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Red Bull never had advantage as big as Mercedes' - Vettel

ESPN Staff
May 21, 2014 « Hamilton confident of finding another level | Change of mentality necessary in Monaco - Grosjean »
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Sebastian Vettel says Red Bull never enjoyed the level of domination Mercedes currently has while he was winning in Formula One.

After four consecutive titles, Vettel and Red Bull are a long way off the pace of Mercedes this year and have not been able to challenge for victories. Despite winning nine races in a row at the end of last year, Vettel does not think he ever had the advantage over the rest of the field that Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg have in their Mercedes.

"It's always a different situation, but I think we have never really been in that kind of position," Vettel said. "It's easy now to look back and say we have dominated everything and it was easy, but the way I remember it it was a little bit different to that. Now we are five races into the season and I don't think we ever started a season with five wins as a team. Obviously we have a very different strong finish last year, but if you look at the races the positions and the gaps I think it was a different story. We know what it feels like and what you have to deal with at the top. Now they are in a similar position but it's fair to say they deserve to be there because they did the best job."

Vettel believes Red Bull made progress at the Spanish Grand Prix two weeks ago.

"I think the step we made in Spain was quite good in terms of speed and tyre wear result. I think we have an explanation for it, so we need to confirm and see here and in Canada. Here [in Monaco] it is not a real race track, but historically it has always been a good reference of where you are as a driver, but in terms of ranking it shouldn't be any different."

"You have to respect overall that Mercedes has a very, very strong package, so I guess they will be very strong here. Nico and Lewis are very good around here, so they will be the ones to beat. Maybe we will be a little closer, I think Barcelona was a step in the right direction in terms of race pace. In qualifying they were quite far away, but the target for sure is to put in a very good qualifying because that is already more or less half of the job already done on Saturday."

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