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F1 – Japanese Grand Prix: Vettel, World Champion with Pirelli

Sport Published the 13/10/2011 by Jack

He’s done it: 24-year-old Sebastien Vettel (Red Bull) has become the youngest double champion in Formula 1 history. He also joins an exclusive club of drivers to be crowned on Pirelli tyres. This is a highly symbolic victory for the Italian tyre manufacturer who proudly celebrated the event.

Japanese Grand Prix 2011 Copyright © : Pirelli

The Japanese Grand Prix was uppermost in everyone’s mind. First of all, from a technical standpoint. With its figure-of-eight layout and its string of fast corners, there was every reason to believe that high stresses would be placed on the Pirelli tyres. And indeed, this was the case.

The other question was whether Sebastian Vettel was going to win his second World Champion title. There was no suspense: With his third place, the young driver marked the point he needed to clinch the title.  And now, at only 24, Vettel is Formula 1 World Champion for the second time.

With Vettel’s title, Pirelli is back on top, re-living some of its finest moments in the competition’s history. Back in the 1950’s, the Italian firm fitted the cars driven by Giusepe Farina, Alberto Ascari and the great Fangio, all three world champions.

Extremely satisfied with this win Paul Hembery, Pirelli’s motorsport director, congratulated the “unstoppable” Sebastian Vettel on his title and Jenson Button for his "well deserved victory against very tough competition”. The Pirelli boss was happy with the tyres at Suzuka: “The tyres stood up well to an extremely demanding circuit.”

Once again, tyre strategy was the key to success on this circuit where lateral loads were particularly high and the abrasive nature of the asphalt accelerated tyre wear. Most drivers came in for two or three pit stops during the race.

The next Championship race : The Korean Grand Prix to be held on October 16th.