Wednesday, 18 July, 2018

Verstappen blames 'power surge' for qualifying crash

GETTYSebastian Vettel won the season opener in Melbourne GETTYSebastian Vettel won the season opener in Melbourne
| 09 April, 2018, 01:33

Yesterday our race pace didn't look bad but I think our auto in second practice, where we did the race runs, wasn't as good as it was in practice one or that it is now.

Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen was third 0.398 seconds off Ricciardo's pace.

The Australian's lap put him fifth on the grid but, after applying Lewis Hamilton's grid penalty, he'll move up to the second row.

"We know that is tougher for us in the race than on one lap performance", said Gasly.

Verstappen had just set set the fourth fastest time in the first round of qualifying when the accident happened.

"The vehicle feels OK, but we still need to find some pace, especially for a single lap", Bottas said.

Daniel Ricciardo expressed mixed emotions at Red Bull's pace during qualifying for the second round of the season in Bahrain.

The Finn was summoned to the stewards afterwards for an unsafe release from the pits but escaped a grid penalty with Ferrari picking up a 5,000 euro (US$6,136.50) fine instead for the misdemeanour.


His best effort on Friday was 0.655 seconds slower than Raikkonen, however, with at least some of that down to the 33-year-old running into traffic on his flying lap. The defending F1 champion had a tricky first session, locking his tires and twice taking his Mercedes too wide on corners.

Ricciardo's team-mate Max Verstappen crashed out of qualifying's first session but Ricciardo was keen to congratulate Red Bull's junior team, Red Bull Toro Rosso Honda.

The spin, followed by a slide into the barrier in this instance, was Verstappen's second in as many weeks, as he spun his auto after sustaining damage to the floor in the season-opening Australian Grand Prix.

Aside from the out-of-position drivers - including Grosjean in 16th while team mate Kevin Magnussen starts sixth - even closely matched cars should be able to fight, with the long pit straight providing a clear overtaking opportunity into Turn 1.

"It was not ideal to miss so much track time".

The second practice session will start at 4 p.m. BST (11 a.m. ET).

"I learned the data immediately once I arrived on the scene of this auto as for me it had been also a significant surprise", Verstappen informed reporters.

Vettel won in Melbourne, profiting from an error by Mercedes to finish ahead of Hamilton.

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