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Sebastian Vettel Q&A: A fresh engine, and aiming for pole 28 Aug 2009

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB5.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, Belgian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Friday, 28 August 2009 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB5.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, Belgian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Friday, 28 August 2009 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing signs autographs for the fans.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, Belgian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Friday, 28 August 2009 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB5.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, Belgian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Friday, 28 August 2009 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB5.
Formula One World Championship, Rd 12, Belgian Grand Prix, Practice Day, Spa-Francorchamps, Belgium, Friday, 28 August 2009

The big question hanging over the rest of Sebastian Vettel’s season is how Red Bull will handle the fact that he only has two new engines left. After Valencia team principal Christian Horner indicated that an engine penalty is a real possibility at some point, but said they are also prepared to run used engines to a higher mileage. No surprise then that Vettel limited his Friday running at Spa, but with a fresh V8 going into the RB5 overnight, the German is still confident for qualifying…

Q: Sebastian, has today’s tenth place in the second practice session any other reason than treating the engine with care?
Sebastian Vettel:
I think today was quite okay as I think that some of the guys in the front were running on a really low fuel load. At the end of the session we also tried to run a little lower to find out what is possible and I think that was no bad idea.

Q: Are you satisfied overall with how it went for you today?
SV:
It was clear that I would make less laps then the others, but still I think it went well for me. We have to see tomorrow as you can never be exactly sure about the fuel loads used by the other teams and where you realistically are.

Q: Coming back to the number of engines that you have available for the rest of the season: are you listening more carefully now to what noise is coming from behind you?
SV:
No not really, because if you do then probably what you want to avoid is really happening - some sort of self-fulfilling prophecy. You concentrate on running and as long as there is a sound behind you everything is okay.

Q: Did you enjoy driving today?
SV:
It was really great. For us drivers this is one of the best race tracks of the whole season. The fast corners - especially the last two - are really fun. After Hungary and Valencia that are relatively slow tracks, to come here and really let it go, that’s a great feeling. Here you really feel the car and understand what it’s like to drive a Formula One car.

Q: Do you have a favourite part of the track. Eau Rouge seems to be the most popular, but what’s your personal taste?
SV:
It’s Turns 10/11. Here you’re going around 250km/h, you arrive in seventh and downshift one gear - that’s the most challenging part of the track for me.

Q: Are you running a new engine tomorrow?
SV:
Yes.

Q: After evaluating today’s data, and with a new engine, where do you see yourself tomorrow?
SV:
I do not expect a dramatic change tomorrow as the season so far has shown that the engine does not lose too much power with a higher mileage, so it should be okay tomorrow.

Q: Even good enough for the pole position?
SV:
That is the aim. Today the times where closer together than you would have expected at a track like Spa and although the Brawns where a bit in the back today they will be strong again tomorrow. Let’s wait and see what happens, but clearly we want to put in a good time and bring the car to the front of the grid.

Q: Can you give a comparison of your car to the Brawns - where you have a better car and where you have a weaker one?
SV:
First of all I would say that our car looks much nicer! Other than that, I think this circuit suits the RB5. But today it was tricky to make a final statement of where we are. The gap to the Brawn looks bigger than it is in reality and my prediction for tomorrow is that it will be very close. But again: we are in good shape and should do well in qualifying.