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Ecclestone: Vettel dominance 'why fans tune in'

It is a statement that will likely cause many to question just where he has left his marbles this time, but this frank and engaging exchange between F1 ringmaster Bernie Ecclestone and defending world champion Sebastian Vettel is well worth reading...
Swimming against the tide of popular opinion – as is so often his wont – Bernie Ecclestone has pronounced that Sebastian Vettel's crushing dominance in F1 2011 to-date is 'what makes it so interesting for the fans' and muses that there is no reason 'why there shouldn't be a Red Bull era' in much the same manner as that of Michael Schumacher and Ferrari.

As the sport's defending world champion, Vettel has been in imperious form this season, triumphing in six of the eight grands prix thus far and taking the chequered flag as runner-up in the other two, to establish a commanding 77-point advantage over any of his pursuers in the title standings.

To put that into perspective, even if either McLaren-Mercedes star Lewis Hamilton or Ferrari's Fernando Alonso won every single one of the remaining races in 2011, finishing second in each of them would still be sufficient for Vettel to comfortably clinch the crown. Little wonder Ecclestone rates him as 'the best'.

“You can't hide talent,” the sport's influential commercial rights-holder told the official F1 website. “He has an absolute will to win – and he has everything in his hands to do it. Probably others don't have the package that Sebastian has right now.

“He is in a similar position as Michael [Schumacher]. Sebastian is the best right now, and that's why he is dominating. That's what makes it so interesting for the fans, because every race weekend starts with a big question mark – who will be able to beat Vettel? That's why fans tune in.

“The competition Sebastian is facing is much bigger than that confronted by Michael, though. That makes Seb's wins even more noteworthy. I don't see a reason why there shouldn't be a Red Bull era just as Ferrari had theirs with Michael. He reminds me of Jochen Rindt – Seb will always stay grounded, no matter how big the success. That is what makes real champions. That was also Jochen's strength. Plus, both are lousy losers…”

Indeed, it is not only Vettel's on-track prowess that impresses Ecclestone, with the Formula One Management (FOM) chief executive waxing lyrical about the young German's manner away from the circuit, reasoning that – unlike some of his rivals – the way he behaves is 'how I expect a champion to be'.

“I don't like that some of the drivers are completely under the thumb of their teams and sponsors,” reflected the 80-year-old, who presented Vettel with a silver telegram and a ruler engraved with the names of all of the sport's world champions – as is tradition – in Abu Dhabi last November. “With Sebastian it is different. He is still his own master, which is obviously also because Red Bull and Didi Mateschitz allow it.

“Every F1 driver – and especially the champion – owes his success, his money and his popularity to the sport. That is why he ought to give something back – to be open and accessible. That's why I complained about Fernando Alonso, who in my view didn't represent F1 well enough.”





Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Saturday Practice, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6 and Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management
Thursday, Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management and Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6
Saturday Practice, Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management and Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6
Sunday, Bernie Ecclestone (GBR) turns 80 next week and for a special birthday present the Red Bull team have given him a Zimmer frame with Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6 with Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB6
08.05.2011- Race, Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management  and Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7
29.05.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 and Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management
08.05.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 and Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management
29.05.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 and Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management
29.05.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 and Bernie Ecclestone (GBR), President and CEO of Formula One Management
27.07.2014- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP) Scuderia Ferrari F14-T
27.07.2014- Race, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
27.07.2014- Race, Valtteri Bottas (FIN) Williams F1 Team FW36 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10
27.07.2014- Race, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05 and Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB10
27.07.2014- Race, Daniel Ricciardo (AUS) Red Bull Racing RB10
27.07.2014- Race, Nico Rosberg (GER) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
27.07.2014- Race, Kimi Raikkonen (FIN) Scuderia Ferrari F14-T and Lewis Hamilton (GBR) Mercedes AMG F1 W05
27.07.2014- Race, Crash, Sergio Perez (MEX) Sahara Force India F1 VJM07
27.07.2014- Race, The Safety car on the track

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walrus909

June 30, 2011 1:29 PM

Perhaps it is interesting for a billionaire loon wandering around the pits, with the catbird seat. But for the rest of us unfortunates watching the race for second on the tele, the lack of drama is miserable.



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