Formula 1

Vettel Predicting Close Qualifying Battle With Mercedes

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Sebastian Vettel doesn’t expect a straightforward run to pole position in Korea tomorrow after being outpaced by Lewis Hamilton in Friday practice. The world champion was a tenth shy of the Mercedes driver and admits he needs to make improvements to his Red Bull RB9 to have a shot at beating the Silver Arrows.

“There is some room for improvement. It will be close with Mercedes; of course we’re not sure what others were doing with their fuel loads today, but it seems close ahead of tomorrow’s qualifying. I like the track here, it’s a shame it’s so far from Seoul, which is a great city, but it’s good coming here as it’s quieter than some other races, which means we can focus on our job.”

Teammate Mark Webber was fourth behind the second Mercedes of and is looking for greater straight-line performance in sector one given the ten place grid penalty that hangs over him.

“We need to work on the balance; it’s more about understanding the tyres again and getting those working as well as possible. We need to work on both the short and long run balance, as obviously I’m going to be out of position after qualifying. We need to have a car which can be strong in the first sector, so we can get some overtaking done.”

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