Sebastian Vettel was 'happy' after claiming pole position for the F1 2011 Monaco Grand Prix today, although he added that the most important thing is that Sergio Perez is okay following his violent crash in Q3.
Vettel had to play second fiddle to Lewis Hamilton in Q1 and Q2. But in Q3, the German produced a stunning lap, a 1 minute 13.556 second effort, which put him four tenths up on his closest rival, McLaren's Jenson Button.
“It's a long way around this track. Qualifying is tough, there are three segments and you have to give 100 percent in each one. My laps in Q1 and Q2 were not perfect, but in Q3 it was spot on, so I was happy with that,” Vettel reflected.
“The most important thing to hear though is that Sergio is okay and is conscious. We were sitting and waiting to go out, but we were watching the images on the TV screen as well and so we're all thinking of him and wish him all the best. Hopefully he will be fit again very soon.
“It wasn't easy to sit and wait for such a long time in the garage and not many people improved their time afterwards.
“It's a long race here tomorrow and lots of things can happen. We've seen this year with multiple pit stops that things can change. Pole position is very important here, so we can be happy with that, but there's no guarantee for tomorrow's race. We need to push hard and see what we can do.”
Red Bull Racing team boss Christian Horner meanwhile was similarly worried about Perez. He also added though that Vettel's lap was 'phenomenal'.
“On a day like today when you see an accident like Sergio Perez had, the main concern is his well being,” Horner continued. “It sounds like the initial signs are positive, which is testimony to the strength of the cars and safety standards that the circuit now has.
“A similar accident for Karl Wendlinger in the nineties resulted in serious injuries, so the main thing today is that the initial signs are positive. Sergio's a strong boy and hopefully he'll be back to full health very quickly.
“Sebastian's performance in Q3 was quite phenomenal. The lap he produced was a classic balance of the speed and accuracy that's required around here – he delivered a very impressive lap time.”