Webber expects Vettel to match Schumacher’s seven titles

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Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel may not have been the best of friends in their five years as team mates at Red Bull, but Webber showed his respect for his team mate’s abilities in a recent interview.

Webber told the Daily Mail he expects Vettel to equal Michael Schumacher’s record of winning seven world championship titles.

“Seb’s phenomenal, a very tough act,” said Webber. “I think he will reach Michael Schumacher’s total of seven championships, no problem.”

Vettel’s success is not just down to the strength of Red Bull’s cars in recent seasons, Webber added. “Seb has won a lot of races when the car has been good, but he has also won a lot when the car hasn’t been good.

“Seb is like Alain Prost, but with a qualifying lap at his fingertips. Impressive. Also, he hardly ever makes a mistake. It’s not all the car.”

“It’s been fascinating for me to be in the boxing ring with him. I will look back at that and, realize you have understood a lot about yourself from what went on. It was a big juicy part of Formula One.”

Webber has had a tough time alongside Vettel this year, being out-qualified 15 times to 2 and has not finished ahead of Vettel in any of the 13 races where both have seen the checkered flag. That includes the contentious Malaysian Grand Prix where Vettel ignored a late-race team order to finish behind Webber.

Audi bids farewell to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich upon retirement

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Audi bid farewell to its iconic head of motorsport, Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, at its end-of-season ‘Race Night’ event in Germany on Friday upon his retirement.

Ullrich took over the reins as Audi’s head of motorsport in 1993 and stayed in the role for 23 years, overseeing its arrival in the prototype class of sports car racing and domination of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ullrich stepped down from the position at the end of 2016, handing the reins over to ex-Audi DTM chief Dieter Gass, and attended his final racing event with the German marque at its first works Formula E outing in Hong Kong earlier this month.

Ullrich was honored at the Race Night event on Friday and thanked for his efforts in developing Audi into a force within global motorsport.

“In 566 factory-backed commitments during this period he celebrated 209 victories, 13 of them in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eleven in the 12-hour race at Sebring and nine in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ at Road Atlanta,” a piece on Ullrich’s tenure for Audi’s website reads.

“31 driver titles in super touring car racing, in the DTM and in the sports prototype category are credited to him. 57 campaigners were Audi factory drivers during Wolfgang Ullrich’s era and he was responsible for 18 new developments of racing cars – an impressive tally.”