Vettel: Still early days

Date published: February 9 2012

Defending World Champion Sebastian Vettel completed a satisfactory return to F1 on Thursday as he put the RB8 through its paces at Jerez…

Defending World Champion Sebastian Vettel completed a satisfactory return to F1 on Thursday as he put the RB8 through its paces at Jerez.

The 24-year-old German posted a best lap of 1:19.297 – the third best time of the day – and completed 96 laps on a very productive day for Red Bull in the south of Spain.

Vettel says he took some time to get back into the swing of things, but is happy with the way the day progressed.

“Let’s see on the second day but on the first day it was promising,” Vettel is quoted as saying by ESPNF1.

“It’s a long way to go, it’s the first day, there’s a lot more to come. We need to understand how the car works and then we can address the problems properly and hopefully tune the development in the right direction but for now it’s just to understand what are the main points for this year; where are the weaknesses and where we can improve. So that’s why it’s important now to run as much as we can.

“In the morning it was quite slippery and it does take a little while to get back in to the rhythm and mainly to understand the car. So that was the priority today for me; find the rhythm and try to understand what the car needs so that we can hopefully push the development in the right direction.”

As usual, most of the teams are still playing cat and mouse games as they try to hide any new concepts, but Vettel feels no one has come up with something extraordinary so far.

“You try to explore things that you haven’t tried before,” he said.

“It’s attention to detail, so I don’t think there’s any big secrets we will find out. If you look at all the cars they are slightly different yes but there is nothing revolutionary.

“Now we wait for the Mercedes and then we’ll know a little bit more. At this stage it’s clear that this year it should be very tight again if not tighter than last year.”

Related Links
Big guns back but Rosberg leads
Jerez gallery: The big guns in action
More day three action