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Mercedes was 'ultimately faster' at Suzuka - Vettel

  • Published on 14 Oct 2019 12:43
  • comments 3
  • By: Dieter Rencken & Coilin Higgins

Sebastian Vettel has admitted that the two Mercedes cars were ultimately faster than Ferrari during Sunday's Japanese Grand Prix.

Vettel and teammate Charles Leclerc managed to lock out the front row during Sunday morning's qualifying, but thanks to problems at the start for both drivers, Valtteri Bottas managed to take the chequered flag first to take his third win of the season.

Despite believing that the Silver Arrows were faster in race pace, Vettel still believes that there was a strategic chance to 'play' with both cars in order to hold Mercedes back if the two cars didn't hit problems at the start.

"Yeah, because then you can play a little bit more," Vettel said. "You have two cars so you can play but as I said, ultimately they were faster and you are always going to find a way past if you are that bit faster.

"The question is would it have been enough to get past both cars or just one car but obviously it didn't happen. I didn't have a good start and I guess Charles didn't have a good start either.

"We are here to win so obviously it was not a great weekend but we got the pole this morning so with both cars at the front.

"We need to see what happened, I had a mistake at the start, I don't know what happened to Charles and we lost him early in the race so otherwise we could have been a bit more strategic to fight the Mercedes."

Vettel thinks there is still a lot to take away from the weekend at Suzuka, such as the dominating qualifying performance, and is confident the team can work on it in the final four races and bring the performance on into next season's car

"I think this circuit was probably more in their favour and maybe not for one lap but in the race they seemed to be better looking after their tyres." Vettel commented.

"It was difficult to fight them off but yeah, overall there is still a positive trend for us and we need to make sure we keep it up and we learn as much as we can for next year."

Replies (3)

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  • If Mercedes was faster (of which I am not convinced) then it was very marginal. Seb would have been able to easily maintain the lead had he not screwed up once again. He's in better form than he's been all year, but this is still very subpar compared to the old Seb.

    How many consecutive pole positions for Ferrari now? And still suggesting that they are behind Mercedes... Nice try

    • + 0
    • Oct 14 2019 - 18:16
    • abhidbgt

      Posts: 235

      It's not an excuse but the laptimes in race do suggest that Ferrari cannot hold the same grip level as Mercedes. Over one lap maybe they have an edge but over the whole race they don't, I think.

      • + 0
      • Oct 15 2019 - 04:51
  • ashavin301

    Posts: 17

    Vettle what are you talking about???
    I'm one of your biggest fan BUT I think this is the straw that breaks the camels back.
    How can a 4 time world champion make so many errors consistently??
    One you have gotten to the first corner first there is noway merc.. was winning this race.
    Your just making excuses because you screwed up again.

    • + 1
    • Oct 14 2019 - 19:03

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