Sebastian Vettel maintains he did nothing wrong in an overtaking move, which cost him a 20-second penalty at Sunday’s German Grand Prix.

Formula One’s double world champion was demoted from second to fifth as a result of the penalty imposed for leaving the track while overtaking McLaren’s Jenson Button on the penultimate lap.

“In my view everything was correct but you can’t do anything if those responsible see things differently,” the 25-year-old German said on his homepage.

“It’s like in football: one referee gives a penalty, the other doesn’t. You have to live with it.” The Red Bull driver, who is third in the standings behind overall leader Fernando Alonso, who won the race in Hockenheim, and teammate Mark Webber, said he was sorry most of all for the team and the fans.

Vettel has received backing from Red Bull motorsport chief Helmut Marko who told Austria’s ServusTV late Monday that “the whole situation was triggered by Button, who left Sebastian no room and pushed him out.” Vettel was not given the benefit of the doubt, he said, adding: “There is a bad aftertaste. There is a double standard.” Marko compared the penalty on Vettel to “capital punishment for stealing chickens.”