Vettel and Ganassi honoured at Autosport Awards

Sebastian Vettel was voted International Racing Driver of the Year at a star-studded Sunday night at the annual Autosport Awards in Park Lane, London. The newly crowned world champion was on hand to pick up the trophy on a night which also saw the Red Bull RB6, unsurprisingly, walk off with the Racing Car of the Year Award.

Vettel revealed that he was still a 'bit fragile' after a British Red Bull party on Saturday, but clearly enjoyed watching footage from the past 60 years of the sport and listening to observations from the likes of Sir Stirling Moss and Sir Jackie Stewart. "It's amazing" Vettel said, "Since I won the championship I have been to most corners of the planet and the wheels have not stopped turning."

Adrian Newey was joined on stage by key members of the Red Bull technical staff and said: "This year has been a very sweet one. You just have to enjoy the moment. It's been a long, hard season and we made hard work of it at times. On the morning of the Abu Dhabi race, we thought 'this is going to be difficult,' but the race was like a game of poker in which we ended up with a royal flush."

Attending the awards ceremony for the first time was Chip Ganassi, who won a John Bolster Award, named after the British magazine's first technical editor. The year has seen Ganassi's team win the Indy 500 and Indycar title with Dario Franchitti, the Daytona and Brickyard 400NASCAR events with Jamie McMurray and the GrandAm championship with Scott Pruett/Memo Rojos. Franchitti himself beat Lewis Hamilton and Jenson Button to claim the British Competition Driver of the Year award.

Franchitti and his cousin Paul di Resta remained on the stage to present an overcome Lewis Williamson with a 100,000 pound cheque as winner of the 22nd McLaren AUTOSPORT BRDC Young Driver award, which will also see the 21-year-old receive a McLaren F1 test as part of his prize. Williamson, despite five race wins, narrowly missed out on the Formule Renault UK title to Tom Blomqvist, son of rally ace Stig, who was among those he beat to the prestigious award.

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