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Vettel ready to land knockout blow in F1 title race

by Reuters Photos: DPPI Posted on 07 Nov 2012 273 Views

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With only ten points between Sebastian Vettel and Fernando Alonso in the championship, the bets are on for the United States Grand Prix in Austin, Texas

 

sebastian vettel

 

The knockout blow in the Formula One title battle has yet to be thrown but the moment is fast approaching and Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel is landing the big psychological hits.

 

Sunday's floodlit Abu Dhabi Grand Prix was a standout chance for Ferrari's Fernando Alonso to recapture the lead in the drivers' standings with two races to go but, even if he beat Vettel for the first time in six races, it remained an opportunity missed.

 

Vettel is 10 points clear of the Spaniard and can win his third title in a row at the new Austin track in Texas next week. The pressure now is on Alonso to stop him.

 

The manner in which Vettel surged from last of all, starting in the pit lane, to finish third and one place behind his sole title rival was a perfect example of damage limitation and determination.

 

It was also supremely demoralising for Ferrari. "To anyone that doubted he's a racer, I think he showed world class," said team principal Christian Horner. "To go from pit lane to podium was phenomenal."

 

Austin will be Vettel's 100th race and his Red Bull team look likely to celebrate their third constructors' crown in a row in what is the parent company's biggest market for sales of their energy drink.

 

Alonso, one of the mentally toughest of opponents, tried to stay optimistic when he told reporters that he would go to bed "thinking the glass is half full rather than half empty" but Sunday's outcome must have hurt.

 

The Ferrari driver can draw strength from the knowledge that he will become the triple champion if he wins the last two races, wherever Vettel finishes.

 

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