Vettel sets fastest lap, then stalls in F1 tests

Vettel sets fastest lap, then stalls in F1 tests

Vettel sets fastest lap, then stalls in F1 tests

Vettel won the first two races of the season past year, with many people including Mercedes reckoning the German had the fastest vehicle.

Before taking over his Mercedes W10 for the day from team mate Valtteri Bottas, Hamilton used his lunchtime media session to suggest that Ferrari had a half second advantage over Mercedes now.

As for the claim that Mercedes' 2019 vehicle might once again be a temperamental "diva" a la 2017, Bottas answered: "If that's how it is, it doesn't scare me".

"But we don't know because everyone has different engine modes and fuel loads".

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said: "I'm happy to know Hamilton believes we are faster and very strong but I believe Mercedes will be very strong in Australia and it would be completely wrong to think we are faster than them".

"You would have to write off the first races because we would have to freeze our concept until the other one is ready", said Wolff.

"The auto is old now and worn and torn, so we will have new components and all of that stuff will come along", he explained. "We will be analysing a lot from this test and there will be some modifications that we will try to implement for the race, but there is obviously not a lot of time [before Melbourne]".

"Hopefully from this week we will gain another 0.1 seconds from our understanding of the auto", commented Hamilton. "Testing you have to take with a pinch of salt".

"We weren't behind anywhere near as much as that I would say past year", he said of the predicted half second deficit.

"There's no way when you're looking at Global Positioning System to say what fuel load they're on and what engine mode they're on". Now is that because they have their flexi-wings that they've had in the past that drops drag?

"Of course we hope it's not bigger than we might see now and we hope that it's better. So we just have to work towards trying to close that gap that we think might be there, or is there". I think I would like to be faster.

Vettel also damaged the Ferrari on day two of the second test, wiping out much of the Scuderia's running on that day.

"I'm sure Ferrari as a team, probably all the other teams do the same thing, they will look at the other options". In fast corners, the auto was very hard, and it was also very hard to get the setup right.

"We really won't know [until the start of the season]", he continued.

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