Falling 28 points behind Lewis Hamilton in the title race, Jacques Villeneuve reckons Sebastian Vettel has no one but himself to blame for taking the risk.
Vettel crashed out of the Singapore Grand Prix after moving across the track to cover Max Verstappen, resulting in heavy contact.
While Verstappen retired on the spot, Vettel spun later on the opening lap with his already damaged Ferrari hitting the wall hard.
“Vettel only has himself to blame,” Villeneuve told Motorsport.com.
“If you take a start and move across the line, the chances are something might happen because you don’t know what is happening behind.
“They all do that at every start, you see that in Formula 4, Formula 3, they move across the line.
“Well if you do that, you pay the price.
“When you fight for a championship, you cannot take a risk like that.”
He added: “You don’t change line like this. It doesn’t matter if he could see Kimi [Raikkonen] or not. In his mind, he didn’t know if there were two or three cars there.
“He knew he had taken an average start, so he knew other people had taken better starts than him. That’s why we went across.
“To think that way they will slow down – no, he ended up crashing. Don’t point at the finger at Max. He was just there.”
Vettel escaped without penalty from the stewards who ruled it to be a racing incident.
Asked for his thoughts on the lack of punishment, Villeneuve said: “I think he has penalised himself already enough.”