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Q&A with Red Bull’s Sebastian Vettel 19 Apr 2013

Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013 Sebastian Vettel (GER) Red Bull Racing RB9.
Formula One World Championship, Rd4, Bahrain Grand Prix, Practice, Bahrain International Circuit, Sakhir, Bahrain, Friday, 19 April 2013

After the disaster that was China, Red Bull are eager to bounce back in Bahrain this weekend. And following his third place and a very competitive lap time in Friday practice (with team mate Mark Webber second), championship leader Sebastian Vettel is confident they are on the right track…

Q: Sebastian, how was your first practice day here in Bahrain?
Sebastian Vettel:
Overall it went fine, although I was not very happy with my times on low fuel with new tyres as I think I could have been quicker. My guess is that our car is very fast here, even though over a full race distance the tyre management will be crucial again. Now we have to evaluate the data that we collected today, and see how it goes tomorrow, to have a full understanding of what we need to do on Sunday.

My prediction for the race is that we will see as many pit stops as we saw in China, as I think the deterioration will be almost the same. One positive thing for this race seems to be that both tyre compounds are closer to each other than in China, so we won’t necessarily see one of them deteriorating so much more than the other.

For us this means that we have to be able to make the tyres last as long as possible over the full distance, but also push as much as possible on one lap in qualifying. Luckily all of us are in the same boat on this topic.

Q: Do you have the feeling that the pit wall has more and more say over how a race has to run for each individual driver?
SV:
I would not put it into those exact words, as we drivers are sitting in the car and feel how it is responding in different situations, but for sure the pit wall has an overview of what is going on around us - especially with that many pit stops, where one can easily lose the direct overview on who is really in front of you. Still though it is us drivers who make the final decision on how much risk we put into overtaking, so that we avoid getting stuck in traffic, as then the tyres deteriorate much faster. So it is always the best being in the lead, but this is only possible for one of us.

Q: So what will your strategy be for qualifying?
SV:
We know that our car is fast here, so I need to squeeze out everything possible in one lap and then I think we can even be on the very front row.

Q: Looking at the competition, who do you predict will be your strongest rival over this weekend?
SV:
This is not easy to tell as of yet, as I do not know what everyone has been doing today, but it does look like Lotus is fairly strong, as well as Ferrari, with Mercedes a little bit behind. But for sure it will be very tight again among the big teams - so again a lot of revving on Saturday afternoon and a good strategy in the race.

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