F1: Vettel still eyeing second in 2015 championship

Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Ferrari attends a press conference during previews for the Formula One Grand Prix of Brazil at Autodromo Jose Carlos Pace on Nov. 12, 2015 in Sao Paulo, Brazil.

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Sebastian Vettel says he hasn’t given up on second place in the 2015 championship, despite a costly non-score in Mexico.

After his crash in that race, he now lies 21 points behind Nico Rosberg, but says he has to set a target of beating his fellow German.

“Obviously there’s two races to go,” he said on Thursday. “The last one didn’t help but for sure, as long as it’s possible to finish second you want to finish second rather than third, so clearly our target is to at least try and split the Mercedes and split them the right way. But the best way to do that or the best recipe is to just do our job and try to achieve the maximum and then we will see what happens on Sunday.”

Meanwhile, Vettel is confident that Ferrari will raise its game further in 2016.

“Well, it’s always difficult to predict what’s going to happen but surely it is our target. Surely I can see what’s happening in the background, the work that has gone into this year, the work that is going into next year back in the factory, back in Maranello with all the people, so it looks promising and I think we should be able to make a good step forward.

“Now, obviously the most important day is when you put the new car on the track and you see what it does – but that’s still a bit far away. For now I think we have two races left and we want to do well and ideally get the best possible results here and in Abu Dhabi.”

Vettel denies Niki Lauda’s recent suggestion that Ferrari’s power unit is a match for Mercedes.

“Well, as a fact we are not yet a match otherwise this season would have been very different but I’m very happy, as I said, with the season so far, with the progress we’ve made and also with the things that I think we have in the pipeline for the future.

“Now Niki is usually not the best one to trust, let’s put it this way, he’s changing his opinion very quickly, and sometimes what he says makes sense and other times it doesn’t make any sense. So yeah, the more he’s talking about us the better it is for us because he can feel that maybe we’re coming, so hopefully that’s good news.”

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