• Australian Grand Prix - Qualifying

Mercedes 'a bit disappointed' with qualifying

ESPNF1 Staff
March 17, 2012 « 'We don't want to bullshit ourselves' - Karthikeyan | McLaren considering Mercedes-style F-duct »
Michael Schumacher qualified fourth and Nico Rosberg seventh at Melbourne © Sutton Images
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Ross Brawn said that Mercedes is "a bit disappointed" with its qualifying result despite Michael Schumacher outqualifying both Red Bulls.

It became clear as final practice and qualifying unfolded that Mercedes had the pace to challenge McLaren and Red Bull for pole position, and Schumacher ended qualifying in fourth place ahead of Mark Webber and Sebastian Vettel. Nico Rosberg was only seventh, however, and Brawn said it wasn't a particularly smooth afternoon for Mercedes and that he wasn't judging form for the whole season on the first qualifying session.

"I think I've said we need to see the first four races and see how it spreads," Brawn said. "We're reasonably happy and I think for us to be reasonably happy but a bit disappointed in qualifying because it didn't quite go so well for us - we used up a set of tyres on the red flag of the second qualifying which were then carried through to start the final qualifying - it didn't go quite as smoothly as it might have done. But in fairness McLaren were very quick today and I'm not sure we could have got their times but we could have done just a little bit better."

Brawn added that the key to success this season would be how team's technical department develops the car throughout the year.

"We're reasonably happy with the car, the important thing now is that we've got a really strong line-up trying to improve it. The car seems to function OK, I've said before the cooling and all the systems on the car work well so we can now focus on performance improvements. So: happy, but still some way off where we want to be."