Triple world champion Niki Lauda has hailed Sebastian Vettel for refusing to follow his example.
Writing in the Swiss newspaper Blick, the red-capped Austrian great revealed that with Vettel’s 100-point lead at Monza recently, he would not have driven so attacking a race.
Referring to the German’s overtaking pass on Fernando Alonso en route to victory, Lauda said: “Any other driver would have tackled this race strategically with the championship standings constantly in mind.
“‘Many points without risk’ — that is the all-too-logical motto that I have used in similar situations,” added the 62-year-old.
“But, no, Vettel has proved with his killer instinct and aggressiveness that he is a true racer, not a points-hoarder.”
Whether Vettel can or is prepared to go wheel-to-wheel with his rivals has been, for some, the final question mark over the Red Bull driver’s talents.
The team’s Helmut Marko insists Monza was a “masterpiece” and that Vettel is prepared to keep attacking in 2011 rather than cruise and collect.
And the same is true of Red Bull, he added. “Driving safe races is not our philosophy. We are always on full attack and new parts are already going out to Singapore,” Marko told F1’s official website.