Vettel celebrating at the podium.
BARCELONA, Spain, May 22, 2011 (AFP) - Red Bull's English team chief Christian Horner paid rich tribute to his young world champion Sebastian Vettel after he had grabbed the 13th win of his career in Sunday's Spanish
Horner said his 23-year-old German driver's performance had been 'fantastic' as he defended his leading position against attack from Briton Lewis Hamilton, 26, the 2008 champion, in his McLaren.
"That was fantastic by Seb. A truly great drive," said Horner."It was a full-on race. Fernando (Alonso) changed the dynamics of the race completely by getting into lead. He did not have fantastic pace, but it was very hard to overtake.
"We managed to get Seb past with the undercut and he made that really work for him and hang on.
"McLaren gave us a tough run today. The race is a different challenge [to qualifying] and these tyres you have to nurse through different stages of the race. At one stage we were considering a five-stop!
"It's a matter of managing the tyre and not abusing the tyre, but in saying that McLaren pushed us pretty hard with Lewis today and they were a big margin ahead of the rest.
"It was fantastic from Seb, the DRS is pretty powerful on this long straight here and he had limited use of the system into the last third of the race.
"In the first couple of sectors he could pull out a bit, but Lewis could just stay within that DRS zone. Seb just had enough in hand to make sure Lewis never got close enough to have a serious challenge. A great race."
Vettel has now won four of five races this year and has a clear lead in the drivers world championship.