• German Grand Prix - FP2

Vettel impressed by early McLaren pace

ESPN Staff
July 20, 2012 « Webber content with Friday practice | 'We come here to win' - McLaren »
Sebastian Vettel was third quickest in the afternoon session after being 12th in FP1 © Press Association

Sebastian Vettel said that Red Bull could not match McLaren's pace in dry conditions at Hockenheim but warned against reading too much in to the Friday practice times.

McLaren has brought a major upgrade package to the German Grand Prix in order to try and close the gap to Red Bull and Ferrari and immediately topped the timesheets during a dry FP1. Wet weather in FP2 made the times tough to analyse as Pastor Maldonado was quickest, and Vettel said McLaren looked strong but that Red Bull can unlock more pace in dry conditions.

"They looked very competitive this morning - no doubt - we couldn't go at that pace but I think we were not entirely happy this morning," Vettel said. "You know, it's a Friday, it's difficult to draw conclusions; they looked very competitive in Silverstone on Friday as well and then their weekend was not so good."

When asked what he could learn during the afternoon session, Vettel admitted he was mainly just getting comfortable with the wet track.

"I think mostly you try to obviously get used to the conditions. It's not impossible that we might have some rain tomorrow and on Sunday, the weather forecast is not looking great so we'll see. Obviously we would have loved to have had a dry session, especially this afternoon to get a couple of runs to be able to test a couple of things on the car. If the conditions are like that - changing all the time and you are between extremes, then intermediates, and the circuit is drying, half dry and half wet - then it's difficult to get a proper read."

Vettel also revealed that Red Bull didn't have any major new parts but said it didn't mean it was unaffected by the lack of dry track time.

"We're always pushing and always having little bits here and there. We had no major upgrade; I think there's nothing you can see. We would have loved to have dry conditions just to see how the car works, how we feel, and that's the only chance you get to get consistent laps and an answer on whatever you want to test. Maybe we'll have a bit more time tomorrow, I'm not sure what the weather forecast is - probably not that good - so we'll see what we get."