While F1's driver and constructor championships may already have been decided heading into the penultimate round of the season at Austin's magnificent Circuit of the Americas, there is plenty left for Sebastian Vettel and the rest of the grid to fight for.

While the German chases his eighth consecutive win - and twelfth in all from 2013 - there are two drivers for whom next weekend's race means even more than most.

McLaren's Sergio P?rez and Sauber rookie Esteban Guti?rrez may not be Texans, but are anticipating a lot of 'local' support in one of the largest states in the union. While a Mexican Grand Prix is provisionally pencilled in on next year's F1 calendar, it is by no means confirmed, so the race weekend in Austin acts as a de facto home race for both drivers.

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With its close location to their home country and the large Mexican contingent living and working in and around Austin, last year's inaugural race saw a huge turn-out of fans bedecked in red, white and green to support P?rez, who was at that time driving for Sauber.

"It was great to see so many Mexican fans and receive so much support last year, it really was one of the most special weekends of my career," he reminisces, "It is already a track I look forward to more than others as it so special to myself and the people of Mexico. I was so impressed with the amount of Mexicans there, especially when you consider it is not an actual Mexican race and they had to spend so much money to get there."

This year, Perez is joined by the impressive rookie, Esteban Guti?rrez, his replacement at Sauber, which will provide the Mexican fan-base with even more reason to take over the Circuit of The Americas. Coming to the end of his first season in F1, Guti?rrez is especially excited to race in Austin, having been present but not part of last year's grand prix.

"Because now there are two Mexican F1 drivers, we can expect to have a lot of Mexican supporters again," the youngster added, "I'm from Monterrey, which is quite close to Austin, about one and a half to two hours away, so my family and also a lot of my friends will come to the event."

Aside from welcoming the expected Mexican support, both drivers are highly positive about the track, considering it a great addition to the F1 season. While P?rez acknowledges he endured a tough time at last year's race- "I had problems with the brakes, came close to retiring and ended up finishing eleventh" - he is full of praise for the track itself, proclaiming the circuit's layout to be "really nice, it is very popular among all the drivers and is very good to drive - especially for overtaking!".

Guti?rrez is equally effusive, declaring it "a very complex layout, particularly the first sector, which is really quite interesting".

"It is very quick, a bit like Silverstone," he explained, "They basically took the drivers' favourite parts of other tracks and combined it into one. I think this makes it a very attractive layout and I am looking forward to getting to know it."

When considering the success of last year's race, both drivers agree that, although they had high hopes, they were still very surprised at the unequivocal success it turned out to be.

"Usually, when it's the first year of a GP, you don't expect a good atmosphere," Gutierrez noted, "When we first came to some of the new tracks, the atmosphere developed over the years as people started to get to know the sport and got excited about it. That was why I was surprised [by CotA's success]. I really enjoyed attending the event as test and reserve driver last year and now I am excited to be there as an F1 driver."

It is not just the circuit that won over both drivers last year, as the city of Austin itself also stuck in the memory. Considered one of the most unique and exciting cities in the United States, Austin has quickly established itself as a must-visit destination for F1 teams, drivers and fans alike.

"I really liked it," Perez commented, "It is close to home for me and it is such a great place to race. I went for some great meals but, unfortunately, I had to travel to Sao Paolo straight after so I didn't get to see as much as I would have liked. Hopefully, this year, I will get to see more!"

Guti?rrez is also excited at returning to the Texan state capital, noting in particular the city's unique look and feel.

"In the US, you have a lot of cities that look a lot alike," he pointed out, "The architecture is often very similar. However, Austin has been preserved nicely from the past and you can really see the culture there."

As for their actual hopes for this year's race, both drivers are hopeful of a strong finish.

"I think it will be very similar to last couple of races," P?rez reasons, "Hopefully we can perform as well as we did in India. I am hopeful we can do really well in Austin."

"Looking at the last few races, our pace has been very good on different track layouts," Gutierrez countered, "The team is confident that Austin won't be any different and that we are able to get a good result. My personal expectations are to score points in front of a big Mexican crowd. I want to entertain them and give them a reason to celebrate."

One thing is for sure, should either Sergio P?rez or Esteban Guti?rrez have reason to celebrate in Austin, Texas, they won't be alone.