• Chinese Grand Prix

Vettel 'disappointed' to miss out on podium

ESPN Staff
April 14, 2013 « Webber penalised for Vergne clash | McLaren 'not quick enough' - Button »
Sebastian Vettel finished just a car length behind Lewis Hamilton after a late charge © Sutton Images
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Sebastian Vettel admitted that he was "a little bit disappointed" not to finish on the podium in the Chinese Grand Prix.

Starting from ninth on the medium tyre, Vettel made steady progress through the field and rejoined in fourth place after pitting for soft tyres with four laps to go. He proceeded to reel in Kimi Raikkonen and Lewis Hamilton ahead of him and closed right up on Hamilton on the final lap but was unable to find a way past in the closing corners, eventually crossing the line just 0.2s behind the Mercedes.

Vettel said that while he enjoyed the last few laps he was left deflated to miss out on a top three finish by such a small margin.

"It's a shame, I'm a little bit disappointed not to get on the podium because there's nothing for fourth but there's a trophy for third," Vettel said. "It was good fun at the end closing a 13 second gap but I think if you had to look in to where the time was probably lost it was at the beginning of our race where I got stuck a little bit in traffic and lost a little bit too much ground. Obviously we were on the same strategy as everyone else just mirrored. Still good points, but as I said obviously if third is there to grab and you just miss by a couple of corners then it's a little bit disappointing."

Vettel did admit, however, that he didn't think he was able to beat Alonso to win today's race.

"I don't think so, I think Fernando was too quick and if you look at the strategy they started in clean air and did most of the race in clean air whereas I was a bit held up at the beginning. Not blaming anything or anyone, it's just how it is when you start a little bit further back.

"To really match them at the end you have to be fair, Fernando was too quick. But if you look at P2, P3, it wasn't out of reach and there was not much missing. With a few more clean laps in the beginning we could have had a chance but would, could, should; three guys were better today so I hope to be back on the podium next week."