Formula 1 News

Racing deaths overshadow Vettel win

"Mixed emotions" is how the German described his feelings after the race. Before the action started, a one minute of silence tribute took place.
Sunday, October 30, 2011

GREATER NOIDA, India, Oct 30, 2011 (AFP) - Red Bull's Sebastian Vettel admitted he had "mixed emotions" about his emphatic Indian Grand Prix victory on Sunday after two tragic deaths left motorsports in mourning.

India's Formula One debut started with a solemn minute's silence, and several drivers wore tributes to IndyCar's Dan Wheldon and MotoGP rider Marco Simoncelli, who both died in races this month.

Vettel took time out from his celebrations to remember the two, whose deaths gave drivers a stark reminder of the risks involved in their sport.

"For everyone who is a fan of motorsports it's been a hard time we had to go through," he said.

"On one hand I'm very happy and proud... but on the other hand you have to pay a certain respect to those two guys who lost their lives and our thoughts are with them, especially with their families.

"We should never forget those two very young, committed race drivers." 

McLaren's Jenson Button, a rival of Wheldon's from the age of eight when they were both racing go-karts, dedicated the event to the memory of the two racers.

"It's been a tough weekend for everyone in motorsport," said the Briton, who wore a black armband. "It's been very, very difficult especially with Dan.

"I think we should dedicate this first Indian race to Dan and also to Marco, another super-talented youngster who was the most amazing guy to watch on a bike."

Wheldon died in a fiery, multi-car pile-up on October 16, before Simoncelli veered into the path of two rivals at Malaysia's Sepang circuit a week later.

"You pray that every time nothing happens but sometimes you get reminded, and it's the last thing you want to see," Vettel said. "It's a bit mixed emotions and our thoughts are with them at this moment."

Vettel, who has already sealed the championship, won his 11th victory of the season with Button second and Ferrari's Fernando Alonso third.

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