Red Bull drivers Sebastian Vettel and Mark Webber will start from unfamiliar grid positions after a mixed day for the team. Vettel found himself on the receiving end of an upset in Q2, getting knocked out in eleventh, but will start in the top ten courtesy of his own teammate’s misfortune. The world champion didn’t think he’d made any obvious errors, making his position even more surprising, but expects to be much stronger in the race.
“I felt pretty good this morning, the laps didn’t come together but the car felt good. There was nothing obvious that was wrong this afternoon, I was pretty happy with my lap, it was clean, but it just wasn’t quick enough. It’s a shame to miss Q3 by such a small margin, but that’s racing. We’ve seen in the last races that our car is pretty good in the race so we will see what we can do.”
Webber made it safely through to Q3 but could only manage seventh when it mattered, leaving him twelfth on the grid once his penalty is applied. Like Vettel though, the Australian is optimistic of making progress from the sixth row.
“I’m disappointed. We would like to have been higher up the grid to take the sting out of the penalty (5 places), but we’ll have to see what we can do tomorrow. We weren’t quick enough and couldn’t challenge for the front row today; I was pretty happy with my lap but I think P5 would have been our maximum today. We have a long race tomorrow and there should be some good opportunities to come through the field. Clearly we’re out of position a little and we have work to do, but the Team is a quality operation and we know what hard work is all about. We just need to keep pushing.”
Team Principal Christian Horner admitted the team made a strategic decision with Webber’s gearbox in Hungary but is confident of making up for the disappointment tomorrow.
“A different looking grid for tomorrow. Unfortunately with Mark we have to take a 5-place grid penalty, which we knew of in Hungary, but it was right to finish the race there. We felt it would be better to strategically take the penalty here than sacrifice points in Budapest. With Sebastian he appeared to struggle quite a lot in the second sector and unfortunately just missed the cut. Congratulations to Jenson on his pole. We will be racing hard to make up positions tomorrow.”