Sebastian Vettel Q&A: Im feeling overwhelmed 25 Nov 2012
In Brazil on Sunday Red Bulls Sebastian Vettel became only the third driver in history to win three successive titles, equalling the stellar achievements of Juan Manuel Fangio and Michael Schumacher. He also became the youngest triple champion in F1 history. We caught up with Vettel to review his race
Q: Sebastian, having won the title after such a nerve wrecking race, how much adrenalin is still rushing through your veins?
Sebastian Vettel: Ha, I think at the moment you could prick me and I wouldnt notice it! It was an unbelievable afternoon. I think providence couldnt have made it more difficult for us than it actually was! If I think back, the start was not bad but then Mark (Webber) pushed me towards the left side so I had to brake very early and lost positions, which didnt put me in the best position for Turn Four when suddenly I was hit from behind. I was then unexpectedly facing traffic coming towards me which was not exactly an ideal position! (smiles) I turned the car around and noticed that there wasnt too much damage - the front wing was still there - and I then realised that it was possible to start the catch-up. When it got dry it got more difficult, as there was damage on the car and I couldnt overtake on the straight. I think in that phase Ferrari did their best to use Felipe Massa and I think during these laps there were a lot of obstacles put in our way. But that didnt distract us and when the rain set in towards the end we were able to gain again. I think the pit stop was terribly misplaced - but obviously we were doomed. But all the time we believed in it, even when the traffic was coming towards me at the start. I am still overwhelmed and its hard to find the words for what happened today!
Q: So much happened but perhaps the incident with Senna at the start was the most critical
SV: Sure when looking at the result you could say it didnt matter but in the moment it happened everything looked lost. Its funny that everyone was predicting that if it rained on Sunday we would have a hard time but the contrary was the case. So much for all the prophets in the paddock! (laughs)
Q: Jenson Button was a huge help. Had he dropped out nothing could have saved you
SV: I dont see it that way. As I see it we do not have to be thankful to anybody but ourselves. Everybody did his race today but of course I want to congratulate him for his win. We had a tough time on Sunday afternoon but a big load has been taken off with this title win.
Q: You finished the race on the intermediates but it was quite a surprise when you pitted to change from the softs. How did that spice up the race?
SV: Ha, that indeed didnt help our ambitions! (laughs) We didnt have too many tyres left and we lacked pace when it had started to dry. But we knew that it was going to rain so I wanted to stay out for one lap but had lost the team radio in between. I heard them but they couldnt hear me, which also didnt help when it suddenly started to rain significantly. I was shouting inter, inter but they couldnt hear me and when I came in they were not prepared and had to get the tyres out of the pits. Weve had a tough season - tougher than 2010 and 2011 - with a lot of obstacles that we have had to bat to the side and we did. I was raised in the spirit that lies will catch up with you and that honesty is the best policy so we didnt let others with their actions distract us and it worked! I am overwhelmed and it will definitely take several days for the whole thing to sink in.
Q: Youve taken your third successive title. What are you up to this evening?
SV: Believe me, Red Bull knows what to do in such a situation!
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