Sebastian Vettel raises doubts about Mercedes and Red Bull F1 test pace

Ferrari's Sebastian Vettel believes Mercedes and Red Bull's strong long-run pace in winter Formula 1 testing could prove to be deceptive

Sebastian Vettel raises doubts about Mercedes and Red Bull F1 test pace

Analysis of the testing times suggested Mercedes had a clear edge on race pace at Barcelona, with Ferrari potentially falling behind Red Bull having been the champion team's main rival in 2017.

But Vettel says the fact Mercedes and Red Bull did race simulations entirely on the medium tyre means their performances might not be representative.

Ferrari dominated the top end of the timing charts at Barcelona with times set on shorter runs with Pirelli's softer compounds, while there were hints that Mercedes was struggling with tyre temperature on the softer types.

"Our competitors - Mercedes and Red Bull - used one type of tyre for their race distance simulations, which is something you can't do in a grand prix," said Vettel.

"This has an impact on the strategies and ultimately on the result."

He insisted Ferrari had had a strong pre-season and would head to the Australian Grand Prix in as a good a shape as its main rivals.

"We're starting from a good base with our SF71H car," Vettel added.

"Now we'll have to work on development to further explore and improve its potential.

"I have a lot of confidence in our team, I know how skilled and committed the guys in Maranello are.

"We, too, did a good job in terms of mileage, totalling some 4323km of running.

"I have a personal best of 188 laps in one day, which is 875km and a total of nearly 3000km.

"We did not experience any major issues with the car, and I had fun driving it.

"I can't wait to be in Australia, because once we get on track there, we will all be driving and racing under the same conditions.

"And, as I said before, I have confidence in our car."

shares
comments
How Mercedes exposes the scale of Renault’s challenge
Previous article

How Mercedes exposes the scale of Renault’s challenge

Next article

FIA warns F1 teams against using trick engine modes to boost aero

FIA warns F1 teams against using trick engine modes to boost aero
The pioneering pair who brought a new glory era to an F1 heavyweight  Plus

The pioneering pair who brought a new glory era to an F1 heavyweight 

With the team’s founder now retired and a new boss at the helm, change was coming to Brabham – change that would shape the future of Formula 1. In the third part of our four-part history of Brabham, DAMIEN SMITH examines the effect Bernie Ecclestone had on the team

The combination behind the Silverstone racing battles Hamilton called "F1 at its best" Plus

The combination behind the Silverstone racing battles Hamilton called "F1 at its best"

OPINION: The late battling in the British Grand Prix wowed Formula 1 fans and surely represents the best racing action of the season so far. And there was a cocktail of factors that created the action, from which Carlos Sainz emerged as a popular new winner

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine Plus

How Ferrari’s Monaco headache became its Silverstone migraine

OPINION: Ferrari won the British Grand Prix with Carlos Sainz, but it ultimately cost Charles Leclerc a chance to make a bigger dent in Max Verstappen's title lead by leaving the Monegasque out on old tyres towards the end. Like Monaco, indecision over strategy proved to be the Scuderia's biggest issue - and if the team doesn't reflect, the headache can only intensify

Formula 1
Jul 5, 2022
The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost Plus

The five factors behind Sainz winning a British GP he’d twice lost

Formula 1 has a newest race winner, in a grand prix the victor appeared to have lost twice, only to charge back to headline a sensational and dramatic British Grand Prix. From a massive start crash to a late sprint finish, here’s how five factors saw Carlos Sainz take his maiden grand prix win

Formula 1
Jul 4, 2022
Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga Plus

Why there was no case to answer in Aston’s latest F1 copycat saga

The appearance of a revised Aston Martin in Spain caused controversy but PAT SYMONDS explains why the FIA investigation found the Silverstone team had no case to answer

Formula 1
Jul 3, 2022
Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone Plus

Why it's Red Bull that really leads a three-way fight so far at Silverstone

After a slow start to Friday at Silverstone, all the Formula 1 teams had to effectively cram in a day’s worth of practice into one hour. But there was still plenty to learn and while Ferrari topped the times, a three-way battle is brewing ahead of the British Grand Prix

Formula 1
Jul 2, 2022
Why the future is bright for the British GP Plus

Why the future is bright for the British GP

It wasn’t so long ago the situation looked bleak at Silverstone with the future of the British Grand Prix under threat. But a transformation has seen it restored to one of the most important races on the Formula 1 calendar, with bigger and better to come

Formula 1
Jul 1, 2022
Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone? Plus

Could mixed fortunes for F1's leading Brits turn around at Silverstone?

For the first time in many years, none of the local racers starts among the favourites for the British Grand Prix. But George Russell, Lewis Hamilton and Lando Norris could have reasons for optimism

Formula 1
Jun 30, 2022