top-nav-left top-nav-right

Article Search


New Formula 1 champion for 2010


Sebastian Vetel became the youngest ever Formula One champion when he won the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix on Sunday

The 23-year-old Red Bull driver from Germany started the race from pole position but needed to make up 15 points on points leader Fernando Alonso.

Alonso finished seventh after Ferrari decided to pit early and the Spaniard got stuck behind Nico Rosberg and Vitaly Petrov for nearly 40 laps. He finished four points behind Vettel in the final standings.

Vettel said he had a few nervous moments after crossing the finish line on Sunday, while he waited to see whether Alonso could climb up to fourth place on the last lap - which would have given the Spaniard the title.

But the celebrations started when he received the message he was hoping for.

"Weltmeister!" Vettel's team screamed over the car radio after Rosberg crossed the line in fourth place, using the German word for world champion.

"Unbelievable! Thank you," Vettel replied with plenty of emotion.

Alonso couldn't hide his disappointment, shaking his fist as he pulled up alongside Petrov when they crossed the line.

"Next year, we'll try again," Alonso said.

Red Bull's Mark Webber of Australia came in behind Alonso and finished third overall, 14 points back from his teammate Vettel.

Vettel was born July 3, 1987, making him six months younger than Lewis Hamilton was when he won the title in 2008.

Hamilton beat defending champion Jenson Button as McLaren took second and third place in the race.

Hamilton finished 16 points behind Vettel in fourth overall.

Auto Trader New Zealand