Vettel and Schumi win ROC Nations Cup
28 November, 2010
Nov.28 (Grand Prix 247) Local heroes Team Germany defeated Team GB in the final tonight to win the Race of Champions (ROC) Nations Cup in Düsseldorf after a thrilling contest featuring the world’s top motorsport stars.
Legends from all aspects of motorsport did battle for national pride in the ROC Nations Cup, behind the wheel of various vehicles, including the awesome Audi R8 LMS, on a purpose-built parallel track at the ESPRIT arena.
The ROC Nations Cup trophy has been won for the last three years by Sebastian Vettel and Michael Schumacher for Team Germany and they did not disappoint a big crowd tonight.
Schumacher squared up against Team GB’s Plato in identical KTM X-Bows for the first race of the best-of-three final and made the perfect start, winning by just under two seconds.
The action switched to Audi R8 LMS cars for the second race, which Priaulx won to keep the contest alive and set up a head to head with Schumacher for the title.
An incredibly tight deciding race in ROC Cars saw Schumacher narrowly defeat Priaulx and clinch Team Germany’s fourth ROC Nations Cup crown to the acclaim of their home fans.
Earlier in the evening, Team GB as group winners and runners-up Team France progressed through the round-robin Group A to line up a best-of-three semi-final.
Team Nordic, featuring Tom Kristensen and Heikki Kovalainen were eliminated on the tie-breaker of combined times while Alvaro Parente hit a wall in a KTM X-Bow as he and Team Portugal team-mate Filipe Albuquerque were knocked out.
In the first semi-final, Team GB prevailed in two races, with Plato beating Alain Prost in a VW Scirocco before Priaulx just finished of Loeb in a Porsche 911 to eliminate Team France.
In the other group, Team All Stars (Mick Doohan & Tanner Foust) and Team USA (Carl Edwards & Travis Pastrana) were knocked out as Team Germany and Team Benelux set a semi-final date.
After an exciting ROC Nations Cup, the drivers gave their reaction to events. Here’s what some of them had to say:
Michael Schumacher (Team Germany): “It is special because we had won this three times in a row which was great anyway. So to do it a fourth time here in Germany, considering we were almost knocked out in the group stages, is fantastic – we are more than happy. The crowd were very supportive tonight; they were cheering us all the way and with Sebastian having just won the world championship it was even more emotional and fun out there tonight. After the group stages we definitely needed to wake up – it felt like we were asleep. But when we were in the final, against the British guys, I thought we had a good chance.”
Sebastian Vettel (Team Germany): “The moment I went out on to the track everyone stood up and went crazy. It was a really cool night for all the fans, as well as for Michael and myself to get so much support. It was extremely close in the first round and we thought we might get knocked out. But I was lucky I had Michael on my team. It was a fun experience and to win at home, the first time in many years that The Race of Champions has been held in Germany, is very special.”
Action started early when ROC organiser and former rally driver Michele Mouton flipped an historic Audi Sport Quattro during demonstration laps prior to the main event.