20 September 2014
F1 Singapore Grand Prix: Pole was manageable, admits Vettel
Sebastian Vettel believes that he had the potential to claim pole position for the Singapore F1 Grand Prix had it not been for a series of little errors.
Sebastian Vettel was left to rue a series of minor errors in qualifying for the Singapore Grand Prix as he came up short of a pole position he thought could have been his.
The world champion, whose four-year reign will come to a close in the coming weeks, eventually clocked the fourth-best time of the night-time session and will share row two of the grid with Red Bull team-mate Daniel Ricciardo on Sunday, but believes that, with a better lap, he could have denied even the Mercedes drivers.
“I wasn't entirely happy with the lap I had,” he admitted, “I thought there was more but I was probably pushing a little bit too much and overstepped the mark. Once you overslip the tyre, you go a little bit too far, and you pay the price in the next few corners - and there's a lot of corners here!”
“Sector two, in turns 11-12, then 13 as a consequence, and I had a little bit of a moment through 16-17, lost the rear, then it's not going to be great in 18-19 and out of 21,” he continued, detailing his 'errors', “It's small things, but they add up if you don't get the grip you were looking for in the first place. How much [I lost] is difficult to say, and I don't know how other people were with their lap, but I think pole was manageable today...”
Vettel has long maintained that the 2014 Red Bull has been hard to set-up for his driving style, a claim underlined by Ricciardo's better race performances and three victories, but he refused to let that be the reason for his result in qualifying.
“The car is not yet doing what I want it to do - when I want to push and make something happen, it just doesn't...,” he sighed, “I think it's a characteristic of this year's car - a combination of the downforce we have, the tyres, it just doesn't give me yet what I want in a certain area of the corner. But that's not an excuse as I have to get the best out of the car. I could have done a better job of getting a better lap together today, but I didn't and I can't be happy with that. If you look at raw lap times, I think I should have been higher up.”
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