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Far too soon to crown Vettel just yet, urges Gené

Ferrari test-driver Marc Gené insists that defeatism must make way for determination at Maranello if the team is to have any chance at all of turning the tables on Red Bull Racing in F1 2011 - and that to crown Sebastian Vettel now would be suicidal
Marc Gené has cautioned that it would be 'premature' to crown Sebastian Vettel as the F1 2011 World Champion just yet and that to admit defeat at this stage of the campaign would be 'a mistake' – with the Ferrari test-driver revealing that the Scuderia is going 'race-by-race' in its bid to catch up and confident that 'at Silverstone we will see things clearer'.

As he defends his maiden drivers' title in the top flight, Vettel has triumphed in six of the opening eight grands prix this season – and taken the chequered flag as runner-up in the other two – to establish a commanding 77-point advantage in the standings over his nearest pursuers Mark Webber and Jenson Button, and 99 clear of Fernando Alonso, despite the Spaniard finishing up on the podium in two of the last three outings and looking to have the speed to at least take the fight to Red Bull Racing's runaway pace-setter.

Following last weekend's European Grand Prix in Valencia, the two-time F1 World Champion confessed that the destiny of the laurels is no longer in his or Ferrari's hands [see separate story – click here], but Gené – who earlier this month finished in fourth place in the 2011 Le Mans 24 Hours with Peugeot – insists that determination must replace defeatism as the byword at Maranello.

“What should you do when the gap is 99 points?” the former Minardi and Williams ace mused in an interview with Spanish newspaper El Mundo. “When it no longer depends on you, there is no choice but to go race-by-race. The truth is that we are fighting face-to-face, and that's good news. Alonso was on the pace for the whole race [in Valencia], and they (Red Bull) had to push hard. I did wonder how much was due to the street circuit, so I think at Silverstone we will see things clearer.

“Will Vettel be champion? That kind of talk is premature. He is three race wins ahead of Button, so it's clear that his dominance is overwhelming. At other times, though, they've experienced difficult situations. I don't think Ferrari will give up. We must continue to develop. They are not champions yet, and to see them as such would be a mistake.”



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
26.06.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 race winner
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26.06.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 race winner
26.06.2011- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP), Scuderia Ferrari, F-150 Italia and Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7
26.06.2011- Press conference, Fernando Alonso (ESP), Scuderia Ferrari, F-150 Italia
26.06.2011- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP), Scuderia Ferrari, F-150 Italia
26.06.2011- Race, Sebastian Vettel (GER), Red Bull Racing, RB7 race winner and Fernando Alonso (ESP), Scuderia Ferrari, F-150 Italia 2nd position
26.06.2011- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP), Scuderia Ferrari, F-150 Italia
26.06.2011- Race, Fernando Alonso (ESP), Scuderia Ferrari, F-150 Italia
21.05.2011- Saturday Practice, Marc Gene (ESP), Test Driver Scuderia Ferrari
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Saturday Practice, Marc Gene (ESP), Test Driver Scuderia Ferrari
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devilsadvocate - Unregistered

June 30, 2011 5:19 PM

That my be true, and those are certainly cute lines from a reserve driver who knows there will most likely be an open seat next year, but here are some facts that people night not like. At 8 races in to the 2009 season button had 6 race wins a 3rd place ad 6th if I remember right. The field was showing much more competition as well since his closest threat at that point, Rubens, often followed him home in 2nd. He won that year by 9 points (almost a race win) despite only seeing the podium one more time before being crowned. Vettel now has 6 wins and 2 second places in a points system that is designed to reward wins and podiums above simply finishing in the points. He could check out for the next three races and even if webber or button won all of them he would still be in a better spot that he was last year, even then he won the championship.



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