Title contender Sebastian Vettel will start from twentieth place for tomorrow’s Malaysian Grand Prix after suffering engine related issues during Free Practice 3 and in Qualifying.
The Scuderia Ferrari driver finished final practice second fastest but saw his session ended prematurely with issues regarding his Ferrari power unit. The team made changes, fitting another unit before qualifying, only to find an issue involving the compressor which forced the German to nurse his SF70 back home to the pits once again.
The Italian team tried to resolve the issue before the end of the session but failed to do so, with Vettel failing to set a lap, and, as a result, will start the race in last place, especially disappointing as title rival Lewis Hamilton will start on pole position.
“Straight away I understood there was something wrong” said Vettel regarding the issue.
“Today we had decided to change the engine after P3, then I went out and everything seemed to work, but during the flying lap in turn 5, I suddenly felt like I was losing power. I was lucky to limp back to the garage so that we could have a look.”
Despite starting from last on the grid, compared to Hamilton who will see a clear road ahead of lights out, Vettel believes that he’ll be able to fight back and aim to make up positions of the race tomorrow, but admits it feels a shame that issues occurred when his car felt positive.
“It’s a shame because the car is quick, but tomorrow we should be able to fight back,” said Vettel. “I don’t have expectations in terms of numbers, but anything can happen and that’s why we race.”
“I want to be sure we can achieve our best. We need to know why we got the issue today and make sure it won’t happen again. This kind of thing can happen in our sport, but the race is tomorrow. We need to be positive”.