Vettel well clear ahead of rivals in second practice

2013 Italian Grand Prix second practice

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Monza, 2013No one could get within six-tenths of a second of Sebastian Vettel during the second practice session at Monza.

Vettel’s quickest time on hard tyres was faster than anyone else could manage on mediums. When he put the softer tyres on he trimmed his time by three-tenths of a second to head the charts on a 1’24.453.

The world champion was the only driver to post a sub-85 second lap. Mark Webber made it a one-two for Red Bull, bouncing back from a KERS problem at the beginning of the session to set a best time of 1’25.116.

He was followed by the two Lotus drivers, both of which set laps which were identical to the nearest thousandth of a second. This was despite Kimi Raikkonen running the longer-wheelbase version of the E21 while Romain Grosjean used the conventional car.

Fernando Alonso put his Ferrari in the top five, albeit 0.877s off Vettel after running wide at Lesmo 2 during one of his runs. Several other drivers went off during the session.

Among them was Lewis Hamilton, who ran wide at the exit of Parabolica, as Raikkonen also had earlier on. Hamilton ended the session sixth followed by team mate Nico Rosberg.

Felipe Massa was eighth despite pitting before the end of the session with a gearbox problem. The two McLaren drivers completed the top ten, both over a second off the flying Vettel.

Pos. No. Driver Car Best lap Gap Laps
1 1 Sebastian Vettel Red Bull-Renault 1’24.453 39
2 2 Mark Webber Red Bull-Renault 1’25.076 0.623 39
3 7 Kimi Raikkonen Lotus-Renault 1’25.116 0.663 36
4 8 Romain Grosjean Lotus-Renault 1’25.116 0.663 40
5 3 Fernando Alonso Ferrari 1’25.330 0.877 38
6 10 Lewis Hamilton Mercedes 1’25.340 0.887 39
7 9 Nico Rosberg Mercedes 1’25.367 0.914 42
8 4 Felipe Massa Ferrari 1’25.519 1.066 29
9 5 Jenson Button McLaren-Mercedes 1’25.532 1.079 42
10 6 Sergio Perez McLaren-Mercedes 1’25.627 1.174 39
11 14 Paul di Resta Force India-Mercedes 1’25.830 1.377 40
12 12 Esteban Gutierrez Sauber-Ferrari 1’25.888 1.435 40
13 15 Adrian Sutil Force India-Mercedes 1’26.028 1.575 37
14 16 Pastor Maldonado Williams-Renault 1’26.138 1.685 36
15 18 Jean-Eric Vergne Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’26.224 1.771 32
16 11 Nico Hulkenberg Sauber-Ferrari 1’26.385 1.932 43
17 19 Daniel Ricciardo Toro Rosso-Ferrari 1’26.599 2.146 43
18 17 Valtteri Bottas Williams-Renault 1’27.198 2.745 44
19 23 Max Chilton Marussia-Cosworth 1’27.548 3.095 37
20 20 Charles Pic Caterham-Renault 1’27.696 3.243 37
21 21 Giedo van der Garde Caterham-Renault 1’27.771 3.318 38
22 22 Jules Bianchi Marussia-Cosworth 1’28.057 3.604 32

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105 comments on Vettel well clear ahead of rivals in second practice

  1. Diceman (@diceman) said on 6th September 2013, 14:35

    Looks like another boring Vettel-weekend ahead.

    • DaveD (@daved) said on 6th September 2013, 14:41

      Yeah, I’m afraid you’re right. The 2014 rule changes can’t come fast enough for me. At least there is a chance things will get shaken up and provide a little mystery for us.

    • Linda1 said on 6th September 2013, 14:56

      why is a weekend boring just because vettel may win?

      vettel may well run away at the front but with 21 other drivers racing over 21 other places, no race is ever boring!
      vettal ran away & hid at spa 2 weeks ago yet it was still a great race with lots of good racing taking place throughout the field.

      if you only care about the lead & who wins then your not really watching the race, your just watching the lead.

