Vettel Pleased with Barcelona Test
Sebastian Vettel was one of the many drivers who took part in Formula 1 pre-season testing in Barcelona.
The German feels it was a solid test for him and the Ferrari team, as they were able to work on what they wanted to while putting in lots of mileage. He also showed speed, posting the second quickest time, only behind his teammate Kimi Raikkonen.
“The first impression was good and everything that we’ve built during these two weeks felt very positive,” he commented. “I am very happy with the feeling in the car – but it is difficult speaking about performance and comparing it to the others. But in terms of our own performance, we are very happy with the step we’ve made.”
Finding speed was a clear objective for the Italian brand during the test, as they fell short of the constructor’s championship by 275 points, with Mercedes sweeping the top two spots in the standings. While showing more speed at the test, Vettel notes the real tale of the tape will be the results at the season opener in Melbourne.
I hope I will be in front of the two Mercedes That would be ideal,” he stated. “We have tried to close the gap – it was pretty big in recent years. We did a super job last season that brought us closer, and now the new car gives us the chance to close the gap even more. How much? We will have to wait at least a couple of weeks – at least.”
Notably, Mercedes had a transmission issue during testing with Lewis Hamilton, but that is something that hasn’t fazed Vettel.
“Given the laps that they’ve done in these past two weeks, in terms of reliability they look very strong,” he expressed. “So I don’t know what their problem was – but it is normal in testing that you run into issues. That is what testing is all about: to find out where your weak spots are.
The test also included testing the new halo, which is designed to make the cars safer, but offering protection above the open cockpit.
Vettel feels it was a successful test for the first outing as “you can see what you need to see”, but feels improvements can be made moving forward.
“I think we can improve the system in terms of aesthetics and also of how much is in your way,” he commented. “I have also tested that system in the simulator, and I am sure we will see evolutions of it very soon. In principle, I agree that right now it doesn’t look very nice, but on the other hand, if it helps to increase safety then one hundred percent go for it.”
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