Sebastian Vettel expects the top four positions to be out of reach for Red Bull in the Brazilian Grand Prix unless it rains on Sunday.

While Red Bull was competitive with Williams in Austin and Daniel Ricciardo managed to beat both cars to the final podium position, qualifying at Interlagos saw a big gap between Mercedes, Williams and the rest of the field. Vettel admitted there had been no way Red Bull had been able to challenge for the second row despite it having looked more promising on Friday.

"I think Williams was just quite a bit quicker," Vettel said. "I think we've seen many times this year that Williams is very slow on Friday. I don't know whether they do something to save the engines or they run a lot of fuel or something else compromising their Fridays but I think we've seen many times that they pick up their pace for Saturday.

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"I think they were quite a lot quicker than us, in fact I think very close to the Mercedes as well. So too quick for everybody else I guess."

If the race is dry, Vettel said the most realistic target would be fifth place but hopes potential wet weather aids Red Bull's cause.

"I would hope that we can beat the McLaren. I obviously was very close with Jenson in qualifying as well so that should be possible but then it's difficult to predict. I think the first four cars are quite a bit quicker than us but then I think it's fairly close between us, Ferrari and McLaren. So it will be an interesting day tomorrow because the weather could mix things up, which if it happens hopefully helps us to get closer to the top four."