      • Hamilfan (@hamilfan) said on 6th September 2013, 15:06

        Let me tell you in vettel’s own way :

        OBVIOUSLY , it matters who wins

      • petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 6th September 2013, 15:25

        Spa last week was not a great race. It was one of the least interesting ones so far this year. A few motorway passes and no battle for the lead. The qualifying session was more thrilling!

        I’m not saying that Vettel winning by miles ensure that a race will be boring but it certainly takes one potentially exciting element out of the equation.

      • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 15:28

        F1 is to some extent about unpredictability. The gripping nature of the fact that literally anything could happen every a car goes out on track is one of the great appeals of the sport. When you know pretty much who is going to win by FP2, that takes away that great appeal.

        However, you are right, Bahrain, for instance, was a thoroughly entertaining race, despite the fact that there was absolutely no battle for the lead whatsoever. But there is another factor coming into play here. If Vettel can win at a canter, which he almost certainly will on Sunday, then is it really a challenge?

        F1 is the pinnacle of motorsport, and is meant to be the ultimate challenge for the best drivers, engineers and designers in the world, but is a grand prix weekend a challenge anymore for Vettel and Red Bull? It’s almost like its just an elongated test weekend that culminates in a champagne afternoon tea on Sunday…oh, and there are 21 other guys on track.

        I don’t suppose you remember a rather outrageous interview Ross Brawn gave in 2003, in which he essentially admitted that the F2002 was so far ahead of its rivals that development was stopped prematurely because of the points gap and that they often sacrificed performance in their setup to make the car easy to drive. I really hope that scenario doesn’t reemerge with Vettel and Red Bull in the final chapter of this season. Instead of a cruise to the flag, it would be nice to Vettel under a modicum of pressure.

        • Younger Hamii (@younger-hamii) said on 6th September 2013, 16:43

          I really hope that scenario doesn’t reemerge with Vettel and Red Bull in the final chapter of this season.

          Irrespective of how dominant Red Bull, namely Vettel, has been, I highly doubt that would be the case. The grid compared to the grid a decade ago is closer and more competitive, McLaren and Williams were Ferrari’s only challengers while Red Bull now has Ferrari, McLaren, Lotus and Mercedes, the latter two more recently, to compete with. Car development, another factor, is substantially more finite than a decade ago with in-season testing all but limited greatly, a foot off the throttle pedal for Red Bull would be almost suicidal for their title aspirations.

        • The gripping nature of the fact that literally anything could happen every a car goes out on track is one of the great appeals of the sport.

          F1 has never been high on unpredictability. The chance of a Caterham winning on Sunday is close to nil, isn’t it? There is a very high probability that one of five drivers will win the next race – since only five drivers have won a race so far this season. Even before the season begun you could have – and bookies did – make some pretty accurate predictions about which drivers stood a half-way decent shot at the WDC.

          One of the things about F1 which IS very predictable is the way so many fans completely overreact to every single up and down over the course of the season. After Friday practice at Spa ..” Red Bull are unbeatable!”. After Saturday qualifying … “Mercedes are very quick!” After Sundays race … Red Bull are unbeatable!” Rather like the way after the Hungarian GP everybody was going “Hamilton can win six more races and take this title race down to the wire!”

          Nothing has changed from what it was yesterday, or even from a few hours ago. In all probability Mercedes will lock out the front row tomorrow. (And then we’ll hear once again about how amazed they are) Nobody knows what Sunday will bring, mostly because it’s expected to rain.

        • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 19:50

          @younger-hamii The real difference between now and a decade ago in terms of the field spread is the size of the gaps between the cars. Back then it was not unusual to have 6 or even 7 tenth differences between teammates in qualifying, however now being 0.3 slower than your teammate is rather shameful. Also engineers in the early 2000s had a much bigger window of adjustment to work in, so it was relatively easy to gain say 0.5 with setup, and the inconsistent nature of the grip from the grooved tyres meant that a driver could go and find much larger chunks of time than a they can now. F1 is much more professional now, and F1 teams operate much closer to their optimum for a much greater percentage of the time, meaning that gaining even a small amount of time on another team is extremely difficult.

