Sebastian Vettel has admitted he wouldn't have been able to secure pole for the Malaysian GP today without KERS.
Red Bull Racing opted not to use the Kinetic Energy Recovery System in Australia two weeks ago, but this weekend the Milton Keynes-based outfit is using the device and speaking after taking the 17th pole position of his career, the F1 2010 world champion said it made all the difference. Indeed in the end Vettel finished qualifying just 0.104 seconds up on Lewis Hamilton's McLaren, edging out the Englishman right at the close of Q3.
“It was a challenging weekend until qualifying today. I was happy with the car, but we never really got into a rhythm. Yesterday wasn't as smooth as we hoped for, but we knew the car had speed, so the main thing was to keep believing in it. In qualifying everything worked out straight away,” he said.
“It was very close in the end though with the McLaren guys, so I'm happy to get pole.
“Big compliments to the guys in the team - especially those working on KERS, they did a lot of work since Australia. If we wouldn't have had it today, we wouldn't be sitting here now, so compliments to the guys – it's a good reward. It's very hot in the garage for the boys during this race, the air is pretty humid, so at least tonight they will get some good sleep ahead of tomorrow.”
Red Bull Racing team boss Christian Horner meanwhile was also very happy with the result, and with Mark Webber in third in the sister RB7, and only three tenths slower, both cars are well placed for Sunday's grand prix.
“A great team performance today,” Horner continued. “To get first and third on the grid after a fascinating qualifying session, which was really tight with the McLarens today, is a great start to the weekend.
“On the final run and under huge pressure, Sebastian delivered just enough to get pole. Mark also improved his time and for the team to take P1 and P3, sets us up well for tomorrow.”