Sebastian Vettel feels the Formula 1 tyres brought by Pirelli to the Spanish Grand Prix are “quite a bit different” compared to previous weekends, calling it the “biggest change” for Ferrari despite a number of updates on the SF71H car.

The FIA accepted Pirelli’s request to reduce the tread of the tyres by 0.4 mm for the Spanish, French and British Grands Prix following a resurfacing of the three circuits ahead of the new season.

The modified tyres made their on-track debut in Barcelona on Friday during the opening practice sessions for this weekend’s race, with a number of drivers struggling to find time when moving from the Soft to Supersoft compounds.

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While Vettel was happy with the updates Ferrari had brought for the race weekend, he noted a big change in the tyres as a result of the reduced tread.

“Everything that we put on the car seemed to work, so that's important. I think the biggest change to be honest came from the tyres, they seem to be quite a bit different,” Vettel said, having ended the day fourth-fastest for Ferrari.

“I don't think they're better than they were. But it's the same for everyone.

“I think it was quite slippery today, quite gusty as well. A mixed day.

“I think for us we can work on the car. I think we should be a bit stronger tomorrow.”

Currently sitting second in the F1 drivers’ championship, Vettel is confident of fighting at the front of the field in Spain, but feels there will be fine margins separating Ferrari, Red Bull and Mercedes at the front of the pack.

“I think we can improve. I know there's a little bit more in the car, and a little bit more in me if I get everything together, so it should be OK tomorrow,” Vettel said.

“Where we end up, I don't know. It's very close. It could be P1 or P6. But that's I think exciting.”

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