'Bulls lack of pace no secret'

Monday 03-March-2014 08:05

Although Sebastian Vettel is aware Red Bull are down on pace, he concedes there are "bigger problems" they first need to solve.

The reigning World Champion covered just 77 laps in the final Bahrain test having been sidelined on Saturday with various problems.

That, though, was at least four more than he covered in the previous test at the Sakhir circuit - which was also a step up from the 11 he managed in Jerez.

But while his mileage may have been on the up and up, his lap times were not.

Vettel finished the Bahrain test with a best time of 1:37.468, which was over four seconds short of the week's best.

"We are," he said when asked if he was worried about Red Bull's pace. "It's not a secret.

"For sure we cannot do the times that the guys at the top of are doing for a couple of reasons but at the moment we have bigger problems to solve than just the pace."

Despite the team's ongoing woes, which have hit both Vettel and his new team-mate Daniel Ricciardo, the reigning World Champ insists Red Bull are not letting it get them down.

"Everybody's fine.

"It's quite a difficult time because it's a difficult car to work on and you can see as well for the other teams, if you have downtime depending on where the damage is, where the problem is it's a big job to repair and fix it. That's why it takes a long time.

"Yesterday two issues were bad enough to basically stop us from running the whole day. Today we had some problems but were running for the whole day, so it just shows how different every day can be. But I'm happy we did a lot of laps."

But despite reliability issues coupled with the lack of speed, Vettel is not ruling Red Bull's chances come Australia.

"It's very difficult. Obviously I'm not calling ourselves the favourites for that, we haven't done enough laps.

"The speed is not there compared to some other teams so we have to wait and see when we get there."

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