Sebastian Vettel has his admirers and has also been booed by fans at some Grands Prix for his unchallenged dominance this year.
The 26-year-old German has insulated himself from all this, remaining focused on the job of achieving a rare piece of Formula One history at the Indian Grand Prix.
During his interaction at the BIC on Thursday, Vettel fielded questions on the prospects of his being crowned champion for the fourth consecutive time, and becoming only the third F1 driver to achieve the feat.
“I am going into the weekend not expecting anything. Officially, there is some sort of expectation, we have a competitive package and that is why I expect to be competitive. You cannot expect to win or think about further reaction,” said Vettel.
“It is nice to have the opportunity (to win the title for the fourth time in a row), but I am not trying to focus on that. I am trying to focus on the race. The most important thing is that we win the championship. It does not really matter where and when.”
For some, Vettel and Red Bull’s absolute dominance over the last three years might seem a little boring, but the champion said he took pride in their unrelenting performances; his team also eyeing its fourth successive constructors’ championship.
“It is something very special, so it does not make sense talking about it beforehand because you just take away the excitement,” he said.
Vettel also spoke about his fierce rivalry with teammate Mark Webber. “Nothing has changed there. I think he tried to give tough competition in the years he has been with the team. But next year he is not there in Formula One any more. So, that will change,” he said.
Vettel also expressed his special feelings for the Indian GP, and sounded optimistic about the return of the race to the F1 calendar. “We like the track here, and we like coming here as it is different country. It is a shame that we lose India next year.
“In terms of paperwork, it is a quite a bit of relief because there is quite a lot of stuff to be done beforehand (for FI to arrive in India).
“The track is very modern, more or less brand new still. We will come back for sure,” he said.