Sebastian Vettel was not to downbeat with the result of Qualifying for the Singapore Grand Prix and feels there is every opportunity to beat Lewis Hamilton on Sunday and reignite his championship challenge.
The Scuderia Ferrari driver had led the way in final practice on Saturday afternoon but when the lights came on, he could only finish third fastest in Qualifying at the Marina Bay Street Circuit, just over six-tenths of a second down on championship rival Hamilton, and just under three-tenths of a second down on Aston Martin Red Bull Racing’s Max Verstappen.
Despite starting on the second row, he feels he will be in the fight for victory on Sunday as the top three teams all look to have similar race pace, however he did acknowledge that he could have done better in Qualifying and felt Hamilton’s record-breaking pole lap could have been in reach had he got a perfect lap in during Q3.
“Our laps today were not ideal and, all in all, our qualifying session was not as good as it could have been,” said Vettel. “I think we didn’t take the best out of the car. We didn’t have a smooth session, that’s it.
“The gap seems big but it’s partly because this is a very long track, so I am not worried. I think Lewis had a very good lap but he was not impossible to beat. Obviously, it’s always better to start from the front row, but I think tomorrow it will be fine.
“The car is good, so I believe we can stay with the group of the cars in front and then we have two hours of racing to work something out. You never know what can happen. Obviously, we should have done better because we had all the ingredients, but today we didn’t put them all together.
“I’m not completely upset because third is not a disaster, but for sure we wanted to qualify on pole and that was up for grabs today. However, we now turn the page and see how we can fight tomorrow.”