Vettel bids to tame Marina Bay circuit

Sebastian Vettel will attempt to tame a 'killer' circuit for the third straight year and move step closer to becoming a four-time Formula One world champion.

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull

After back-to-back wins in Belgium and Italy since the resumption of the season after the summer break, Vettel is in a commanding position heading into Sunday's Singapore Grand Prix.

The 26-year-old German holds a 53-point cushion to his nearest rival in Ferrari's Fernando Alonso, with Mercedes' Lewis Hamilton and Kimi Raikkonen in his Lotus 81 and 88 points adrift respectively.

It appears misfortune represents Vettel's sole obstacle to greatness as only Juan Manuel Fangio and Michael Schumacher have previously won four titles in a row.

And after victories around the Marina Bay Street Circuit in 2011 and again last year, he is understandably a clear favourite to make it three in a row.

Vettel, however, is refusing to take his comfortable position for granted as he said: "I am not really thinking about the points situation.

"Obviously, we are in a very good position, but I am just thinking about Singapore.

"I am trying to keep focused because in order to stay at the top of our game it is important to focus. A lot of things have to go right for us to have success.

"We're not thinking about what might happen in six or seven races, just the next one."

Whilst Vettel has undeniably mastered F1's only night grand prix, it has proven to be a lottery in the past, as the five races to date have yielded a remarkable total of eight safety car periods.

Furthermore, at two hours long and run in high heat and humidity, it can have a draining effect on the driver who also has to contend with the very bumpy nature of the track itself.

No wonder Vettel rates his wins so highly, adding: "It's one of the toughest races of the year to be honest, so to win is an amazing moment. You feel you deserve the champagne!

"It's a very long race, the full two hours, so it just seems to go on forever, and the circuit itself is a killer because there are so many bumps. There's no room for mistakes."

It was from this race onwards last year Vettel turned the tables on Alonso as the Spaniard held a reasonable advantage over his rival.

But a run of four straight wins allowed Vettel to overhaul Alonso and go on to complete a hat-trick of championships.

After the victories at the high-speed theatres of Spa and Monza, which have previously been Red Bull's Achilles heel, the team appears to have a car for all circuits.

When it was suggested to team principal Christian Horner that from Singapore onwards the remaining tracks should be good for Red Bull, he replied: "Hopefully.

"Our target is to be strong everywhere. Part of our strength this year has been the consistency we've had across different types of circuit.

"We've won on high-downforce and low-downforce circuits, with our performance on the latter really gratifying.

"This year we've won in Montreal, Bahrain, Spa and now Monza, which are all relatively low-downforce configurations.

"So we are looking forward to the upcoming races. It's obviously a busy schedule between now and the end of the year, and Singapore is the toughest race on the calendar.

"But we've had a good run in Singapore in previous years, so hopefully we can go there and do the same."



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