Sebastian Vettel says he won't blame his Red Bull RB8 after failing to reach the final ten in qualifying for the Chinese Grand Prix.
Last season, Vettel was the dominant force on Saturday afternoons, claiming a record-breaking 15 pole positions. This year, though, the situation is very different.
Vettel has yet to secure a front row grid slot never mind a pole position and slumped to P11 in Shanghai, missing the cut by five hundredths of a second
"Obviously I'm not happy but as I said I think I was pretty happy with the laps I had in Q2 but they weren't quick enough," said the Red Bull racer.
"Now I could go through another hour but that's a fact.
"We have to start the race from P11 and see what we can do tomorrow. It surely makes it a bit harder but not impossible to do a good race."
Vettel's slump came on the back of a decision to return to the old exhaust configuration that Red Bull ran in the Barcelona pre-season test. While team-mate Mark Webber stuck with the current layout, Vettel reverted.
However, the reigning World Champ says he's not going to lay the blame for his P11 on his car.
"It's always easy to say this and that now, but I was happy with the car yesterday and that's why I decided to stay as we were.
"I was happy with the laps I had in qualifying. There were no mistakes, but they weren't quick enough. It's as easy as that.
"Yesterday I was happy with the car. We decided to stick with the current settings and I don't want to blame it on the car. Three times I did exactly the same lap, and three times it wasn't quick enough to make it into Q3."