanese fans. I think I was sad, I felt like winning (the winner, given the crowd’s celebration). It felt really, really sorry for Seb and Felipe (for upstaging their celebrations).
“I think Seb is always strong in Suzuka. And Felipe I think he was not long time been (on) the podium. He just came second after long, I don’t know maybe after one or two seasons. So he should be happy.”
Even though, Vettel won the Suzuka race and the Formula 1 drivers’ championship that season, he is currently facing difficulty to claim a podium finish.
Going through a rough patch, he managed to score only one podium finish last season. Considering his performance till now, his prospects for this season are not very bright.
The German has facing difficulty adapting to his new Aston Martin car from what we have seen at the pre-testing and the season opener at Bahrain. According to David Coulthard, Vettel might not even finish the season.
“I just don’t see how he’s going to rediscover that mojo. If Lance does to Seb what Charles Leclerc did to Seb, I just don’t see how he [Vettel] can finish the season.”
Aston Martin has pinned all its hopes on Vettel’s experience and skill. They are hoping that the German is able to get back in the game and start manifesting favorable results for the team soon.
What do you think the future holds for Vettel? Is this going to be his last season in F1? Let us know in the comments below!