          On a separate note, lets assume the championship is in similar state after the Singapore GP, the race where most teams plan to bring their final 2013 package. Are Ferrari, Mercedes and Lotus going to continue 2013 development with the imposing prospect of 2014 looming ahead? No. Is it therefore much of a penalty if Red Bull also cease their 2013 development? No.

          @jonsan You reckon F1 is predictable? How many people would have bet on McLaren having zero podiums in 2013 by 12th round of the season? How many people would have predicted a win for Alonso at the 2012 Malaysian GP? Or for Maldonado at the 2012 Spanish GP? How many people would have predicted that on a super hot, rear limited race track Hamilton would take his first win of the season by over 12 seconds, having had a car that had eaten its tyres only a few weeks before? F1 is never predictable. What is predictable though, is that the incredible race pace Red Bull and particularly Vettel will be nigh on unbeatable, grid slot regardless.

          If you absorb these passing media fads, then I’m afraid you either listen too much to Johnny Herbert or Simon Lazenby on Sky F1, or you visit the BBC F1 page at take it remotely seriously. In the measured, subjective world of Autosport and of F1 Fanatic these things are simply accepted as minor fluctuations or diversion from the main course of F1 2013; that of Vettel and Red Bull domination.

          I most definitely agree with you when you say nothing has changed. Red Bull still have the fastest car, as they had in Spa, Hungary, Germany and so on. And nothing would have changed from the previous three qualifying sessions if Hamilton takes his fifth consecutive pole, because it would still be an illustration of how Hamilton’s immense qualifying pace can flatter car that has in fact been behind the Red Bull in qualy trim since Silverstone. Indeed, we don’t know what will happen on Sunday, especially if it rains, but we do know that Vettel was on pole in the wet in Australia, Malaysia and Canada, and is arguably the grid’s finest wet weather driver, so I doubt even rain could dampen the a weekend that is turning out to be “The Sebastian Vettel Show” once again.

          • @william-brierty I’m not convinced at all that the Mercedes hasn’t been the fastest qualifying car since Silverstone: Rosberg ran into trouble in Germany, Hungary we only really had Vettel and Hamilton as benchmarks and in the wet (as they had a wet set-up) Mercedes were faster. Sure, Red Bull may have closed the gap since Silverstone but by no means is it conclusive that Red Bull have had a faster car in qualifying.

          • if Hamilton takes his fifth consecutive pole, because it would still be an illustration of how Hamilton’s immense qualifying pace can flatter car that has in fact been behind the Red Bull in qualy trim since Silverstone.

            Wow. It’s true what they say – denial isn’t just a river in Egypt.

      • zoom (@zoomracing) said on 6th September 2013, 15:52

        Is boring because there is no competition in the top. Not Vettel’s fault anyway.

        • JCost (@jcost) said on 6th September 2013, 16:12

          It’s Newey’s fault then.

        • DaveD (@daved) said on 6th September 2013, 20:55

          Just like it’s Usain Bolt’s fault that the 100m is a foregone conclusion at a big world championship. Unless Bolt is screwing around and not training, it’s pretty much a race for 2nd place. But at least in the 100m, the broadcasters can’t cut everyone else out of the TV frame!

          • uan (@uan) said on 7th September 2013, 4:42

            @daved
            “But at least in the 100m, the broadcasters can’t cut everyone else out of the TV frame!”

            actually, when Vettel is way out in the front, you rarely see him on the tv feed.

          • DaveD (@daved) said on 7th September 2013, 13:44

            Yep, and that’s the ironic part. You don’t really even get to see “Bolt”, because he’s usually out of the frame…instead you get to watch the two guys going for 2nd place and nobody else LOL

      • DaveD (@daved) said on 6th September 2013, 20:52

        if you only care about the lead & who wins then your not really watching the race, your just watching the lead.

        Considering the feed we get here in America only shows the car in front and maybe one or two other close actions during the day…what choice do you think I have? LOL

        We don’t get multiple feeds or an intelligent enough provider to provide us with more information or different cameras to watch the action. I’d LOVE to see what is going on with Bianchi in the back as I think the kid has some skills that would go well with a better car.
        I Love the Hulk…but I’m lucky if he enters the frame for 30 seconds during the race.

