• British Grand Prix - Qualifying

Vettel pleased to avoid controversy

ESPNF1 Staff
July 9, 2011 « Red Bull accepts performance hit ahead of qualifying | »
Sebastian Vettel lost out to Mark Webber by just 0.032s © Sutton Images

Sebastian Vettel said he was trying not to pay attention to the off-throttle diffuser ban and that he just wanted to show Red Bull is still competitive after he took second on the grid for the British Grand Prix.

Vettel was beaten by his Red Bull team-mate Mark Webber for only the second time this year as the team made light of the off-throttle blown diffuser controversy that has been ongoing since the start of the weekend. Vettel told the BBC that he had tried to steer clear of the issue because he couldn't influence it, and that a true picture had yet to be established.

"I tried not to get affected because it's not my business at the end of the day and I can't change it," Vettel said. "I can't go up to the FIA and go 'Look, this is what we like, this is what we want to have, this is what you should do'. It's in their hands and obviously it was quite confusing and I think that's the real shame in hindsight for the people to understand what is really going on and who is affected and who is not.

"I think the best is always to show on the track where you are and we've been very competitive, Ferrari looks very close here, McLaren maybe didn't have the smoothest qualifying so it's very early to say 'Ok we lost, Ferrari didn't and McLaren lost even more'. We'll see tomorrow, I think all of the teams I mentioned will be competitive tomorrow, and then tyres will be playing a much bigger role than some exhausts."

When asked if he had felt more pressure than any other time during this season due to the potential impact on Red Bull, Vettel said he was more worried by the evolving track conditions.

"I wouldn't say the most pressure but it was a difficult session, obviously with the conditions changing. When it starts to rain here it can rain on different parts of the circuit so it's quite difficult to see where it is wet or damp and where it is fine. So you really rely on the out lap or the experience of the lap before because if you arrive flat out and then it's still damp a bit it's very easy to go off track. So all in all I think that wasn't easy but in the end it was dry.

"It was a shame that we couldn't get the second run; I would have loved to have challenge Mark again but I think he had a good lap and all in all I think it was a very good result for us today, especially with the amount of talk going in to that qualifying and in to the race here so it's good to see that we are still on top of our game and we still can produce reasonable quick lap times. So I'm quite happy, tomorrow anything can happen - I think this circuit is quite tough on tyres - so we'll see what we get tomorrow."