(Motorsport-Total.com) – Sebastian Vettel said it. On ‘Sky’, the four-time Formula 1 world champion said: “At the moment I don’t see any country [gegen Charles Leclerc]. “His Ferrari team-mate is currently not only beating him,” It’s like a different class, “says Vettel, also in qualifying for the Portugal Grand Prix in Portimao (follow all Formula 1 races 2020 here in the free live ticker! ) Vettel was clearly behind Leclerc.
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While Leclerc took fourth place on the grid, Vettel did not get beyond position 15. Distance: a little more than half a second in Q2. (Call up the complete qualifying result here!)
And Vettel is at a loss: “I try everything I can. I think the laps that I make and with which I am satisfied are still too slow. At the moment I have no more choice than to get what is in me. “
Did Vettel make a mistake in choosing tires?
Or did Vettel simply make a mistake with the tires in Portimao? After the first laps in Q1, which Vettel had completed with the soft tire compound, he suddenly had medium installed on the car in Q2 – and retired in last place in the second qualifying segment. However: Leclerc chose exactly the same tire tactics and came through.
In an interview with ‘RTL’, Vettel defends the tire decision. He said, “On the first try, I had [damit] actually a very good feeling. I got it off well. In the second attempt, however, the tires somehow did not get up to temperature. I had a stationary bike right in Turn 3. Then the lap was screwed up. “
He couldn’t explain why the medium tire didn’t work for him. O-Ton: “I don’t know why I find it so difficult to get the tires up to temperature that it feels a little different every time.”
Leclerc significantly faster with the same tires
“As I said, the car felt good on the first try. I thought I could easily set the time of Q1 with the medium. That was the default, but it wasn’t so easy.”
For comparison: In Q1 Vettel achieved a lap time of 1: 17,446 minutes and was waved two hundredths behind Leclerc on P8. In Q2, however, he was only in 15th place with 1: 17.919 minutes as the bottom of the partial session. Leclerc meanwhile came to 1: 17.367 minutes with Medium, was almost half a tenth faster than in Q1 on Soft.
However, Vettel does not want to talk about a wrong tire decision, but only remarks: “In retrospect, it’s easy to say. I just had difficulties getting the tires to work. And that was it.”
Vettel complains of the lack of Ferrari constancy
He was therefore “not at all satisfied” with his performance, Vettel continued. “I was having trouble getting things done.”
“It’s hard to find a rhythm when it’s different practically on every lap. That normally has to do with the tire temperature. So far this weekend it seems to have made a big difference.”
Especially with the soft version of Pirelli, he is at war in Portimao, says Vettel on ‘Sky Italia’. He had training very quickly, which would also have spoken for Medium in qualifying. “The medium tire,” says Vettel, “just seemed to be more durable.”
No high hopes for the race
And now Vettel no longer has high hopes for the race. “You can’t change anything anyway. It will be a difficult day tomorrow when you start from so far back. The problem is: We’ll be stuck in traffic for the entire race tomorrow. Just like in the previous races.”
When ‘RTL’ explicitly asked whether he was still looking forward to the race, Vettel said: “Next question!” Then the four-time Formula 1 world champion laughed and said: “Of course not. I mean: Today was not a good qualifying again. The race will then be some botch again.”
“Yes … Tomorrow is a new day. Then I’ll try to make the best of it. But of course, when you’re in there, it’s always different.”
Wurz: Expected more from a multiple champion
For Formula 1 expert Alexander Wurz from ORF, who used to be a Grand Prix driver himself, all of this is indicative of Vettel’s season. He says: “At least he is going to court with himself and says he expects more from himself. We also expect more from a multiple champion, we have to say quite honestly. And there is not much coming now.”
“So far he has not managed to tune the car to himself. Nothing works. That is tough. And he himself no longer has any answers to the questions.”
The fact is: Leclerc put the Ferrari team duel in qualifying in Portimao to 10: 2 in his favor. Vettel only had the better starting position in the second Spielberg qualifying and at the Hungaroring. In Hungary, Vettel also achieved a better race result than Leclerc for the only time so far this year when both Ferrari drivers crossed the finish line.