        I sit and stare at the live telemetry numbers on the internet like some poor geek in a Matrix re-hash, trying to pick out what’s going on.

    • Uncle Ben (@uncleben) said on 6th September 2013, 15:21

      Some rain could still save it.

    • JCost (@jcost) said on 6th September 2013, 16:10

      Ferrari needs a quali, if Alonso makes it two second row he will be in front before first pit stops and maybe Mercedes finds some pace overnight, we never know.

      • Robbie said on 6th September 2013, 16:36

        I am definitely one of those who appreciates that anything can happen in a race and often does, so I don’t get that freaked about someone ‘always’ running away with it. That said, I also would rather not see a Championship decided with a handful of races still to go in the season, but sometimes that’s just how it works out. Of course it is always more exciting if the WDC isn’t decided until the final race and is with at least 2 drivers having a reasonable shot, but no series can ever guarantee that.

        My thing on this really is …. when it looks like SV may run away with this weekend and thus the season, and of course it’s only practice and we don’t know, but let’s say this weekend and for the next race or two most people start to get the impression SV won’t be interrupted from another WDC, then why do they need these gadgety tires and DRS that most people seem to totally disagree with? ie. Obviously these things are not stopping a driver from making it look like a cakewalk and possibly making the season look like one too, so they should at least get away from the fake, manufactured passing that the gadgety tires and DRS provide, and figure out a better formula. And I don’t think it should have to take a whole revamp of engines and chassis to do that. If in fact that even does the trick. I think ultimately F1′s addiction to downforce has to be curtailed.

    • Jason (@jason12) said on 6th September 2013, 17:00

      It’s not Vettel’s fault that other teams can’t compete.

  2. Chris (@tophercheese21) said on 6th September 2013, 14:35

    Dam.

  3. DaveD (@daved) said on 6th September 2013, 14:39

    Mark Webber had a KERS problem

    Every Formula 1 story should start with that line, and then go from there. They could just cut and paste that quote and make it the first line to get it out of the way because it’s inevitable. And every post race story could also add the line:

    Webber had a terrible start and lost at least 3 positions

  4. ME4ME (@me4me) said on 6th September 2013, 14:40

    OK, that was impressive from Vettel. Looks like he wants to put an end to the WDC fight asap

    • bananarama (@bananarama) said on 6th September 2013, 15:20

      He had especially great speed through Parabolica, which is not surprising, but since it’s practice who knows what fuel was in which car. His long run pace looked good, the tyres barely gave up .. yet I’ll only give up on the Ferrari 1-2 on sunday around 15:30 (local time) ;)

  5. rankx (@rankx22) said on 6th September 2013, 14:51

    Well, at least the Mercs could hide some speed.

  6. If the RBR is faster at Monza then either

    a) They have fine tuned their car to the speed tracks compared to the Aero Tracks of Asia. so there is a chance that they are not fast in the Aero tracks of Asia. That is good news for rivals.

    Or

    b) They have fined their car too well that it is fast even in a circuit like Monza which is definitely not great news for rivals.

    • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 15:08

      @tmax Unfortunately it is definitely b). Red Bull have arguably done the least of all of the top teams to tune their aero package to the high speed tracks of Spa and Monza, and aside from trimming the wing angles, adopting a “tea-tray”, reducing the area of the uppermost element of the front wing and a new nose cone, their aero package is largely the same as it was in Hungary. That most emphatically does not bode well for the remainder of the season.

    • If you check the top speed of Red Bull and compare it to the others you’ll see the following stats:

      Ferrari qualyfing trim (empty fuel tank): 336 Kph
      Ferrari race trim (top fuel) during the long stint: from 319 to 324 Kph

      Mercedes qualyfing trim: 337 Kph
      Mercedes race trim: from 321 to 324 Kph

      Red Bull qualyfing trim: 328 Kph
      Red Bull race trim: 328 Kph

      Quite interesting stats…

    • @tmax @williambrierty is pretty much spot-on: Red Bull simply slim down the rear wing (not even the front) and bam, they have a quick car on high speed circuits. It’s all due to the diffuser – since they run consistent downforce at the rear of the car, they don’t even have to touch the front on high-speed tracks. So sadly for the championship battle, their car is quick everywhere. Everywhere.

