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Sebastian Vettel Q&A: I'm not thinking about the title yet 22 Sep 2011

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing with the media.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 14, Singapore Grand Prix, Preparations, Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore, Thursday, 22 September 2011 Winners trophies for Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 13, Italian Grand Prix, Race, Monza, Italy, Sunday, 11 September 2011 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 14, Singapore Grand Prix, Preparations, Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore, Thursday, 22 September 2011 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB7 on the grid.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 13, Italian Grand Prix, Race, Monza, Italy, Sunday, 11 September 2011 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 14, Singapore Grand Prix, Preparations, Marina Bay Street Circuit, Singapore, Thursday, 22 September 2011 Race winner Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing celebrates in parc ferme.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 13, Italian Grand Prix, Race, Monza, Italy, Sunday, 11 September 2011 Race winner Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB7 celebrates as he takes the chequered flag waved by John Surtees (GBR).
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, Belgian Grand Prix, Race, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Sunday, 28 August 2011

Everywhere you turn in the Singapore paddock people are wracking their brains trying to figure out what needs to happen in order for Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel to win his second successive title at Marina Bay. Vettel himself, however, isn’t tempted to join in and is instead fully focused on doing the best possible job he can this weekend…

Q: Sebastian, you arrive here on the verge of winning a second championship. How are you approaching the weekend?
SV:
First of all I feel excited because I love this race. The last two times we came here we’ve been pretty close to making it to the top spot, but didn’t quite make it. So hopefully we can make it this Sunday. It is one of my favourite tracks because it is so different. It is a pretty long lap and a very challenging race at almost two hours long. It is tough for the drivers, for the car and for the brakes. Regarding the championship a lot of people have explained to me the situation, so of course I am aware of what Sunday could mean. Very clearly the target was always to win the championship but it was never the target to win it at any particular venue, so the objective has not changed - we will try to do our best over the weekend and to get as many points as we can.

Q: So even though you don’t want to think too much about what may happen on Sunday night, you do hold the advantage…
SV:
Yes, indeed, it looks a bit like it. But as I just said it’s not the time to think about it, as it will be a long weekend, and as of yet we have not won anything. Of course we are in a good position, but there is still some way to go.

Q: You’ve made it look easy…
SV:
Well, the way we have operated and behaved this season as a team has been so much better than in previous years. But believe me, it hasn’t been easy! You still have to go out and get the job done. We have learnt a lot and even when things looked shaky we’ve kept our course. Even when we weren’t in the best position we were sometimes able to win the race, or if it became clear that we couldn’t, we didn’t panic. So instead having a make or break attitude, and probably ending up in the gravel or in the wall, we managed to finish on the podium or at least in the points. It would be something special to win the championship before the season actually ends, but we still have a number of races to go. We are in a strong position but everybody would love to swap with us so we will have to do our best this weekend.

Q: Why has the Red Bull been so strong this year?
SV:
I would say that this year’s car is not as strong as last season’s one, but we were able to learn a lot from the last two seasons, especially when it comes to keeping cool within the team and maintaining concentration. So even if things were not running so well at a particular race, we were still able to score as many points as possible.

Q: You’re being very logical. Are you not nervous at all?
SV:
Of course there are situations, where I feel a certain nervousness in me, which is positive. But then you have to be clear that things can change very easily. There are many examples in sport where somebody looks set for victory but then lose out as they’re not able to stay focused. For me it is only over, when we have won the title. It’s as simple as that. I am sure that the other teams would love to switch positions with us.

Q: During the race, do you ever ask the pit wall from time to time how the standings are looking?
SV:
No. It is not relevant what the others are doing, and who is first, or fifth or whatever. These facts won’t make you go faster or slower. If it was the case then in my eyes you are doing something wrong. The only thing that counts is that you deliver the very best that is possible. You have enough time after the race to look at possible forecasts and speculative calculations.

Q: Does it feel more exciting to win a second championship?
SV:
In a way yes, I guess. But I haven’t won a second one yet so I cannot judge! Of course the first one is a big relief. This year the car was fantastic and so was the team, but when you know that you’re in good shape and the odds seem like you could do it again, there is still one more step to go - you really have to do it. To really achieve it is hard work.

Q: You just said that people have explained to you the scenarios that would see you become champion this weekend. Does that mean you yourself haven’t looked into it too much?
SV:
Probably yes - because it doesn’t make me faster or slower on the track. It is a mathematical gimmick. We will have to see if we are the best around the track, and of course, if we see a chance to win we have to go for it. That’s what we are here for. If the gap is not there we will not take any stupid risks. You have to let other people worry about numbers and calculations.

Q: What does it feel like to race during the night?
SV:
It is artificial light, and some corners are a bit dark, but there is more than enough light to know where you want to be going. Still it is very different to racing during daylight. You have to concentrate much more. As I said before I love this track, as it is a very special one, and I would love to win here. A Singapore trophy is still missing from my collection…

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