Formula One heads to Korea… and is Vettel’s third title inevitable?

Sunday Afternoon Club rarely sits down to write anything hoping to be shouted down firmly, swiftly and conclusively, but today it does. We want to talk about Sebastian Vettel: and we’d be very surprised if he isn’t leading the World Championship by breakfast time on Sunday.

It’s funny, but it doesn’t seem like there’s a huge amount of love out there for the very lovable German at the moment. Not as much, for example, as there was for Michael Schumacher last week. Is it really just easier to love a loser than a winner?

To un-pack that a bit, we are talking about Michael’s second career here now. We’ll come to his first in a bit. Even by his own admission, Michael has not lived up to expectations. Seb, meanwhile, continues to excel; another pole, another fastest lap, another win last weekend, and who would bet against the same this? Nobody has ever clocked them up at the speed the current back-to-back World Champion has. We think he is on his way to his third title, we truly do.

So that will be three world championships some time before his 26th birthday. Michael Schumacher had just the one.

Back then of course, there wasn’t much love for Michael either (although, for the record, no social media with which to propagate it at the time). The problem was simply that Michael and his team were ruthless about winning, and Michael also came across as aloof. Yet there’s no doubting Red Bull’s commitment to winning, although it manifests itself somewhat differently to how it did at Michael’s Benetton team…

But Sebastian Vettel, aloof? We don’t think so. Here he is being excellent on Top Gear. And Google him on David Letterman. It’s hard to imagine any world-class sportsman with fewer airs. And it’s the same on the race track. Any doubt about his ability to race hard was sunk at Monza last year, and arguably this year too. Sure, he likes to command a race from the front, but every driver does. Fact is, Vettel can be as spectacular as he needs to be. And all those poles say one thing only; fast, very fast.

So why do we get the feeling that everyone will be a little deflated if Vettel does win and overtake Alonso this weekend? It can’t be championship fatigue, not after this season; it’s never been so competitive, so our champ will have had to have really won it.

So here’s our thought before you give us yours. Maybe Vettel is just too darn happy, playful, sweet? Maybe we look for our racing heroes to have a bit of an edge, like Kimi or if you’re looking for the middle ground, Jenson. Ponder that. List some of your own heroes from other sports. Bet there’s not one of them would draw an arrow on Jake Humphrey’s shirt pointing to his crotch with the word ‘love’ appended…

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Because Shumi won 2 championship with an inferior car, the Benetton, Williams was better. He made spectacular and many horrible manouvers. He crashed in Monaco and eventually, he got the best car. ( I never liked him anyway)

My impression is that we haven’t seen Seb make a big effort with a lesser car, like Alonso does every weekend. And he also won with “benetton” his two crowns which wasn’t preciselly a killing machine…

Sep is ridiculously fast and precise and correct, so it’s like he doesn’t put an effort. Maybe is that. But I don’t think he get the opposition Shumi got back then.

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WELL SAID PUMA, YOU´VE HIT IT SPOT ON

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A german always winning will never be appealing to the english press, no matter how positive a personality he might have.
Secondly this thought comes up if he takes the title again: Oh no, not again a years long and boring winning streak like we had with Schuhmacher.
When he’s not winning or having a bad setup car he can be pretty unlikeable.
Thirdly, he is a sucessful, very rich, young guy who is paid for doing incredibly exciting and dangerous stuff. How can you sympathize with or relate to someone like that?

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My personal favourite racing driver is Kimi, purely for that interview where his response was ‘i was taking a dump’… how much funnier can a driver be! Sebastien is too loveable, too nice, and because of this he’s just a component of the RB8 that just makes it a bit faster than the other cars. He’ll quite likely win the title but don’t underestimate Fernando’s skill.. What I’d like in Korea is Seb and Fernando to take each other out whilst racing hard and Kimi to win, then the championship would be verrry interesting…..

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You got to admit, his personality is brilliant compared to other drivers. And he’s not exactly had the best car this year like last. Look at the reliability and the pace before Singapore. Wasn’t what I would call dominating.

