Sebastian Vettel conceded that Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber had done a ‘better job’ than him today after losing his streak of successive pole positions in Barcelona.
The German was at a disadvantage throughout the qualifying session in that the KERS on his RB7 was not working. However, the world champion chooses to instead blame an imperfect lap in Q3 for only getting second place on the starting grid for tomorrow’s Spanish Grand Prix – and is still optimistic for his chances in the race.
“We can't speak of disappointment, at the end of the day we made a good step forward” said Vettel. “Barcelona is the place where everyone brings a lot of new parts and you're here to find out if they all work. I think we made a step, so did the others, but it looks as though we like this track and our cars feel comfortable here.
“Looking to qualifying, I didn't get into the rhythm immediately, so it was not the smoothest run, but I made it on the primes. In Q2 I felt much happier on the soft compound tyres, but unfortunately in the last qualifying I lost a little bit too much and I wasn't entirely happy with my lap.
“Mark did a good lap and a better job today. Let's see tomorrow, it's a long race and we saved a set of tyres. I think we will be on top of KERS for the race, the guys are pushing hard and we have proved our car has become quicker, so big compliments to the aero guys in the factory and everyone here. We are working hard on KERS. I didn't have it in Q2 or Q3 today, but I'm sure we will have it tomorrow for the race.”
Webber was understandably happy to finally get one up on his team-mate for the first time this season: “It was a good session,” said the Australian. “It was clear going into qualifying that we might have had a bit of a margin and would be battling for pole between ourselves today. You can never underestimate these guys though.
“We got through Q1 on the first set of hard tyres, which was good, and then in the crucial part of qualifying – in Q3 – it was just about getting the lap right. The lap was pretty good and I was just praying that my number went to the top when I crossed the line. It was a nice lap, a good battle with Seb and today was my day.”
Team Principal Christian Horner was obviously just delighted to get both cars on the front row of the grid for the second successive race. “A great team performance – it's great for Mark to get his first pole position of the year after a perfect final run in Q3,” he exclaimed. “Sebastian did phenomenal job to join Mark on the front row without the benefit of KERS. The pair had a big margin to our opposition in qualifying, although we know it will be smaller in the race. It was a fantastic team performance, we're looking forward to tomorrow.”