Sebastian Vettel has said he is 'very happy' to have taken the runners-up spot in the Australian Grand Prix today, although he conceded that eventual winner Jenson Button was 'unbeatable'.
Vettel looked to be on the back-foot after only qualifying sixth, but he made good start and made an impressive pass on Nico Rosberg on lap 2 to move to fourth. He then gained another position on lap 11, when the other Mercedes of Michael Schumacher retired. Near the end, Vettel also made the most of the safety car period to move ahead of Lewis Hamilton and up into second, although he felt even without it he could have probably challenged the McLaren driver.
Speaking after the opening round in the 2012 F1 World Championship, the 2010 and 2011 world champion added that his Red Bull RB8 definitely felt better on race day than it did 24 hours earlier.
“I'm very happy with myself today – I think it was the most we could have achieved,” Vettel commented. “I felt good in the car. Even before the safety car, I think we would have had a good shot at Lewis towards the end, as we were getting close. I decided to stay out when he went to the pits and we would have had a crack even without the safety car.
“I think it was a great race – a lot of fun. I had a good start initially and was surprised by Nico [Rosberg], who had a very good start and got past. I passed him again, which was a great manoeuvre and on the edge.
“Behind Michael [Schumacher], I had a mistake and went off in the first corner; he then did exactly the same when I got close to him, which was good.
“Congratulations [though] to McLaren and to Jenson [Button], I think he drove a fantastic race and was unbeatable today.
“I'm very happy to come away with second place, it's a lot of points and I think people would not have expected it after yesterday.
“I think we had a better car in the race and it seems to have a lot of potential, now it's up to us to get to it.
"Thanks to everyone who is pushing so hard and making this race result possible today.”