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the five races that come going to be interesting
but I am ALONSISTA

AVANTI FER

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Its a far cry from years ago when Schumi had title won with races to go and it sure makes the end of the season exciting!. If Ferrari get the car right then Alonso is my man!

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I think it can be partially attributed to the fact (like “Puma” said above) that outside of his Monza win with STR, Vettel just hasn’t had to wrestle a mid-field car to a victory. I think in general, we tend to really appreciate the drivers who have had genuine struggles. A case in point was Button’s championship, I don’t think many were begrudging him, as it truly felt that he had “earned” the opportunity to be crowned king.

On a personal note, I get annoyed when Vettel develops a “bratty” persona if things aren’t going his way. When you compare him to the real veterans who just grind through the tough times, it really makes him seem obnoxious.

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Ahem, if you do a bit of googling, you’ll quickly find out that for the beginning of 94 season the benetton was clearly the car to beat and senna would constantly complain about how the williams was undriveable before his tragic accident. During the second half of the season schumi had a two race suspension and williams managed to close the gap between the cars so things were tighter. But to say schumi won a championship with a midfield car is clearly ridiculous although his teammates were never able to get the same out of the car (jos the boss, anyone). Then again in 1995 the benetton had the fastest car on the grid, with the best driver in it so the championship was only close between benetton and williams. And schumi winning 9 races in a midfield car? Dont think so.

What i’m saying here is that you just don’t win wdc in a midfield car, schumacher hasn’t and no one else has, at least not in the last 20 years (my memory is a bit limited beyond that).

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interesting conversation

It´s always hard to compare drivers in their prime and era.

But saying that Vettel only wins and won 2 consecutive championships because he is in the best car, is not factual. He won Monza as the youngest Pilot ever in a……Torro Rosso, 2008 right? hardly a midfield car.

I still think that Alonso is the best right now. But he is more polarizing than Vettel. Interesting read is the international press after the race.

Everybody at least respects or likes Vettel, he is a Legend in the making, we should sit back and watch it.

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If Schumacher can’t win (especially with the crappy Mercedes car and his recent bad luck), then I kind of want Ferrari to win. Mostly because they’re Ferrari. Alonso’s cool but I at least like all the other drivers on the top teams too. I’m pulling a bit for Lotus too, again, mostly because they’re Lotus and I’d liked to see them do well after coming back now as a top team. On driver alone, I don’t know who I want to win out of those who have a chance

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I’d say what Puma said, were it not for Vettel’s track record in the Toro Rosso, right at the beginning. I’d rather say it about Hamilton, but he’s moving to Mercedes for that very reason. So I’ll just shut up about that.
Vettel is the nicest of guys off track, on it he can be a bit… boyishly boorish, still. When guys like Schumacher, Hakkinen, Raikkonen, Alonso, Kovalainen and such were young, they weren’t immature. The next generation is just that.

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And, while I realise I’m not female (I checked) and thus not a good judge, I’d say that Vettel just isn’t good looking enough to be attractive. I imagine girls melt for the likes of Alonso, Webber or Kovalainen. It helps.
Even the Iceman has plenty charisma, if only by active denial. In the sense of ‘get Kimi to smile and you go home feeling proud’. Vettel would smile at everyone but Webber.

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Cheeky dig there at the end Takk ;) Ps i do agree with your point though, look at any sport and you’ll find the better looking gents are the most media centred. Getting the girls on your side is vital for success in sport :D

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I have to admit Vettel is a cool kid, but not the kind of personality you look up to. There is too much hype about him and he is not that much faster than Webber, who is IMO much more charismatic, a true man. He is just a cool and talented kid, I’ll like him when he becomes a true man.

Besides, the fact Dr Marko is supporting him so much is a very good reason to hate him.

