New Formula One world champion Sebastian Vettel revealed rival Fernando Alonso has yet to congratulate him on his success as the German greeted fans in his home town on Sunday.
Around 10,000 fans cheered on the new champion in his home town of Heppenheim, 60km from Frankfurt, after two days of tyre testing in Abu Dhabi with his Red Bull team.
Vettel, 23, picked up his fifth grand prix win of the season last Sunday in Abu Dhabi, to win the drivers’ world championship by four points from Alonso, and has been in high demand since becoming the youngest ever world champion.
Last week, he flew to Salzburg, Austria, to visit Red Bull headquarters before flying to the team base in Milton Keynes, England, then went back to the Middle East for testing and was helicoptered into Heppenheim on Sunday.
“He still has not congratulated me,” revealed Vettel, when asked if the Spaniard had contacted him, but said the last week has felt like a dream.
“I have been hoping all the time that I don’t wake up from this. “It’s all a bit unreal for me, it seems my face was on the front page of every German newspaper. “I find it all a bit hard to take in, because at the end of the day, I am just a normal boy.” Vettel was greeted by cries of ‘Sebastian, Sebastian!’ as he came onto the stage in his home town, where his parents still live, and took a picture of the scene with his mobile phone.
“This one is going in my bedroom,” he said after fans started arriving from 7am and police closed roads in the town centre an hour later with more than 200 officers keeping an eye on the festivities.
“I didn’t expect to see so many people, this makes me really proud as a Heppenheim boy.
“I have got goose pimples, this is better than Abu Dhabi, because there weren’t so many people there.”