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Vettel: Nice to see Ferrari appreciates Kimi

24 Août 2017

Vettel has yet to sign an extension on his Ferrari contract, which expires at the end of the season, while Mercedes are yet to confirm that Valtteri Bottas will remain Hamilton's team-mate next year.

Vettel moved to Ferrari with four titles under his belt following a prolonged run of dominance at Red Bull. If I didn't feel I could go fast and wouldn't be happy in myself, I wouldn't be here.

A big crowd is expected to camp out and herald Formula One's "return to work" from the beach at this weekend's Belgian Grand Prix where Stoffel Vandoorne will hope to mark his retention by McLaren with a strong showing in front of his home fans.

Hamilton has won twice before at Spa, as has Vettel, but the track - a classic blast from the past - has not been particularly kind to him. Vettel said. "I think it's the other way around as well".

"I think the team is in a very, very good [place]. the last race is actually one of the best examples of how great the team is now", said Hamilton, referring to him handing a position back to Bottas at the Hungarian Grand Prix after being allowed to pass for an attack at the leading Ferrari duo. Obviously the only thing I was interested in was to be here next year.

"There are some similarities [to Silverstone], obviously, but there are some things that are very different, so we'll see", Vettel explained on Thursday.

Hamilton has had an up and down start to the season - he and Vettel have won four races each but the German has maximised his car's performance better than his rival, who has had a number of off-weekends.

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Ferrari has not taken victory at the Belgian Grand Prix since 2009.

He added: "We know what is going on with our vehicle and where it can be better". Just got to do the job and let them do their talking outside.

He added: "As long as I feel myself that I can win races and fight for championships then that is why".

Vettel said he felt Mercedes were "favourites" to win in Belgium on Sunday because the high-speed track bears similarities to Silverstone, where Hamilton dominated. You always find things to do better.

"The fact that its likely to be similar here for us makes it fairly straightforward".

"I think it's highly unlikely that [Vettel] would be here", Hamilton said when asked if he would relish going up against Vettel in the same auto. "We want to catch up with Ferrari's advantage on the slower tracks".

Vettel: Nice to see Ferrari appreciates Kimi