Mike Stevens | May 26, 2010

SEBASTIAN VETTEL insists he is happy that his "main opponent" at present is his own teammate Mark Webber.

The Red Bull pair are tied for points at the top of the Drivers' World Championship, after 33-year-old Australian Webber dominated the last two Grands Prix from pole.

"At the moment my main opponent is Mark and that is a good thing," German Vettel is quoted by Sport Bild.

However, other reports have indicated that the young German is far from happy about his recent struggle to keep up with Webber, even though team boss Christian Horner insists Vettel should be relaxed and confident.

"Sebastian will win many races this season," Horner said.

Ferrari's Felipe Massa is regarded as a specialist of the Istanbul circuit, but last year it was Vettel who was on pole, after dominating all three segments of qualifying.

He ultimately made a mistake and finished behind winner Jenson Button and Webber, but Vettel now insists: "I like the track and I am going there to win."

(GMM)

 

Lotus Designing 2011 Car Without KERS

LOTUS WILL NOT run a KERS system in 2011, despite the expected return to the grid of the energy-recovery technology for next year.

Multiple sources are reporting that KERS will be back in Formula One in 2011, but the new team Lotus has begun designing its next car with no plans to incorporate the boost-button concept.

"We will not use KERS next year and we have good reasons for this decision," team boss Tony Fernandes is quoted by Finland's Turun Sanomat.

"This year we had to buy nearly all the (car) parts from other suppliers but now we are in a position to build the entire car in our factory," he said.

"So we are trying to take advantage of the experience we have collected with the current car and to make the project more effective.

"If we were to have KERS, in accordance with the technical working group (decision), we would have to start everything again from zero in terms of weight distribution.

"The big teams are in a different boat, already with solid experience of KERS from recent years.

"What we saw last season is that it is not easy to get KERS to operate effectively and reliably; it took a lot of time, money and resources. At Lotus we are fully confident that we are going to cope without it (KERS)," Fernandes added.

Currently, FOTA's technical group is finalising the details of the KERS return, with Ferrari and Renault pushing for a 150 horsepower boost for 10 seconds each lap.

In 2009, the boost was about 80 horsepower for less than seven seconds.

It is likely that KERS will remain voluntary in 2011 and 2012 until a new engine formula debuts in 2013.

It is expected the return of KERS will be approved formally by the teams this weekend in Turkey, before the matter is referred to the FIA for inclusion in the technical regulations.

(GMM)

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