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Vettel: Risk still a key part of F1 excitement

22 Jun 2016

Its high speeds and element of danger remain among the main attractions of Formula One racing. That is according to four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel.

“I think racing should keep its core pillars and speed is one of them,” said the Ferrari driver, speaking at the 2016 FIA Sport Conference.

“The cornering speeds we can do are incredible and that has remained one of the main pillars throughout. To some extent the danger as well, because that’s what also makes it exciting.”

Vettel also praised the new Baku City Circuit, venue for last weekend’s 2016 Formula 1 Grand Prix of Europe, dismissing suggestions from some other drivers that the track was unusually dangerous in places.

“I disagree,” said Vettel. “I think the FIA and the organisers did a hell of a job fitting that race track in a place not made for racing, but it’s fantastic.

“It’s a spectacular venue, there is very little room for error and that’s what makes it so exciting. That’s what made it exciting in the past and that’s what makes it exciting today.”

Asked about the key benefits of the technological advancements made in Formula One racing over the years, Vettel again cited speed - and safety, in which he stressed there must always be an ongoing quest for improvement.

“The best thing that has come out is that the cars are very quick!” said the German. “If you look at the cars from 10 years ago - 20, 30, 50 years ago - and where they are now, technology has allowed the cars to get a lot quicker, which makes them more exciting to drive. The feeling, the sensation you get is incredible.

“Equally, as I mentioned, the fact that the cars have become a lot safer is obviously a lot nicer for us [drivers]. We can’t shut our eyes if bad things happen. I think we need to react. I think we have in the last years and I think we still do now. That’s the right approach.”

Vettel is one the few to have driven a Formula One car equipped with a ‘halo’ cockpit protection device, due to be made mandatory in some form from the start of the 2017 F1 season.

WATCH: Ride onboard as Vettel trials halo concept