• Belgian Grand Prix

Vettel unfazed by championship deficit

ESPN Staff
August 30, 2012 « Maldonado hoping to stay at Williams in 2013 | Massa keen to prove himself »
Sebastian Vettel: "The most important race to lead the championship is the last one" © Sutton Images
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Sebastian Vettel is unfazed by the deficit to Fernando Alonso in the championship standings, saying he is motivated by the 2010 season.

Two years ago, Vettel won the championship at the final race of the season having never led the standings previously. Although his second title last season was more dominant, he said that he was comfortable with the current gap in the standings because of the manner in which he won his first championship.

"The most important race to lead the championship is the last one; we had that experience in 2010," Vettel said. "I think if you compare this year to any other year - at least for myself - then probably 2010 is close, but equally I think we did a lot more mistakes in 2010 during the first part of the season. Myself, the team, we lost a lot more points than this year so far.

"I think this year there are probably only two races standing out where we should have scored more points. One is Valencia, which is obvious, and the other one is probably Malaysia but that's a racing incident; I'm not regretting what happened, these things do happen and they happen to other people as well."

Vettel also doesn't believe that his chances will be hurt by Red Bull being the only team to have two drivers in with a realistic opportunity to win the title.

"I don't know. If you look at the table that might be the impression you get but it could be pretty different five races down the road so we'll see. The message is we're free to race and that's always what the message has been since I've raced against Mark [Webber] at Red Bull Racing and that's what we continue doing, so it's nothing new for us."

Looking ahead to this weekend at Spa, Vettel admits he still finds the circuit "very special".

"It's incredibly fast. I walked the circuit this morning and every time we start at the start/finish, then you walk down to Eau Rouge and you look up and it's quite amazing. Then to imagine what you're going to do in the following days, it's a huge funpark for us; up and down, very challenging corners. Obviously we race on different tracks throughout the season but when we're here we're reminded why it's something very special."