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Korean Grand Prix

Race Review: Korean Grand Prix

Fernando Alonso and Sebastian Vettel at the driver's press conference following the Korean GP (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

// Korea

The writing is on the wall. The 2012 WDC is now down to a two-horse race after the Korean Grand Prix. Vettel and Alonso are now the frontrunners and will battle it out in the final four races for the title. Raikkonen, Hamilton, Webber and Button are now trailing far behind in terms of points, wondering what could have been and knowing what will never be.

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Korean Grand Prix Recap

Upon wrapping up their second consecutive world championship title with three races remaining in the season, most drivers probably wouldn’t be racing the rest of the field so hard that they look like they’re still competing for the title.  One would also think that such a driver starting second on the grid Sunday will surely drive a bit more conservatively this weekend, trying to avoid the mayhem that inevitably ensues on the first lap while the drivers try to find their place.  But then, most drivers aren’t Sebastian Vettel of Red Bull Renault.

About midway through the first lap, Vettel had already attempted two passing maneuvers on pole sitter McLaren-Mercedes’ Lewis Hamilton - the second which paid off – and then opened a full 1-second gap at the start of lap 2.  By the end of the race he finished 12 seconds clear of 2nd place Hamilton, who struggled most of the race to keep at bay Vettel’s teammate, a quicker Mark Webber.  This battle for 2nd place was probably the most interesting one on the Sebastian Vettel took his rightful spot at the front of the pack mid-way through lap 1. (Photo courtesy of Getty Images)track and resulted in Hamilton finished a mere 0.4 seconds in front of 3rd place Webber, who could not make a couple of passes on track stick.  The gutsy wheel-to-wheel driving didn’t stop there however, as McLaren-Mercedes’ other driver Jenson Button spent most of his race clawing his way back up to a 4th place finish, equaling his starting position on the grid.  He also spent much of the last half of the race fending off Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso, who finished 1 second behind.  Alonso’s teammate Felipe Massa finished 6th.  Red Bull’s 1st and 3rd place finishes were also enough this weekend to secure their second consecutive constructors championship.