Dominant win for Vettel piles pressure on Webber (Red Bull race review)

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Sebastian Vettel took points off team mate Mark Webber for the third race in a row, and has halved his team mate’s championship lead in that time.

Red Bull were able to translate their performance advantage into a one-two start and finish, giving them a 45-point lead in the constructors’ championship.

Sebastian VettelMark Webber
Qualifying position12
Qualifying time comparison (Q3)1’30.785 (-0.068)1’30.853
Race position12
Average race lap1’42.402 (-0.017)1’42.419
Pit stops11

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Sebastian Vettel

Vettel was fastest in both sessions on Friday, ending the day four tenths of a second faster than his team mate. He resumed his dominance on Sunday morning, heading all three parts of qualifying, though Webber cut his advantage to a few hundredths.

He repeated his 2009 victory from pole position, though it wasn’t quite as straightforward as last year’s race. His car twitched forward on the grid but he stopped it before the lights changed and avoided a jump-start penalty.

And he was held up by Jenson Button for 13 laps after his pit stop, though never enough for his team mate to have a go at passing him.

Compare Sebastian Vettel’s form against his team mate in 2010

Mark Webber

Lined up second on the grid alongside his team mate for the sixth time this year. Having been several tenths off Vettel’s pace in practice he had the gap down to a scant few hundredths in qualifying.

He was beaten to the first corner Robert Kubica but it didn’t matter as the Renault driver retired within a lap. After that he had an uneventful race in Vettel’s slipstream.

Compare Mark Webber’s form against his team mate in 2010

2010 Japanese Grand Prix

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    Image © Red Bull/Getty images

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    Keith Collantine
    Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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    36 comments on “Dominant win for Vettel piles pressure on Webber (Red Bull race review)”

    1. He resumed his dominance on Saturday morning, heading all three parts

      *Sunday ;)

      1. Tut-tut, Keith. :L

      2. Ah, the number of times I’d made that mistake earlier but caught it. Changed it now.

        1. I suppose the checklist failed you there Keith!

          Still amazed by the amount of articles yesterday after a probably largely sleepless weekend. Good thing Cari helps out with the mondays round-up.

    2. Red Bull more than likely to win the CC now…

      Also, it’s interesting to note, that if Vettel wins the next 3 races, and Webber comes 2nd; Vettel’ll win.

      I think the tension’ll rise again, and hopefully them two have learnt from Turkey. D:

      1. I really hope to see them battle it out at the front. Since Turkey, there has been a very well behaved couple of Red Bull drivers on the track and in the paddock. I think a win for Vettel in Korea will definitely get Webber wound up. Lets hope Alonso can capitalise on some of their rivalry.

        What a great season this is!

    3. He was beaten to the first corner Robert Kubica

      *by Robert Kubica

      1. Or they’ve renamed the corner.

    4. So, anyone else getting the feeling alonso’s got the championship in the bag? webber would just about have it by now if red bull were serious. after belgium, we should have seen a switch in singapore and at japan. but no, the team refuses to back one driver, meanwhile alonso is dominating ferrari.

      I don’t understand why red bull pitted webber straight after vettel. surely he should be allowed to do a few extra laps just to see if he had the pace to pass him. he would certainly have been quick enough to retain second so it would hardly have been a risk.

      oh well, i guess we’ll continue to see red bull shoot themselves in the foot for the rest of the season as we have pretty well all season already. well done guys.

      1. Nope. Both McLaren drivers (and possibly Kubica) will be taking points of Alonso in the remaining races. I think it’ll come down to Webber and Vettel.

        1. Agree, I’ve a feeling Hamilton will lose Alonso this title even if Red Bull start messing up again.

          But I imagine Red Bull are instructing their drivers to keep it cool (not race each other) unless one of them (Vettel) will be out of contention if they don’t beat the other – or it’s the final race. Most likely scenario: two Vettel wins and Webber seconds with a final race off for the title, all even.

      2. Well he’s not going to win if he finishes behind the Webber and Vettel every race :P. Dont forget he’s out of engines too, that’s got to hurt him by Abu Dhabi.

        I think it’s too close to call between Webber and Vettel, if I had to bet I’d say Vettel but Mark comes up with epic weekends out of nowhere sometimes.

        1. Webber has one more new engine that Vettel doesn’t. How decisive might that be in qualifying somewhere?

      3. I agree and I commented about it in the article about Lewis. RBR cannot win. Vettel or Webber can win. And I mean that if RBR does not make it clear who to promote, I seriously expect these two to make it increasingly hard for each other to win… this will play well for whoever follows them more closely: that could be Lewis or Alonso… however, I am convinced this is McLaren’s (and ferrari’s) only hope moving forward… they are probably dreaming of Vettel living up to his reputation…

      4. Not by any means. If anything this race showed that Ferrari might just be lacking that bit too much. If Hamilton steals a win in Korea or Abu Dhabi Alonso will have his work cut out.

