Vettel: No alarm over Red Bull pace (VIDEO)

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Sebastian Vettel says he isn’t concerned about Red Bull’s performance despite a disappointing result in the first race of the season.

Vettel put his Red Bull RB9 on pole position for the Australian Grand Prix but fell to third place at the checkered flag. He was over 22 seconds behind winner Kimi Raikkonen.

“I don’t think you can take this race as a reference because the circuit is too different,” he said after the race.

The Albert Park circuit in Melbourne is a temporary venue with few high-speed corners, unlike most of the other circuits on the calendar.

Vettel also shrugged off questions whether the strong aerodynamic performance of the RB9, which makes it so strong over a single lap in qualifying, was harming its tires during the race:

“I think we are still very competitive but I think there’s a lot more to it than just the raw downforce level. You could argue that with more downforce you go faster, you’re asking more of the tires, all of those things, but I think overall there’s a certain trend where some cars seem to work pretty well in some conditions.

“As Kimi touched on today, he was struggling with front tires; I think for us it was more evened out. We had both axles running away from us. I’m not sure about the Ferraris but looking at their tires during running, it looked pretty similar to us, so especially at the end of the stints.”

Hear more from Vettel in the post-race video interview with him above.

Takuma Sato’s likeness revealed on Borg-Warner Trophy (PHOTOS)

Photos; Walt Kuhn
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INDIANAPOLIS – Rather than the traditional December unveil, this year’s reveal newest likeness added to the Borg-Warner Trophy came Tuesday at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway Museum.

Takuma Sato got to see the result of the sculpting done by William Behrends and then turned from wax, clay and ceramic into sterling silver on Tuesday evening, as the winner of the 101st Indianapolis 500 presented by PennGrade Motor Oil saw his face revealed on the trophy.

Sato took the No. 26 Ruoff Home Mortgage Honda for Andretti Autosport to the win in thrilling fashion this year over Helio Castroneves, denying the Brazilian his fourth Indianapolis 500 victory in the process. It atoned for his near-miss in 2012, driving for Rahal Letterman Lanigan Racing, the team he’ll return to in 2018.

It’s been a whirlwind last week-plus for Sato, doing the podium interviews at the Japanese Grand Prix, reflecting on his Indianapolis 500 triumph, then sharing the victory spoils with another Japanese pilot in Yoshihide Muroya, who won the Red Bull Air Race World Championship at Indianapolis this weekend.

Photos of Sato’s face on the most unique trophy in sports are below. This post will be updated following tonight’s full unveil. (All photos: Walt Kuhn)