Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel finished day one of the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix as best of the rest after posting the third best time, two tenths of a second behind the two Mercedes drivers and he has declared himself happy enough with their overall pace..
Warm and dry conditions greeted the F1 circus for the season finale and after using the Halo on his Ferrari in the first ninety minute session, Seb put his SF16-H through its paces over single quick laps on the Ultrasoft compound. When switching to long run simulations, Seb used the softer compounds.
The German’s session came to a premature end with a few minutes remaining because of a problem with the gearbox, which was at the end of its life and was intended for use solely during free practice, therefore there will be no penalty applied int eh race.
“I am fairly happy with the day. Obviously, it is not ideal to have a gearbox issue on Friday, but I am not worried and it shouldn’t have any impact on the weekend,” he explained. “In general it was a very good Friday. This afternoon P1 was somewhat tricky, as we struggled a bit on the hot track.”
“But during P2 in the evening things calmed down, the car also calmed down, it was quite good and I was happy. In the long run I struggled a bit with the front end, maybe I was a bit too aggressive, but overall the car felt good. To be honest, I think we should have a good pace. Hopefully tomorrow we have a similar feeling in Quali and put the car where it belongs.”