If Ferrari are “sly as a fox” in the Bahrain Grand Prix then Sebastian Vettel thinks they can still rescue some points.
The Scuderia had taken pole at the past two Bahrain GPs. Vettel turned pole into victory back in 2018, while last year Charles Leclerc secured his first pole position in the sport with Vettel making it a Ferrari front-row lockout.
However, one year later neither Ferrari even made it into the top 10 in Bahrain with Vettel qualifying P11 and Leclerc P12.
“It was very tough and tight,” Vettel told reporters back in the paddock.
“I think Sector 2 wasn’t ideal, I was too close to George [Russell], maybe that didn’t help, and I was struggling after the stop and go in the final sector to get the fronts really to work.
“Maybe there was a little bit more [time], so Sector 2 was for sure not super clean. Overall I think it’s more or less where we belong this weekend.
“Tomorrow is the race, and in the race it’s not about one lap, so we’ll see what we can do.”
The 2019 Bahrain Grand Prix may have started very well for Ferrari, but it didn’t finish in a positive fashion.
Leclerc had been well in control of the race, but a first career win at the time was cruelly taken away by an engine issue which demoted him from P1 to P3. Vettel meanwhile crossed the line P5.
Of course this year Ferrari would love a P3 and P5 finish, but their focus is simply on scoring some points, and if they are as “sly as a fox” then Vettel believes his team can do just that.
“This track is very rough, very tough on tyres, and that will be the key tomorrow to manage those,” Vettel explained.
“I think if we are sly as a fox, we have a good chance. If not, then it will be a long race. I still believe that there is a good chance to score some points.”
After Vettel’s P3 finish in Turkey, boosted by a P4 for Leclerc, Ferrari have given themselves a faint hope of challenging for P3 in the Constructors’ Championship.
But with a gap of 24 points to Racing Point in P3 with three rounds left including the Bahrain GP, Ferrari can’t afford anything less than a solid double-points finish if they want to stay in the hunt.