Vettel describes 'big relief' after positive start
14 March 2014 – Sebastian Vettel described Red Bull's performance on the opening day of practice for the Australian Grand Prix as a "big relief".
The outfit faced numerous power unit and car-related cooling issues during the pre-season testing period, but Vettel and team-mate Daniel Ricciardo racked up 115 laps between them during Friday's two sessions.
Vettel wound up fourth on the timesheets, 0.756 seconds adrift of Lewis Hamilton's pace-setting Mercedes, with Ricciardo placing sixth.
"It was very good. It is a big relief. A lot of work went into this," said Vettel.
"Neither of us had big problems today, the cars were running and the balance felt very good. Times are not worth a lot at the end of Friday but it is better to be closer to the top rather than somewhere lost at the back.
"In terms of speed we know there is a lot more to come but so far it feels very good."
Ricciardo shared Vettel's optimism: "We were probably expecting to be a bit further off. Hopefully the gap doesn't get any bigger [over the weekend]. If it stays where it is, within a second is better than expected coming here.
"I won't get too excited but today was really good for us. We learned a lot. I knew the guys were doing everything they could since testing, but to get as many laps as we did, we didn't expect that. We are really, really happy.
"This will motivate the team a lot and show that we can overcome any difficulties that are still ahead of us."