Sebastian Vettel says he was a passenger and “was not in control anymore” in his crash during Formula 1 pre-season testing in Barcelona

The German suffered a mechanical failure and was sent straight into the barriers at the long right-hander of Turn 3 on the second morning of the second and final winter test ahead of the new season. 

Vettel emerged unscathed from the accident and visited the medical centre as a precaution, while his SF90 Ferrari F1 car was left heavily damaged by the impact.  The four-time world champion insisted the Italian team is working “flat-out” to understand exactly what caused the problem.

“I was going into Turn 3 and I had a feeling there was an issue with the front-left corner and then from there it wasn’t anything that I could have done to avoid the impact,” Vettel explained. 

“After that I wasn’t in control anymore and went straight into the barriers. 

“We are flat-out trying to understand, it would be a lot easier if there was a lot of run-off and the car didn’t hit anything because now due to the hit it’s fairly damaged. 

“We have to be very careful in understanding exactly what is the problem. That is what everyone is looking at here at the track and also in Maranello. It’s important to us.” 

The issue restricted Vettel to just 40 laps in the morning and has proved a set-back to Ferrari’s run plan for the afternoon, with the team not expecting to get back out on track for at least a “few hours”. 

Asked how costly he thinks the crash is, Vettel replied: “Well we covered a lot of mileage last week but surely the plan is always to fulfil your programme. 

“We had more laps on the board than 40 this morning so for sure it is not ideal in that we are losing time. But right now it is important to understand what happened. 

“I hit the wall quite strongly and I think the Tecpro and the wall did their job and the car did its job but of course after the impact the car was very damaged. 

“That’s what also makes it quite difficult to reconstruct what was going on before the impact.” 

Charles Leclerc was due to takeover from Vettel to conduct Ferrari’s running this afternoon. 

 

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