Sebastian Vettel was pleased to see Scuderia Ferrari have a much better showing during Qualifying for the Bahrain Grand Prix on Saturday than they did during the whole Australian Grand Prix weekend two weeks ago, although he was denied pole position by team-mate Charles Leclerc.
Whereas Leclerc was able to advance into Q3 by just coming one run in both Q1 and Q2, Vettel was forced to run a second time in Q2 after a mistake, losing himself a new set of tyres in the process, meaning he only had one run to set a time in the top ten shootout, which ultimately was 0.294 seconds adrift of his team-mate.
Vettel was full of praise for his team-mate, who he felt deserved the pole position on merit after a strong performance all weekend long, and the front row lock-out goes a long way to show that the whole team are on the right track as they look to fight for both World Championships in 2019.
“Today we were in the fight,” said Vettel. “The main thing is we are back where we want to be. It’s tomorrow that counts, but for today we can certainly be very happy as we are in a much better place than two weeks ago.
“Today it’s about Ferrari and about Charles who did a very very good job and nailed his laps in Q3 and he deserved to be on pole. He’s a good kid, actually, a good man, because once you get a pole in Formula 1 you are a man! It’s a big achievement and I am happy for him. Chapeau!
“Our one lap pace was there the whole weekend and we were able to confirm this in qualifying. I’m a lot happier today and it’s good to see that we are back on the right track.”
Vettel was summoned by the steward’s post-session for allegedly driving too slowly on the way back to the pits, but after a brief investigation, no action was taken after telemetry showed that the German’s claims of ‘severe vibrations’ was backed up. The German had locked up heading into turn one, which caused his SF90 to suffer heavily flat-spotted front tyres.