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J.A. is right, that ’94 williams was quite simply rubbish. A chassis designed for electronic aids that had been removed. That Bennetton was indeed the car to beat. Plus I’m pretty convinced that that team had kept some of the aids that had been banned (it was being run by the cheating swine Flavio Briatore). As you may have guessed, I have NEVER been a schumacher fan…..

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@CymroStig: I noticed how any time Kimi smiles or even laughs (it happens, these days) during an interview, it’s always mentioned. Not so with other drivers. And most of the journalists must be male, I hazard. Re good looks: well, it’s sort of obvious, isn’t it? Melanie even did a song about it in the ’60’s.
And getting the girls on your side is also first priority in popmusic. Even if you’re as gay as Take That on nitrous gas.
@dec: that one Benetton was the car to beat. The second car was rubbish, Verstappen complained later about never getting any updates. Senna sussed it while racing, the #1 car probably still had active suspension as you say. The FIA investigated, but couldn’t prove it beyond doubt.

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hope Signor Alonso has, a good race
as i do not like Vettell.
his hair is stupid, do not like his
helmet collection.

Signor Alonso, please learn how to
make Vettel disappear.

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The thing is i want to like vettel, and i do….but OFF the racetrack. i really dislike the way he celebrates, his bratty sore loser attitude to losing, and the fact that hes in by far the best car (all the other drivers seem to agree). I think alonso really deserves the title this year simply because of the huge amount of respect that people have when they see him taking the absolute most from quite frankly a pretty sub standard car that ferrari have made! People say that vettel is a real racer because of monza in that torro rosso, but look at the facts and youll find that in those conditions on that track, his car was actually the best suited to it….even more than the red bulls! If you think of all the great races that some drivers have had (im thinking of the number of times you see schumi scythe up the grid from 18th to 2nd or 3rd….or obviously the senna drives or some of the inspiring stuff that hamilton has done!) but you do not think of vettel because aside from one slightly interesting overtake in moza last year (which somehow gave every vettel fan an excuse to say “oh yes look clearly he can overtake like anyone! ….when he had a better car) there has not been one race where i have seen vetttel and not wanted him to slide off the track and get rid of his 18 second lead! Even the TV coverage proves it, when you see vettel on one of those races where the red bull is by far the best car, you see him at the start and then just as he crosses the line. I for one would rather enjoy seeing him get a puncture halfway through the race! I particularly enjoyed it when his KERS failed, as im sure most of the other people that watch F1 did as well!! credit where credits due, adrian newey you designed a beast of a car for vettel (webber is left to struggle) but i dont like watching him win.

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the redbull car has not been the best car this season, so why does oliroolz says this?

Hoya: When Button won, he had the most dominant car F1 had ever seen, over 2s faster than every other car at times.

Only in the closing stages are we seeing the redbull car perform well, before it was mclaren being the best car thus far

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I don’t like watching Vettel drive, mainly because he has no style and he’s a bad loser… I know he overtook Alonso once but basically he can’t race; he can simply drive fast on his own. As for Micheal!! I totally hate him… he had at Benneton and Ferrari and had electronic aids after they were banned so when he took on Senna it wasn’t a level playing field. He’ll never get any respect from me. The people who claim he has 7 World Titles are wrong; 4 at the most. Also if Vettel wins this championship he will equal the greats such as Senna and I know for a fact he isnt alf as good and I dont want to have that in the history books. I’d much rather Alonso won as he has a lot of skill.

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So Vettel has no skill and is not good? He cant drive? To each their own.

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Great issues altogether, you simply gained a new reader. What would you suggest about your post that you just made some days ago? Any certain?

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Vettel is a nice guy, but he is always quick in a quick car, and middling when Newey has misplaced his genius for race or two. He won in the STR, but at a bizarre event. Whereas Alonso is always quick, shabby car or not.
So he’s neither as loathsome as Career 1 Schumacher, as loveable as JB, or even demanding the grudging respect of an Alonso (who has slaughtered his team-mates and won titles in very average cars)

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If Kimmi wins the championship this year then you can say he is better than everyone because he is third in a midfield car.

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