Despite uproar, Vettel keeps focus on victory

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Sebastian Vettel, who starts from the front row for tomorrow’s Bahrain Grand Prix (7:30 a.m. ET, NBC Sports Network), has faced the biggest wave of criticism in his career recently. His defiance of team orders from Infiniti Red Bull en route to winning the Malaysian Grand Prix over teammate Mark Webber has caused some fans to regard him as even more cold-blooded than a reptile; to them, his recognizable grin no longer is able to hide truly ruthless intentions.

But the killer instinct is essential to all great champions, including Vettel. Clearly, all he cares about is the end result, so why should he really care about what others may think of him? Shortly after Malaysia, NBCSN’s Will Buxton called him “a brutal, brilliant, beautiful racing animal” in his blog and that’s the long and the short of it when it comes to classifying the German racer.

Still, as Vettel shows in an interview with Buxton above, there’s still a bit of human left in the “animal.”

Watch tomorrow’s Bahrain Grand Prix online or on your mobile device.

MRTI: Telitz gets creative to help racing career

Photo: Indianapolis Motor Speedway, LLC Photography
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To say that Belardi Auto Racing’s Aaron Telitz has endured a difficult start to the 2018 Indy Lights Presented by Cooper Tires season would be an understatement. The Wisconsin native only completed four corners through the first three races – Races 1 and 2 at St. Petersburg, and Race 1 at Barber Motorsports Park – with St. Pete being especially problematic.

He took the pole for Race 1, but a crash during qualifying for Race 2 prevented him from actually starting. What’s more, the damage was so severe that the Belardi team needed a brand new chassis, with Telitz’s Dallara IL-15 damaged beyond repair.

They also had to borrow a car from Carlin for Race 2, but Telitz’s race ended after he got tangled up with Victor Franzoni in Turn 2 on Lap 1.

With the damage bill well into the six figures as a result, Telitz has taken to some unique, or rather, creative ways to raise money in the aftermath to help cover the costs. “Creative,” in this case, meaning Telitz is using his art skills.

An artist in his spare time, Telitz has begun selling his own original paintings to help raise money.

 “I’ve been to a lot of art shows and I see stuff and I go, ‘Holy cow, someone’s going to pay a thousand dollars for that thing?’” Telitz quipped in a story posted on the Milwaukee Journal.

In discussing his artistic abilities, Telitz added, “I’m working at getting better. I’d like to be able to paint some animals, those types of things. I got a request from Alexander Rossi to see if I could paint his dog. Unfortunately I can’t do that yet.”

Further, in a partnership with The Styled Garage, Telitz is selling his own merchandise, and accepting donations, to help his cause.

Telitz finished fourth in Race 2 at Barber on Sunday, and sits seventh in the Indy Lights championship, 59 points behind leader Pato O’Ward.

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