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Through personal family connections to money he jumped the queue ahead of vastly more talented drivers in Australian karting and Formula Ford in the 90's. He wasn't even in Australia's top 50 karters. Nobody even knew who he was, as dozens of better talents were winning the Titles.
When he started placing ads in local motorsport magazines in the 90s suggesting that he would be australia's next F1 driver everyone thought he was a Wayne Kerr. True - the joke ultimately proved to be on the drivers with talent when this chump actually did make it to F1 - but all this means is that it proved to many that F1 is actually not the result of a talent filtering system of international motorsport but merely a capital filtering system. Too bad - there were 10 to 20 karters in australia in the 90s who could be pushing Vettel hard right now - but they are working day jobs now because they didn't have family connections to money. F1 is meaningless - just an indulgence for the well-heeled.