Red Bull Racing's Sebastien Vettel has conceded qualifying for the Monaco Grand Prix today was a 'bit of a disappointment'.
Vettel had been third quickest in final practice and seemingly on course to do well. However in the end he struggled during qualifying and had to bolt on a set of the supersofts to make sure he made it into the second session.
It was a similar story in Q2 as well with the German again at the wrong end of the times. Although he did make it through to the top-ten shootout, he didn't complete a lap in Q3, opting instead to save tyres for the race. He will now start from ninth on the grid tomorrow, bumped up a place as a result of Pastor Maldonado's ten-place penalty.
“It was a bit mixed up for me. It was looking very good this morning, but then I think we took a step in the wrong direction and ended up with a difficult car for qualifying,” Vettel commented.
“It's a bit of a disappointment, as Mark [Webber - my team-mate, who will start from pole] showed what the car can do around here, so we'll see what we can do tomorrow.
“It's Monaco though and everything is possible here. We could be on a different strategy tomorrow as we're able to start the race on hard tyres, slightly different to the cars ahead, so we'll see how the first stint goes and go from there. It's hard to predict, as it's a long race,” he added.
Red Bull team principal Christian Horner meanwhile added that it was a tactical decision for Vettel not to run in the final session.
“Sebastian appeared to struggle for pace through qualifying. He was never particularly happy with the car compared to this morning, which required him to run on options in Q1. He progressed through to Q3 on his second set of options, but based on what we could see pace-wise, we felt that it was better for us to have freedom of tyre choice to start the race tomorrow,” Horner explained.
“So, he carries a new set of options into the race, plus primes, so hopefully that gives some good strategic options.”