Vettel still looking for improvements in Austin

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Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel may have finished fastest in the second free practice session for this weekend’s United States Grand Prix, but he still believes that there is room for improvement heading into qualifying on Saturday.

Vettel failed to bother the front-runners in FP1 as he opted to run with heavy fuel and focus on his long runs, and subsequently finished down in eighteenth place. However, he and Red Bull teammate Mark Webber were in a class of their own during the second session, easily finishing P1 and P2. Nevertheless, Vettel is still looking for more.

“The circuit was quite slippery today; I was happy with the car, but you always know you can improve here and there,” Vettel said after practice. “I think we got through the programme we were able to test some things, some were good and some not so good, but we will see.”

Vettel has highlighted four teams as being in contention, although his seven race winning streak heading into this weekend suggests that it will take a retirement or incident during the race to deny the German driver.

“Ferrari looked quick this morning and McLaren could be a surprise here, and Lotus and Mercedes will be strong as normal. The track will improve now unless it rains, the car worked well on the tires, so we’ll see what we can do on Sunday.”

The United States Grand Prix is one of just two races on the current calendar that Vettel is yet to win, with the other being the Hungarian Grand Prix.

IndyCar 2017 driver review: All posts, one place

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In case you missed any of MotorSportsTalk’s extensive 2017 Verizon IndyCar Series driver-by-driver reviews on NBCSports.com, we’ve combined them all into one post.

See the full rankings below. Of the 38 drivers that raced at least once this year, 23 of them ran anywhere from six races to the full 17-race schedule, and got a full review. Drivers who competed in four or fewer races were packaged into the “remaining part-timers” post.

1. Josef Newgarden
2. Simon Pagenaud
3. Scott Dixon
4. Helio Castroneves
5. Will Power
6. Graham Rahal
7. Alexander Rossi
8. Takuma Sato
9. Ryan Hunter-Reay
10. Tony Kanaan
11. Max Chilton
12. Marco Andretti
13. James Hinchcliffe
14. Ed Jones
15. JR Hildebrand
16. Carlos Munoz
17. Charlie Kimball
18. Conor Daly
19. Mikhail Aleshin
20. Spencer Pigot / 22. Ed Carpenter
21. Sebastien Bourdais / 25. Esteban Gutierrez
23-24, 26-38. All the rest