Christian Horner says that Red Bull Racing can still get better as it learns lessons from a tough 2012 season.
The Red Bull boss said the team’s ambition is its strength.
“This team has not been around too long and we’ve achieved a great deal in a very short period of time,” said Horner. “Sebastian now joins a list of elite drivers that are triple World Champions, and the team joins an elite group of only three other teams that have achieved three consecutive constructors’ World Championships. It’s a phenomenal achievement and one that we’re all incredibly proud of.
“I think we’ve got such a strong group, but you can always learn. We’ve learned a lot of lessons from this year, and we’ll look to apply them. One of the strengths of this team is that we’re never satisfied.
“We’ll always look inwards, whether that’s the drivers, whether that’s the engineers, whether’ that’s technicians, whether it’s people in production – in all the different departments, where we can we improve, what can we learn. I think it’s that spirit and that desire which has kept us at the top for three years.
“We were restrained last week because we felt the job was only half done. It’s been a tough weekend but everybody’s kept their focus, held their nerve. Then what we were faced with today could not have been more stressful.
“It’s not just about today, it’s about the season as a whole, the 20 races, the way this championship has ebbed and flowed. We’ve fought our way back into it, and Sebastian in particular has never given up.”
Horner was full of praise for Vettel.
“He really wanted this championship, he’s driven with great determination. It doesn’t ever get any easier. I have to congratulate Fernando Alonso, he’s been a formidable opponent. He’s pushed us all the way, and at one stage we looked like we were out of the championship, But we fought back and fought back delivered what we need to in the end here in what couldn’t have been a more mixed and stressful race.”
Asked by this writer about Vettel’s accusation of ‘dirty tricks,’ he said: “It’s been a tough competition. F1 is a tough business, and you’re up against some big opponents. The fastest way to become unpopular is to have repeated success. We’ve ignored what other teams are doing and just really focussed on ourselves.”