Motor racing: Vettel era in F1 coming to an end, says Ecclestone

Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany gives a thumb-up on the podium after winning the Formula One Singapore Grand Prix on Sept 22, 2013. Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has predicted that triple world champion Vettel's dominance of the s
Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel of Germany gives a thumb-up on the podium after winning the Formula One Singapore Grand Prix on Sept 22, 2013. Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has predicted that triple world champion Vettel's dominance of the sport will soon be over. -- PHOTO: AFP

BERLIN (AFP) - Formula One supremo Bernie Ecclestone has predicted that triple world champion Sebastian Vettel's dominance of the sport will soon be over.

Speaking to Bild newspaper, Ecclestone said this season's runaway championship leader could even be knocked off his perch as early as next year.

"His domination will end, maybe in 2014. We're going to have completely new cars, new engines, new rules," said Ecclestone.

"That will be the chance for Ferrari and Mercedes to catch up with Vettel. Next year it might not be the best driver but the best car that wins the title."

Ecclestone said he believed the recent jeers that have met Vettel's last two race wins in Italy and Singapore were not due to him as a person, but due to his dominance.

The German has won the last three Grand Prix and seven in total this season, more than half the races, and leads Fernando Alonso by 60 points in the standings, with the Spaniard another 36 points clear of third-placed Lewis Hamilton.

"He doesn't give Fernando Alonso and Lewis Hamilton a chance, he's as dominant as (Ayrton) Senna or (Michael) Schumacher in certain periods."