Vettel: Upgrade didn't work as planned
19 July 2014 – Sebastian Vettel has admitted that an upgrade engine supplier Renault brought to the German Grand Prix has not worked as planned.
Although the Red Bull team – through Daniel Ricciardo – finished Friday practice as the closest challenger to the Mercedes pairing, it fell behind the Williams drivers and McLaren's Kevin Magnussen in qualifying.
The pair will share the third row, with Ricciardo holding the edge.
"We had an update on the car but it didn't bring us as much as it was supposed to," said Vettel.
"[The car] was generally better than this morning so I was fairly happy. On the last run we just didn't seem to be able to go with the track. I didn't get a smooth lap and didn't improve."
Vettel admitted to surprise over the pace Williams displayed in qualifying, after a low key opening day.
"To be honest, I think Williams didn't look as competitive yesterday. They made a big step today which was a bit of a surprise," he explained.
"But then again in the last couple of races they have been very strong so I think they will be very strong as well tomorrow. Generally on race pace we look a little bit better than in raw qualifying pace."
With this in mind, Ricciardo says he is expecting a close podium battle tomorrow afternoon.
"We know the Mercedes is strong, but the Williams was also continually showing their pace today and the McLaren with Kevin was good, so we have to keep working but we did what we could," he said.
"I think the race will be close between the top eight and it will be a battle for the final podium spot."