|© AP Photo/David J. Phillip
Red Bull lost the top spot at the drivers' podium on Sunday, but the team won its third consecutive Formula 1 constructors' championship behind Sebastian Vettel's second-place finish at the United States Grand Prix.
"I'm very, very happy for the team," Vettel said after Lewis Hamilton passed him on lap 42 to win and push him to second at the Circuit of the Americas. "It's been a tough year so far and they have been pushing incredibly hard; they deserve to win, as we have been the best team."
Red Bull has earned seven wins and eight pole positions this season with one race left to run next week in Brazil. Vettel started on the pole Sunday and teammate Mark Webber was in the No. 3 spot.
But Webber did not finish after retiring on the 17th lap with engine problems.
"Obviously Mark and I were pushing throughout the year. It was a shame for Mark not to finish today," Vettel said. "Lewis beat us fair and square. We showed we had the pace today and now it's full steam ahead to the next race."
While the drivers get the glory, the constructors' championship awards the work to put the best cars on the track, said Red Bull team principal Christian Horner. Red Bull is just the third team to win the title three years in a row.
"The constructors' is what we use to measure ourselves against our competitors and, for every member of the team, it's how we gauge our performance," Horner said. "The drivers obviously have the prestige and public following but within the team they carry equal importance."
Vettel leads the drivers' championship by 13 points over Ferrari's Fernando Alonso.