Sebastian Vettel has blamed his fifth place grid position on Max Verstappen’s error in the third and final qualifying session of the 2016 Formula One Championship season.
When the Ferrari driver was on his second and final lap of the ten minute session when Verstappen locked up ahead of him and the smoke from his ultrasoft Pirelli tyres made Sebastian lost vital concentration.
“I’m not really happy with the result. I was struggling a bit with the balance of the car to start with. In the end it was good, but then in the last lap I had a bit of a messy last sector,” Sebastian explained. “I saw a bit of smoke from Verstappen ahead, enough to lose a bit of concentration.”
Sebastian had set the best time of the third free practice session earlier in the day and after that he thought his Ferrari was capable of a lot stronger grid position, maybe not matching Mercedes as such, but at least ahead of the Red Bulls.
“We were expecting a bit more, not really to fight the Mercedes, but to beat Red Bulls,” he added. “I don’t think we were any slower, but we didn’t get the lap together when it mattered, probably we were a bit on the aggressive side trying to anticipate the track conditions.”
“For tomorrow it should be positive, for tonight it was a bit too much. Otherwise the car feels good, we managed to improve it today. Mercedes are a bit far away, but we hope to get ahead and be in front of Red Bulls tomorrow. We are on the softer compound, which should give us an advantage off the line and for the first lap.”