"It's just a good job it happened this year as opposed to last!"
Those were the words of Red Bull team principal Christian Horner as he contemplated Sebastian Vettel's first retirement of 2011 at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. Horner thought it was cruel for Vettel's challenge to end the way it did after such a superlative qualifying lap, which he rated as one of the German's very best.
It was a shame that we were robbed of a showdown between Lewis Hamilton and Vettel, but Red Bull made it fairly clear that without the problem, its man would have had Hamilton handled.
Casting your mind back to Yas Marina last year brings sharply into focus the extraordinary level Vettel has reached. Yes, he's had the best car, but ever since he stepped out of Red Bull's RB6 as world champion a year ago, he has, if anything, become even hungrier.