        1. Abu Dhabi looks like a Ferrari circuit to me. Its characteristics is much like Hockenheim but RB won there last year.

          Korea has lots of straights that would bring Macca back into it but again both Red Bull and Ferrari will be strong there too.

          Interlagos is a bit bumpy for Macca and a bit flowing for Ferrari and Red Bull won there last year.

          I don’t think Webber would feel so much pressure from Vettel’s win in Suzuka for various reasons.

          a) he has increased his lead in the DC
          b) there was hardly anything between the two in either quali or the race on a Vettel circuit
          c) on the circuits ahead he’s had good pace in the past
          d) he knows that finishing ahead of Vettel in unknown Korea would almost force the team to start favouring him, the pressure is on Vettel to keep winning every race

          1. Korea should be favourable to all. Since it has a couple of long straights, Mclaren should gain some time. Red bull will like the high speed corners, and Ferrari will enjoy the hard braking and straights as well. Plus, Fernando seems like the driver who adapts quickly to new circuits better than most drivers.

            Brazil might hold a little advantage for Red Bull over Ferrari, and Abu Dhabi will hold a little advantage for Ferrari over Red Bull.

            I think Mclaren is out if though, unless we see the Rb drivers take themselves out, and Fernando get back to his mid season form.

      5. So, anyone else getting the feeling alonso’s got the championship in the bag?

        Never when you’re 14 points down.

      1. Could this be a response to Webber saying:

        “As we’ve seen this year, five of us are capable of winning races,” he added. “Well, four in the dry – Jenson’s (Button) had a few races in the wet conditions – but in the dry conditions it’s been four of us who can win.”

        penultimate paragraph of

        1. Lol. I bet Jenson Button prays for a wet race every saturday night, just so that he has the option of taking a strategic risk and outsmarting his rivals. In a dry race he hasn’t looked capable of taking a single win all year. I think thats why in a mid season interview, Alonso had commented that he considers both the Red Bull drivers and Lewis Hamilton as his rivals, despite Jenson being 2nd in the championship at the time.

          Its gotta be seriously hurtful to Button if your rivals do not consider you a serious threat no matter how many points you score.

          1. I guess Monza never happened then. It is the exception though.

            1. He didn’t look too bad in Turkey either where he successfully passed Hamilton briefly.

        2. Sounds like the old psych-warefare kicking in between them.

          1. Button replies with saying that Vettel is going to be the Red Bull driver who takes the title.

    5. As a McLaren fan, it pains me to say it, but it’s likely that they are done and dusted. It’s doubtful that both RB machines, and Alonso’s Ferrari, will experience enough misfortune over the next three races to let them back into the mix. If it does come down to those three, I’ll be (reluctantly) pulling for Webber. It’s his championship to win or lose at the moment, and I wouldn’t mind seeing Vettel eating a bit of humble pie. His time will come. Alonso is probably the wild card. Should be fun!

      1. My sentiments exactly. If it has to be one of them, I hope it is Webber. Vettel will be a world champion one day, but Webber probably doesnt have that many chances left.

        1. You guys say that now, but all it would take is Vettel defending too hard into Turn 1 somewhere and everything changes.

    6. It worries me, as I am 99.99% sure RBR will do what it takes to give Vettel every opportunity to win over Webber. And frankly, Vettel does not and will not deserve the win. He is supposedly the wunderkid of the century, the golden child of RBR and in the best car – yet he is not even leading the championship. Says a lot really. Frankly, I’d be (almost) happy with anyone other than Vettel winning.

      1. I hope, that’s apart from Alonso, if he does it by less than 7 points?

        1. That would be the least palatable outcome of all for me, and if Alonso were to win I don’t think he could do it by more than 7 points, so at this point I hope it’s not him.

      2. Yes me too, Vettel has plenty of time up his sleeve, Webber is just about at the end of his career. But i think that Vettel will have to be “on his toes” when the next Aussie driver gets in the team, so watch out for young Daniel Ricciardo.

      3. “wunderkid of the century, the golden child of RBR”

        Not words ever spoken by Vettel himself of course, but I’m sure you wouldn’t have been taken in by a caricature poorly constructed by the media. You must have your own sources.

        Vettel had a seasoned F1 driver well beaten in his 1st year in the team and 2nd year in the sport. Won a few races with great drives. Not good enough for you.. OK.

        This hard fought championship will be well deserved by any of the drivers in contention, regardless of the mistakes along the way. Unrealstic as it is I hope Lewis can still be in contention come the season finale, not because I’m a massive LH fan but because I love the sport.

    7. There certainly wasn’t much between Vettel and Webber when you compare the times.
      On another note,it really has me beat as to how Webber can continually get bad starts off the line??
      Although there is no longer traction or launch control in F1 anymore i suspect there are mechanical means to get these cars off the line.

    8. Webber is in the best possible position to win. He can win the championship even if he does not win a race. All he has to do is finish ahead of Alonso in 2 of the 3 races and then Alonso will take points off Vettel in the third one. Just watch it that is how it will go.

    9. jaws song comes to mind when I see vettel catching webber in points, reckon he will get him and beat him at the end.

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