Vettel pleased with fast start

World champion Sebastian Vettel has warned not to read too much into his rapid start to pre-season testing at Valencia - but admitted he was impressed with the Red Bull RB7 on its debut

Vettel pleased with fast start

Vettel was quickest on the opening day of the 'winter season' today, with the next-best 2011 car - Fernando Alonso's Ferrari - 0.7 seconds slower in fifth. He was pleased with both the car's pace and its early reliability.

"I think generally it is better to be on top of the rankings rather than being on the other end," Vettel acknowledged.

"It was the first day and it was most important to do laps, which we did - we did around 93 laps and that is quite an achievement and looking back it is something that we never got quite as good on the first day over the last two or three years, so that is a very good sign.

"On top of it I feel quite comfortable in the car, I enjoyed myself today and I think it was a good start."

Vettel was pleased to have sent an early message to his rivals with today's pace, while also emphasising that this was just the first day of a very long campaign.

"Today was day one for most of us, and it is a long, long way - long testing season, before we start racing again in Bahrain and then a very, very long season - 20 races - so even if you start with the best car, things can change so you need to keep the development up," he said.

"Right now, we have just done the first step and we can be happy and proud of what we have achieved so far. It is day one and not much time between Abu Dhabi and here - 10 weeks - but for the guys to build a car that has no issues is, I reckon, good news."

He preferred not to try and judge any of Red Bull's main rivals at this early point.

"It is difficult to say at this stage, we haven't seen all the cars, particularly the McLaren car, it is not yet out on track," Vettel said.

"This was the first day so very hard to draw conclusions with so little running so we need to have more running on track to see where we are.

"It is practice for all of us, different programmes, different days and we need to be aware of the big teams - hopefully us - and besides us I guess McLaren, Ferrari and Mercedes, the logical ones, and who knows, a surprise like Renault who perhaps have an interesting concept from what we saw yesterday. So we will see.

"I think in general it is different to last year, so many things changed, especially with the diffuser, floor of the car, less complexity compared to last year, floors fairly simple and the same for all of us, and a lot of buttons to press this year.

"So we will see how we get on with that - new tyres on top. The car does feel a bit different but after all not that much."

shares
comments
Vettel fastest in first test of 2011
Previous article

Vettel fastest in first test of 2011

Next article

Barrichello positive after first day

Barrichello positive after first day
Load comments
The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback Plus

The remarkable qualities that propelled Kubica’s F1 comeback

It’s easy to look at
 Robert Kubica’s second Formula 1 career and feel a sense of sadness that he didn’t reach the heights for which he seemed destined. But as BEN ANDERSON discovered, performance and results are almost meaningless in this context – something more fundamental and incredible happened…

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren  Plus

The humbling changes Ricciardo made to deliver the goods for McLaren 

From being lapped by his own team-mate in Monaco to winning at Monza, it’s been a tumultuous first season at McLaren for Daniel Ricciardo. But, as he tells STUART CODLING, there’s more to the story of his turnaround than having a lovely summer holiday during Formula 1's summer break...

Formula 1
Nov 26, 2021
The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title Plus

The potential benefits of losing the F1 constructors' title

As the battle continues to rage over the F1 2021 drivers' championship, teams up and down the grid are turning their attentions to the prize money attributed to each position in the constructors' standings. But F1's sliding scale rules governing windtunnel and CFD use will soften the blow for those who miss out on the top places

Formula 1
Nov 25, 2021
The invisible enemy that’s made Hamilton’s title charge tougher Plus

The invisible enemy that’s made Hamilton’s title charge tougher

After winning his past few Formula 1 titles at a canter, Lewis Hamilton currently trails Max Verstappen by eight points heading into the final double-header of 2021. Although Red Bull has been his biggest on-track challenge, Hamilton feels that he has just as much to grapple with away from the circuit

Formula 1
Nov 24, 2021
Why F1’s inconvenient penalties have to stay Plus

Why F1’s inconvenient penalties have to stay

OPINION: Quibbles over the length of time taken by Formula 1's stewards over decisions are entirely valid. But however inconvenient it is, there can be no questioning the importance of having clearly defined rules that everyone understands and can stick to. Recent events have shown that ambiguity could have big consequences

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021’s title fight climax Plus

The mistakes Red Bull cannot afford to repeat in F1 2021’s title fight climax

OPINION: Red Bull has had Formula 1’s fastest package for most of 2021, but in several of the title run-in events it has wasted the RB16B’s potential. It cannot afford to do so again with Lewis Hamilton motoring back towards Max Verstappen in the drivers’ standings with two rounds remaining

Formula 1
Nov 23, 2021
Qatar Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Qatar Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Qatar was a virtual unknown for most as Formula 1 made its inaugural visit to the Gulf state, and tyre management quickly emerged as an even more critical factor than normal. Perhaps then it should come as no surprise that two of the championship's elder statesmen produced standout drives

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2021
How Hamilton dominated in Qatar despite missing a key Mercedes advantage Plus

How Hamilton dominated in Qatar despite missing a key Mercedes advantage

There was simply no stopping Lewis Hamilton on Formula 1's first visit to Qatar. The Mercedes driver eased to pole position and led every lap to secure an utterly dominant victory - even without a key Mercedes weapon in his arsenal to increase the heat on Red Bull heading into the final two races of the gripping 2021 title race

Formula 1
Nov 22, 2021