Sebastian Vettel and his Red Bull team collected their FIA world championship trophies in Turkey on Friday night – with boss Christian Horner adamant his outfit was better this year than it has ever been.
Vettel was presented with the F1 world drivers’ championship trophy, and Horner the constructors’ award, by FIA president Jean Todt at the organisation’s prize gala in Istanbul.
Reflecting on the campaign, Vettel and Horner did not hide from the fact that the season has been incredibly challenging as rivals Ferrari took the title fight all the way to the final round of the season in Brazil.
Horner said: “This is a phenomenal achievement for our team. The hard work and the dedication this year have been exemplary – but I think hard work and dedication have been common up and down the pit lane in this fantastic Formula 1 season.
“It didn’t seem possible we could raise our game after last year but I think we have.
“The team have used every scrap of their skill and ingenuity; they’ve had the courage of their convictions and have refused to buckle under the most enormous pressure. I’m honoured to collect this trophy on their behalf.”
Vettel also praised the efforts of his team – which fought back from a major points deficit in the middle of the season to secure the drivers’ title by just three points.
“Winning the title with Red Bull Racing three times in a row makes us all feel very proud,” said the German.
“This was a season with lots of ups and downs and the team had to push hard to get me over the line. In the garage and at the factory everyone did an incredible job, and the support we had from Renault was also great.”
Indian Grand Prix organisers were meanwhile presented with Bernie Ecclestone’s Formula 1 Promotional Trophy for the best race, while Sky Sports were awarded the accolade for outstanding television broadcast coverage.