Sebastian Vettel will start from the back row of the Canadian Grand Prix grid after qualifying problems were followed by a trip to the stewards' office.

The German was already on the back foot after mechanical problems limited him to a single sub-par run in Q1 and, although he initially benefited from Max Verstappen's earlier punishments, he was then found guilty of passing another car as they returned to the pits under the red flags that blighted FP3 on Saturday morning.

"I was behind the Manor and I don't what the problem was with him but he was quite slow and I passed him," Vettel said after being summoned to explain why he had overtaken Roberto Merhi in the final pre-qualifying session.

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As well as being put to the back of the field, Vettel also picked up disciplinary points on his licence, but his bigger concern will undoubtedly surround the health of his SF15-T, after he had to return to the pits at the end of his out-lap and remained in the garage until the final moments of Q1.

"We had an electronic problem that meant we lost power from the engine," he confirmed, "In the end we tried to make it to Q2 to buy us a little more time, but it would not have made any difference as we could not have fixed the problem in qualifying anyway."

Denying that there was any connection between the problem and the recent development of the V6, Vettel remained optimistic that he will be able to make up places on race day, especially as both he and team-mate Kimi Raikkonen exhibited good long run pace in Friday practice.

"I think we can do a lot as we have good straight and the car is quick," he reasoned, "I'm sure we can fix the problems and then we can have a good race. We know that the Mercedes is turning it up in qualifying, so we see the long runs as more representative than qualifying."