SPORT Ve el puts Sin­ga­pore crash be­hind him to fo­cus on Malaysia


The Myanmar Times - Weekend - - Sport - SPORT 22 SEPTEM­BER 29, 2017

SE­BAS­TIAN Vettel is wast­ing no en­ergy in his ti­tle fight with Lewis Hamilton.

After blow­ing pole po­si­tion by caus­ing a crash at the Sin­ga­pore GP two weeks ago, the Ferrari driver threw away a golden chance to re­gain the cham­pi­onship lead from Lewis Hamilton.

It put him 28 points be­hind Hamilton with six races to go, start­ing with this week­end’s Malaysian Grand Prix. But speak­ing yes­ter­day, Vettel said he has al­ready cast it from his mind.

“I’m not too fussed about the amount of points. It doesn’t change any­thing for how we tackle the last races,” Vettel said. “It’s part of rac­ing. Not much point look­ing at it over and over again, your en­ergy is best spent look­ing for­ward.”

Vettel said he “moved on” within two days of the in­ci­dent. How­ever, he does con­cede that the last two races in Italy — where he fin­ished third — and Sin­ga­pore were be­low par for a team of Ferrari’s high stan­dards.

“If you look at the last two races, we’re not happy and we’re not proud of them,” said Vettel, who has won four times in Malaysia.

Mercedes has the up­per hand and Vettel’s mar­gin for er­ror is in­creas­ingly small. He can ill af­ford an­other blip in Malaysia, where the in­tense heat and sti­fling hu­mid­ity make it one of For­mula One’s tough­est races.

“They are tak­ing away the tough­est, if not the tough­est race of the sea­son,” Hamilton said. “It is sad to think this is our last race at Sepang.”

Nei­ther Vettel nor Hamilton have fond mem­o­ries of last year, how­ever, with both fail­ing to fin­ish the race as Red Bull clinched a 1-2 with Ric­cia­rdo hold­ing off Max Ver­stap­pen.

Vettel could use a help­ing hand from Red Bull now.

Red Bull has been im­prov­ing in re­cent weeks and looked strong in Sin­ga­pore qual­i­fy­ing, plac­ing both cars ahead of Hamilton and Bot­tas.

Ric­cia­rdo ap­pears par­tic­u­larly strong, with his sec­ond-place fin­ish in Sin­ga­pore earn­ing him a sev­enth podium po­si­tion in the past 10 races.

– AP

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