Vettel hails 'perfect car' after crushing Grand Prix victory

Sebastian Vettel today urged his mechanics to treat themselves to "pizza and beer" in the wake of his crushing Australian Grand Prix victory.

Vettel produced the drive of a world champion as the sport's youngest title holder did not put a wheel out of place before taking the chequered flag at Melbourne's Albert Park.



Unlike last year, when Vettel was forced to retire whilst in the lead and after starting from pole, on this occasion nothing untoward barred his path to success.



From the moment the five red lights disappeared to finally raise the curtain on the new campaign, the German was never troubled.



Vettel's margin of victory was a yawning 22 seconds to McLaren's Lewis Hamilton, who had earlier damaged his car in running wide at turn one.



That chasm is even more impressive when you consider he did not use KERS, the power boost system, due to issues earlier in the weekend.



When you now take the end of last season into consideration, Vettel has won the last three races, and four of the last five.



The 23-year-old appears unstoppable at present, but he said: "I don't really like the word dominant at this stage, to be honest, because there is a long, long way to go.



"Yes, the car was perfect, and all in all, I'm very, very happy. We've worked a lot of hours because it's not an easy car to work on.



"But it was a good race. In the end things calmed down and Lewis did not push as hard any more behind me, so I tried to control the last part.



"We've learned a lot of things, and we now need to move forwards from here."



Naturally paying tribute to his mechanics who have provided him with such a phenomenal car with which to start the season, Vettel believes they should all go out for a meal.



"Compliments to them because they've been working all week long up to this weekend," added Vettel.



"But I was joking with them yesterday, and now they can have pizza and beer! It's a nice reward."



Vettel was not the only jubilant driver on the podium as Hamilton was equally as ebullient in the wake of his runner-up spot that a fortnight ago was never on the cards.



But a new exhaust system and floor has swiftly turned a seemingly woeful situation on its head.



A delighted Hamilton said: "We can definitely take this and be very proud of ourselves.



"The guys have done a great job coming into this weekend. A week or two ago we were not expecting to be anywhere near the top five.



"So to come away with second, with the car reliable, the longest it has lasted, is a great achievement for us.



"Generally we've very good pace and I'm looking forward to the next race.



"The car handled great, the guys have done a great job. This is a great platform for us to push on."



After an equally disruptive winter for Renault, not least in light of Robert Kubica's horrific rallying accident, Vitaly Petrov was a stunning third to lift the spirits of his team.



Petrov was almost speechless as he joined Vettel and Hamilton in the post-race press conference as the Russian said: "I can't believe I'm sitting here with these guys.



"We didn't know where we were coming into the season, but in practice and qualifying we were good.



"In the race the team did everything perfectly. We can be very proud of what we have achieved.



"After the winter we had, I'm delighted to be here."



On three-stop strategies, Fernando Alonso was fourth for Ferrari, followed by Mark Webber in his Red Bull.



On home soil the Australian was again unable to finish any higher than fifth, with this being the third occasion he has found himself in such a position.



After a battle royal with Felipe Massa early on, Jenson Button was sixth in his McLaren, the Briton earning a drive-through penalty for cutting a corner when dicing with the Brazilian.



In a remarkable post-race development, Sauber duo rookie Sergio Perez and team-mate Kamui Kobayashi were both excluded from the race results due to what the FIA described as a technical infringement, believed to relate to the rear wing.



Perez and Kobayashi had finished seventh and eighth, but those two spots are now taken up by Massa and Toro Rosso's Sebastien Buemi.



The FIA's decision means Scotland's Paul di Resta takes a point on his debut with Force India for 10th place, finishing behind team-mate Adrian Sutil.

Life and Style
A monstrous idea? Body transplants might no longer be science fiction
Science An Italian neurosurgeon believes so - and it's not quite as implausible as it sounds, says Steve Connor
Sport
Demba Ba (right) celebrates after Besiktas win on penalties
footballThere was no happy return to the Ataturk Stadium, where the Reds famously won Champions League
Arts and Entertainment
Natural beauty: Aidan Turner stars in the new series of Poldark
arts + ents
News
Mia Freedman, editorial director of the Mamamia website, reads out a tweet she was sent.
arts + ents
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
people
Arts and Entertainment
The write stuff: masters of story-telling James Joyce, left, and Thomas Hardy
arts + ents...begging to differ, John Walsh can't even begin to number the ways
Sport
Jose Mourinho on Sky Sports
footballEXCLUSIVE COLUMN Paul Scholes: It was not a leg-breaking tackle, as the Chelsea manager had claimed
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

HIV pill: Scientists hail discovery of 'game-changer' that cuts the risk of infection among gay men by 86%

Scientists hail daily pill that protects against HIV infection

Breakthrough in battle against global scourge – but will the NHS pay for it?
How we must adjust our lifestyles to nature: Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch

Time to play God

Welcome to the 'Anthropocene', the human epoch where we may need to redefine nature itself
MacGyver returns, but with a difference: Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman

MacGyver returns, but with a difference

Handyman hero of classic 1980s TV series to be recast as a woman
Tunnel renaissance: Why cities are hiding roads down in the ground

Tunnel renaissance

Why cities are hiding roads underground
'Backstreet Boys - Show 'Em What You're Made Of': An affectionate look at five middle-aged men

Boys to men

The Backstreet Boys might be middle-aged, married and have dodgy knees, but a heartfelt documentary reveals they’re not going gently into pop’s good night
Crufts 2015: Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?

Crufts 2015

Should foreign dogs be allowed to compete?
10 best projectors

How to make your home cinema more cinematic: 10 best projectors

Want to recreate the big-screen experience in your sitting room? IndyBest sizes up gadgets to form your film-watching
Manchester City 1 Barcelona 2 player ratings: Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man?

Manchester City vs Barcelona player ratings

Luis Suarez? Lionel Messi? Joe Hart? Who was the star man at the Etihad?
Arsenal vs Monaco: Monaco - the making of Gunners' manager Arsene Wenger

Monaco: the making of Wenger

Jack Pitt-Brooke speaks to former players and learns the Frenchman’s man-management has always been one of his best skills
Cricket World Cup 2015: Chris Gayle - the West Indies' enigma lives up to his reputation

Chris Gayle: The West Indies' enigma

Some said the game's eternal rebel was washed up. As ever, he proved he writes the scripts by producing a blistering World Cup innings
In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare and murky loyalties prevails

In Ukraine a dark world of hybrid warfare

This war in the shadows has been going on since the fall of Mr Yanukovych
'Birdman' and 'Bullets Over Broadway': Homage or plagiarism?

Homage or plagiarism?

'Birdman' shares much DNA with Woody Allen's 'Bullets Over Broadway'
Broadchurch ends as damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

A damp squib not even David Tennant can revive

Broadchurch, Series 2 finale, review
A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower: inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

Inside the mansion of Germany's 'Bishop of Bling'

A Koi carp breeding pond, wall-mounted iPads and a bathroom with a 'wellness' shower