SSao Paulo (AP) – A small screw has become independent in the Ferrari interior of Sebastian Vettel. The foreign body was the first day of testing for the four-time Formula 1 world champion at the Brazilian Grand Prix, but it was not a big deal.
In the fight against the premature K.o. in the constructors' championship Vettel has to rather fine-tune his red race car even better. "The car is fine, but it's not good, so we still have some work to do," summed up Heppenheimer, who was also experimenting with the underbody of his Ferrari. An optimal grade for the qualification (18.00 CET) would obviously be important for the 31 year old. Because Vettel wants to prevent the next Mercedes title on the Autodromo José Carlos Pace.
55 points are the silver arrows before the penultimate race of the season before the Scuderia. A total of 86 counters must be assigned. If Vettel and his stable rival Kimi Raikkonen will not score at least 13 points on Mercedes in Interlagos, the Silver Arrows will be able to cheer for the fifth time in a row on the team's title.
"The last races have been very useful for us because we have learned a lot about the car," said Brazil Vettel, winner of last year after his third best time. "We're still trying to get a sharper picture and understand a little more about what's going on."
Lewis Hamilton and his team-mate Valtteri Bottas, pole-sitter in Brazil in 2017, who were crowned world champions for the fifth time in Mexico just two weeks ago, are on the right track. The Mercedes duo was unbeatable at the end of the heating.
"The car feels better than how it went in Mexico, but we always work through some problems, the speed does not seem too bad," said Hamilton, who managed to win only in 2016 in Sao Paulo.
A question mark should once again be behind the tires. Mercedes has had to fight in the last two races with significant tire wear. Saturdays and Sundays temperatures should rise again. "It could be difficult for the tires," noted Vettel.