• European Grand Prix

'It is tight here' - Vettel

ESPNF1 Staff
June 24, 2011 « HRT progress worries Glock | »
Sebastian Vettel ended the day 0.3s slower than Fernando Alonso © Getty Images

Sebastian Vettel said that the front three teams were closely matched after setting the third fastest time in practice for the European Grand Prix.

Having been quickest in qualifying trim at every race so far, Red Bull is under increased scrutiny this weekend as the ban against changing engine maps between qualifying and the race comes in to force. Vettel said that it was encouraging to be competitive, and that the gap between Red Bull, McLaren and Ferrari would fluctuate from circuit to circuit.

"It is important that we are there or thereabouts, it is tight here," Vettel said. "It changes from circuit to circuit, sometimes the gaps are bigger, sometimes much closer. We got to Australia and we were quite a bit quicker than others, then we get to Malaysia and we had to push hard to be on pole position. That is two weeks and nothing changed on the car, it was just a different track."

Vettel spent part of the morning running without the engine blowing the diffuser off-throttle in preparation for the ban against the practice coming in to force at the British Grand Prix. Vettel joked that the difference was substantial, saying "It was five seconds," before he said the running had given him no cause for concern.

"No, I can understand that it is news to everyone to get some information but I can only say that it will affect everyone when the rules change, but I don't see us suffering from other people more than others. Maybe I will be surprised, maybe not. But from what I judge now, there is nothing to be afraid of."