Race of Champions

Vettel Delivers Solo Spectacular to Win Nations Cup for Germany

2 Mins read
Sebastien Vettel, Germany, Formula 1,© Craig Robertson © Race Photography

Team Germany dominated the 2017 Race of Champions, to win the Nations Cup with a perfect record, against Team USA NASCAR. With his co-driver not participating, Sebastian Vettel drove a spectacular solo effort to collect his first Nations Cup without Michael Schumacher.

Despite not having a team-mate for the entire event, due to Pascal Wehrlein‘s crash on Saturday, Team Germany, represented by only Vettel, made his way through to final where he faced the Busch brothers of Kyle and Kurt.

It would be the best of three events as Kurt Busch lined up for the opening race. The German made a trademark glorious start, but almost lost time in the first corner. This however, proved to be a small blip as Vettel won the first race.

Kyle Busch attempted up to stop the German, but it wasn’t enough. The American had made a strong start, but dropped back in the second lap as Vettel continued his clean sweep of Sunday events, winning the final 2-0.

The result ensured Germany won their seventh Nations Cup and Vettel becomes the first driver to win the Nations Cup as a solo driver.

North American Group

The biggest upset came in Team Canada as ROC Factor winner Stefan Rzadzinski beat not just Alexander Rossi but later Scott Speed. This proved to be vital as Team USA IndyCar would have to rely on Ryan Hunter-Reay to see them through.

As it turned out, it was an almost faultless performance from Team USA NASCAR, with Kyle Busch and brother Kurt winning two a piece. This would have been enough to see the team through as favourites, but the IndyCar duo would eventually finish as the Groups top team.

One American team was bound to reach the final, but the Team USA NASCARs Semi-Final win proved to be controversial. (Credit: Craig Robertson/RacePhotography.net)

Rest of World

It was a disaster for Team Great Britain who failed to win any of their first three races. David Coulthard started to save their blushes with a win against Team Nordic, but it wasn’t enough for either to beat the other European giant.

The ROC Factor Latin America winner Gabriel Glusman had a dramatic heat, struggling to handle his three-wheel machine. He crashed in the final lap and was withdrawn from the competition, leaving Helio Castroneves to carry the flag.

Tom Kristensen and Team Nordic was keen to make up for his disappointment on Saturday, but could only pick up a win against Jenson Button. Elsewhere, two wins for Team Brazil, Team Latin America and Team Colombia saw the former two fail to progress by the narrowest of margins.

As for Team Germany, it was a dominant affair for Sebastian Vettel who single-handedly won all his Group races. This proved to be the same for Team Colombia as Juan Pablo Montoya helped his team through with Gabby Chaves almost holding them back.

Semi Finals

The first event of Team Germany vs Team Colombia saw the competitions two heavy weights go head-to-head. Yesterday’s winning driver Montoya made a mistake on the start and dropped behind Vettel who won by almost a second.

Chaves would attempt to salvage some pride for the Colombian’s, but it proved to be of little use with Vettel simply extending his advantage.

Meanwhile in the America’s half of the event, Hunter-Reay lost convincingly to Kurt Busch after a disastrous opening lap. Rossi, would extend it down to the wire, but failed to win in the tie break allowing Kyle Busch to easily drive to victory.

The drama would continue though as Busch was accused of jumping the start. Nothing was done about it though, setting up a final between Team USA NASCAR and Team Germany.

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