Sebastian Vettel joked that Ferrari should consider leaving its Formula 1 team principal Mattia Binotto at home more often after the Scuderia recorded its best result of the 2020 season at the Turkish Grand Prix. 

Vettel claimed his first podium in over a year ahead of teammate Charles Leclerc in wet conditions during last Sunday’s race as the Italian outfit logged a 27-point haul with third and fourth places - marking its best return of 2020.

Binotto was absent from Turkey as part of a plan to run the team from its Maranello base for some of the remaining races in the current season to evaluate how successful it was to manage the team remotely, with sporting director Laurent Mekies overseeing operations from the pitwall. 

“I think it’s quite bad… I think we scored probably the most points this year for us and Mattia wasn’t here!” Vettel joked. "If the next race we don’t score as many points we try again to leave him at home! 

“No, I don’t think it’s related to that. I don’t believe in this kind of stuff. I’ve worked with Laurent already 12 and 13 years ago and I think we has come a long way, I have come a long way and yeah, he does take care of us with Mattia not being here. 

“I think he’s a capable guy and as I said, it’s not only down to him or down to Mattia, in the end it’s a team effort. 

"There’s so many people, so many different links that have to come together to have a good weekend and obviously this weekend we benefit from the conditions, probably the surface and also the wet conditions but yeah, we hope to have good races also the next three.” 

Binotto believes Vettel’s return to the F1 podium in Turkey was “very important” for the four-time world champion after a difficult season with Ferrari. 

"I'm very pleased for Sebastian," Binotto said. "I think a podium for him is very important. It has been a difficult season for him.

"I think he has started being, at least now at the end of the season, [more] comfortable with the car. He's delivering better.

"He had a very good start, very consistent, with good pace. He was managing the tyres, managing to keep the positions, and holding the positions. And overall, even on the last lap, he did well because he took the opportunity. And it's great for him.

"He just finished third, very close to Perez. But great, I'm happy for him. Still three races, and hopefully we will do as well in the next one."

 

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