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Vettel fastest in final practice in Austria

Vettel was fastest in final practice in Austria. Credit: PA

Sebastian Vettel again came home faster than the Mercedes in a rain-affected final practice ahead of qualifying for the Austrian Grand Prix.

The four-time world champion put his Ferrari at the top of the timesheet on Friday afternoon and repeated the feat on Saturday morning, with a downpour over the Red Bull Ring effectively cutting the hour-long session in half.

The session had been red-flagged as Fernando Alonso's stricken McLaren was cleared from the pit straight and by the time it was returned to the garage the rain put pay to any further dry runs.

Lewis Hamilton got to within 0.017 seconds of Vettel's best effort, with the German the only driver to dip below the 70-second mark as he recorded a lap of one minute 09.994 seconds.

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Vettel turns down Rosberg's offer of garage visit

Vettel turns down Rosberg's offer. Credit: Reuters

Sebastian Vettel has knocked back an invitation from Nico Rosberg to visit the Mercedes garage this weekend, fearing a PR stunt.

Rosberg and Vettel became involved in a spat during the post-Australian Grand Prix press conference which resulted in the Ferrari driver suggesting Mercedes should open up their garage at the Sepang International Circuit for an inspection of their cars in the wake of a dominant display at Melbourne's Albert Park.

Rosberg then invited Vettel, with the latter suggesting the debrief in the engineers' room for his visit.

Vettel has now knocked back any chance of a visit: "When I was joking with Nico in the press conference the deal was the invite was for all the paddock. Now it seems the invite has shrunk to just me.

"Initially I think it was called off by Niki (Lauda, Mercedes non-executive director) and Toto (Wolff, Mercedes motorsport boss).

"Now they've told (Rosberg) yes, so I think they are using it as a bit more of a PR thing rather than a proper invite, so the answer is no I won't be going."

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Vettel faces champagne moment after fourth title win

Formula 1 champion Sebastian Vettel celebrated in trademark fashion at the top of the podium after victory at the Indian Grand Prix brought him his fourth consecutive title.

The Red Bull driver was sprayed in the face with champagne by Mercedes driver Nico Rosberg, who came second in the Delhi race. Credit: James Moy Photography/Press Association Images
The 26-year-old German enjoyed the dregs of the bottle after his world championship was confirmed. Credit: James Moy Photography/Press Association Images
Rosberg and third-placed finisher Romain Grosjean of Lotus held the champion aloft in front of the crowds. Credit: James Moy Photography/Press Association Images

Vettel fans cheer on hero in his German hometown

Sebastian Vettel was cheered on all the way to his fourth Formula 1 title victory by his fans at home in Heppenheim in southwestern Germany.

Crowds were gripped by events in Delhi as they watched the Indian Grand Prix at a special open-air public viewing. Credit: REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
A Vettel fan mimicked his famous victory pose as the driver went after his fourth consecutive title. Credit: REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach
His youngest fans used binoculars to keep a close eye on their hero's victory at the Buddh International Circuit. Credit: REUTERS/Kai Pfaffenbach

Sebastian Vettel wins fourth Formula 1 championship

The 26-year-old German continues to see off all rivals in Formula 1. Credit: REUTERS/Ahmad Masood

Sebastian Vettel has been crowned Formula 1 world champion for a fourth time with victory at the Indian Grand Prix.

The Red Bull driver, who began on pole, needed to finish at least fifth to retain his crown but still took the chequered flag, ahead of Nico Rosberg and Romain Grosjean.

The result draws him level with Alain Prost on four title wins. Only Michael Schumacher (7) and Juan Manuel Fangio (5) have won more world titles in the sport.

Vettel's victory also helped confirm Red Bull's successful defence of the constructors' championship.

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