Former F1 champion Niki Lauda has said that Sebastian Vettel has the potential to be more successful in the sport than Michael Schumacher after the Red Bull driver secured his second title in Japan.
A podium finish at Suzuka was enough to wrap up a second straight crown for the young German, who is now the youngest driver to have two F1 titles to his name after beating the record previously held by Fernando Alonso.
Despite that success, Vettel still has some way to go to surpass Schumacher's record of seven titles and 91 race victories but Lauda said there was no reason why the Red Bull man couldn't emulate his countryman.
"He has all the circumstances to do it,” he told Reuters
. “If the car and his career and where he drives and which car continues in the right direction, then yes.
"If you choose the wrong car or the car you are driving doesn't work, then you can't win because its always the combination of the two. But he certainly theoretically can win more than Schumacher if he sits at the right time in the right car because he himself is certainly capable of it."
Lauda added that Vettel's performance in taking two titles at just 24-years-old was one of the best he has seen in the sport.
"It is the best performance so far in Formula One, at his age to win two (titles)," he said. "To win the first one is always the most difficult because all your career, starting from go-karts all the way up, is years and years of work for this particular day. The second one is easier in a way because there is less pressure.
"He [Vettel] is this kind of person, every lap he is doing and every race he is doing he wants to get quicker and quicker.”