Will Vettel buckle under home pressure?

TAGs: car racing, F1, German GP, Red Bull, Sebastian Vettel


No1 or silly Bastian?

Formula One is a game of fine margins and seldom has that been more in evidence than in qualifying for the German grand prix yesterday when Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel edged Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso out of pole position by 0.002 seconds.

For this race Vettel is aiming to be only the second German to win his home GP, so he will be even more up tight than normal, and given that he has been on pole six times already this season and yet remains 24 points adrift of Lewis Hamilton, the odds-on favourite will feel more than just G forces weighing down on his shoulders this afternoon before an expectant Teutonic crowd.

It makes for an intriguing build-up to the race which has seen a healthy rivalry develop between Vettel and Mark Webber, who was furious two weeks ago when the German received use of both of the two new front wings Red Bull had designed to improve downforce, which allowed him to secure pole at the Australian’s expense. “I think the team got the result they wanted,” said Webber bitterly afterwards.

But the Aussie, who was still smarting from the incident at the Turkish grand prix six weeks previously in which Vettel forced him off the road, got his own back by winning at Silverstone and declaring to the watching millions, “not bad for a No2 driver,” over the radio as he crossed the line.

Bring back smoking

This, though, is exactly the sort of rivalry you need in F1. In fact, you need it in all sports. A nice bit of hatred to up the ante make things a bit more tasty. It’s rivalry that makes what can sometimes appear to be a humdrum sport exciting, like in the old days when Niki Lauda waltzed into James Hunt’s hotel room to tell him that there was no way he was going to win that day. Or when Michael Schumacher thought nothing of crashing into Damon Hill to make sure he won the title.

If you ask me they should be allowed to spill oil on the road or let out a plume of smoke out from their cars while listening to the Peter Gun music, like in that old 80s Amiga computer game Spy Hunter.

It’ll probably be a while before Bernie Ecclestone agrees to these proposed changes but in the meantime Webber is a decent price with Bodog at 3/1 on a circuit where there might even be a pile up on the first corner if you’re lucky. Read more.


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