(Inautonews.com/GMM) He had a long face on the Montreal podium but Sebastian Vettel might still be cruising to the 2011 title.
The Red Bull driver was gutted after handing his Canadian grand prix lead to McLaren’s Jenson Button almost within sight of the chequered flag.
“If you have got it in your hands and you give it away, it’s not the sweetest feeling,” admitted the German.
But in actual fact, because his closest challenger Lewis Hamilton did not finish, Vettel actually extended his championship lead in Canada,
now over the sister McLaren.
“Vettel is only counting down the time before his new world championship comes,” wrote Italy’s Tuttosport, while Marca said the outcome in 2011 is “practically decided”.
Agreed Joan Villadelprat in his El Pais column: “Make no mistake, the Red Bull is still the best car and Vettel extended in Canada. I’m guessing it’s going to be very difficult to beat him in the coming races.”
Red Bull, meanwhile, said all weekend that Canada is perhaps its “weakest” race of the season with the RB7.
“He should not be too disappointed,” said boss Christian Horner afterwards.
Der Spiegel quotes Vettel as agreeing: “It’s annoying to lose a race because of a moment of distraction just before the finish.
“But when I look at the world championship standings after the seventh race, I am quite satisfied.”
Long-time McLaren team boss Ron Dennis, however, said before leaving Canada that the race had proved “Vettel is not invincible”.
And the RB7’s dominance might be affected by the forthcoming restrictions on blown exhausts.
“The rule changes are going to spice things up,” Lewis Hamilton predicted, according to The Independent.
In the Telegraph, Montreal winner Button agreed: “There’s a lot happening this year in terms of the regulations. It could go our way, it might not. We’ll have to see.”