Formula One

 
                  === F1 returns to India for second time ===
 
 Philadelphia,  PA  (Sports Network) -  Separated by just six points, Sebastian
 Vettel and Fernando Alonso take their Formula One world championship battle to
 India.
 
 Just  four races remain,  with Abu Dhabi (Nov. 4), Austin, Texas (Nov. 18) and
 Brazil (Nov. 25) following the Indian Grand Prix.
 
 Vettel,  the  two-time defending F1  champion, will  attempt to win his fourth
 consecutive grand prix. Since his retirement in the Sept. 9 Italian Grand Prix
 due  to  a mechanical  problem, the Red  Bull driver has  returned to the same
 winning  form  he had last  year by scoring  victories in Singapore, Japan and
 Korea. He has gained 45 points on Alonso in the past three grand prix.
 
 "The  spirit is perfect  in the garage, the atmosphere is great and I think we
 all  want  to do  our best and  to really try  and win  the race on a Sunday,"
 Vettel  said. "I think  we've been pushing very hard all season. We have tried
 lots of stuff. Sometimes it was more successful than other times."
 
 Vettel won last year's inaugural Indian GP, doing so in dominating fashion. He
 started  on  the pole  and led all  60 laps around  the newly built 3.192-mile
 Buddh International Circuit.
 
 "I  loved  the track layout last  year, but not  just because I won the race,"
 Vettel  said. "With  an average speed of  235 kph (146 mph), the course is the
 second  quickest of the  year after Monza (Italy). There is a lot of elevation
 change  around the  lap, which adds to  the fun, from as much as eight percent
 downhill  and up  to 10 percent uphill.  It's like a roller coaster. It really
 has  emerged as  one of the most  challenging circuits on the calendar for the
 drivers."
 
 Alonso  has finished  third in  three of  the past  five grand  prix, but  his
 retirements in Belgium and Japan due to accidents on the opening lap have been
 costly  for the Ferrari  driver in his bid to win a third F1 title. Alonso has
 three  victories  this season but  has not won since  the July 22 German Grand
 Prix.
 
 Can he get back to his winning ways in India, as well as Abu Dhabi, Austin and
 Brazil?
 
 "We  will see."  Alonso said. "It will  depend obviously on the updates in the
 car. I think we will see in India if there are any new parts. If there are, we
 will  need to test  them. For sure, the other teams will also bring new parts,
 maybe more than us, so we need to see which of them are working, which of them
 are not working and for who they work."
 
 Alonso  started and finished third in last year's Indian GP. He has yet to win
 in  Abu  Dhabi and Brazil. F1  will compete in  Austin for the first time this
 year.
 
 "We just need a little last step to be as competitive as Red Bull, and I think
 it will be a beautiful last four races to the end," Alonso added.
 
 Narain  Karthikeyan  from HRT is the  only Indian driver currently in F1. Last
 year,  Karthikeyan replaced Vitantonio Liuzzi in the HRT car for the Indian GP
 only. He finished three laps behind in 17th.
 
 Series: Formula One. Date: Sunday, Oct. 28. Race: Indian Grand Prix. Site:
 Buddh International Circuit. Track: 3.192-mile (5.141-kilometer), 16-turn road
 course. Start Time: 5:30 a.m. (et). Laps: 60. Miles: 191.52 (307.249 km). 2011
 Winner: Sebastian Vettel. Television: Speed.
 
 
 10/25 11:56:43 ET

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