Vettel's maiden championship triumph is remarkable for the fact he failed to lead at any stage other than after the final race, when it mattered most.
That season is in stark contrast to his steamroller campaign of last year when he led from start to finish, chalking up 10 wins and a record 15 poles in his all-conquering Red Bull.
This season is proving to be different again as Vettel has just one win to his name, leaving him 44 points behind championship leader Fernando Alonso in his Ferrari ahead of Sunday's Belgian Grand Prix.
Vettel knows, though, with nine races remaining it is all about the last man standing at the end of the campaign.
"The most important time to be leading the championship is after the last race, an experience we encountered in 2010," said Vettel.
"If you compare this year to any year, from my perspective, then 2010 is close.
"But in 2010 we made a lot more mistakes in the first half of the season, both myself and the team lost a lot more points than this year so far.
"This year only two races stand out where we should have scored more points.
"One was Valencia, which is obvious (alternator issue forced him out when leading), and the other Malaysia (where he collided with Narain Karthikeyan).
"It was a racing incident, so I've no regrets. These things happen. Sometimes you have a year where they don't happen.
"For some of the guys over the next nine races these things will happen, so we have to look after ourselves and be on top of our game - which is the lesson we learned in 2010."
Although Vettel believes he could - and should - have achieved more so far this season, he is convinced he will add to his one and only triumph to stay in the title hunt.
"Of course we would love to have won more, but unfortunately we did not use the chances we had here and there so far," added Vettel.
"In Bahrain we were able to win, but that we have not been able to win at other races is for different reasons.
"Still, there are more races, and I am confident we will be able to win at least one of them, or even more."