Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel admits that he’s still slightly lacking in confidence at the Autodromo Nazionale Monza, following Friday practice for the Italian Grand Prix.
“I don’t yet have the confidence I want and need round here,” Vettel said at the end of the day’s track activity.
“There are a couple of things that we need to do better. Like with the car balance and the stability under braking, which is important around here to get the confidence.
“With the low downforce here you need to have the confidence to just throw the car in and stop thinking about it. We are not where I think we can be yet.
“I’m not entirely happy because we had a bit of a mixed run with a lot of traffic and the virtual safety car,” Vettel continued. “It wasn’t the ideal long run we were looking for but I guess it was the same for everyone.
“All in all we have enough data to go through and improve a couple of things for tomorrow then we can be better.
“We are not yet where I think we can be but we should be a bit better tomorrow,” he added. “We can improve the car and if we sort a couple of things out, we should be in better shape.”
- FP2: Bottas pips Hamilton as Mercedes stay top in Monza
Vettel admitted earlier this week that the Mercedes was better suited to Monza than the Ferrari. Friday’s two 90-minute practice sessions appeared to confirm that.
“We know they are very strong around here,” he said on Friday. “It’s an engine track, a power circuit. That’s their strength the last couple of years.
“They are very quick. They were quick whenever they went out, which is what we expected,” he continued. “For sure we’ll be quicker than today, how much? I don’t know.”
Vettel was over a second off Hamilton’s pace on FP1, but reduced the margin to the two Mercedes to under two tenths after lunch.
His team mate Kimi Raikkonen was close behind, and was fourth fastest in both sessions despite not being happy with his car.
“I had quite a difficult feeling. It was not the easiest car to drive today,” the Finn said. “I just didn’t feel easy to put the car where you wanted it and drive hard.
“We have some work to be done for tomorrow. If we get it more like we want it, then it should be better and go a little bit faster.”
“I’m sure when we do the normal work and improve the things it will become an easier car to drive. We will be able to improve quite a bit,” he added. “Where it’s going to take us tomorrow, I don’t know.”
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