  7. WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 15:02

    In F1, you are only ever giving pressure of receiving it, and there are quite a few guys out there under a lot of pressure at the moment.

    Raikkonen is suffering amidst the swirling rumours regarding his future, and is about sign a contract crucial in deciding whether he will able to fight for the championship in future years.

    Alonso is seeing an ever widening rift between him and senior Ferrari players put his future under threat, whilst he is having to face the reality of watching Sebastian Vettel take the championship for the fourth consecutive year.

    Rosberg is struggling to keep a can on Hamilton, and despite his meticulous nature and diligence, is struggling to match the speed of his teammate, who is equally struggling to understand an all new brake material.

    Massa has all but been written off for a Ferrari drive my the media for the fourth year in succession, and is being linked not to a scarlet F1 car but to a comfy retirement home.

    Button is having to face the prospect that he is wasting arguably the finest years of his career waiting for the Honda engines to arrive in 2015, and is facing the prospect of another potentially challenging year in 2014.

    One man is exempt. Liberated from the pressure of championship rivals breathing down his neck, the tyre degradation Red Bull suffered early in the season and the prospect of having Raikkonen sat across from him next year, Sebastian Vettel’s geoxs must be a very comfortable pair of shoes to be in. He is staring a fourth championship in the face whilst heading to a series of tracks that he has dominated on in previous years, and is driving a car that seems to be getting better and better with each race, and is looking set for another win in Monza.

    The championship is over, and Red Bull look set to rock up to every grand prix remaining this year with a car comfortably quicker than the opposition, but to those that think F1 is now boring, I disagree. F1 is now predictable, not boring. However to throw some spice back into the mix, to put Vettel under the pressure he is so alien to, there are a few unpredictable factors surrounding next year. Enter the 2014 regs, James Allison and hopefully a Daniel Ricciardo that is super quick…

    • Hamilfan (@hamilfan) said on 6th September 2013, 15:09

      The tale is nice .. is there a twist somewhere, I wonder ?

    • Yobo01 (@yobo01) said on 6th September 2013, 15:45

      Oh, wow. We have just seen FP2 in Monza and you are already saying that Vettel will win everything from here to the end of the championship?
      Wow.

      • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 16:37

        @yobo01 It don’t think that is a remotely premature thing to say. Put it this way, we are on the verge of a substantial regulation change, and Ferrari are nearly 50 points behind in the drivers championship, with Mercedes and Hamilton 60 behind. What is the point of throwing the kitchen sink at the car in a desperate, yet inevitably remote chance of winning the championship if we may see some of the advantage Red Bull currently holds get curtailed by the 2014 regs anyway? Although Alonso and Hamilton may appear to be claiming to say they are still in with a chance, they, and more importantly their teams know that it is over, and have almost certainly already directed the majority of their developmental resource to the 2014 season. And that leaves us with the current status quo, with Red Bull way out front. In 2012 the close championship saw a continued development battle and the advantage swinging between McLaren and Red Bull in the second half of the season, but in 2013 that is not the case. If Vettel had an E21 or if Alonso had an RB9 then we’d have an interesting championship on our hands, but Vettel has both the points and the performance, and I don’t think it is remotely unreasonable to expect Vettel to in with a very real chance of winning most of the remaining races.

        • Yobo01 (@yobo01) said on 6th September 2013, 17:01

          @william-brierty This morning everyone was saying “wow, it looks close at the front”, after a couple of hours everyone predicts a walk in the park for Vettel. Maybe tomorrow a Mercedes will be on pole and there will be people who believe that Mercedes can fight for the victory.
          What I want to say is that saying these kind of things after friday is a bit premature.

          I agree with you that Vettel is very close to his fourth championship, and I know that Ferrari and Mercedes will not develop their car if they don’t see any chance of winning. Domenicali said that they are bringing upgrades until Singapore. If the championship situation doesn’t improve, they are going to switch to 2014. And I definitely think Red Bull will do the same, because 2014 is very important to them, too.

          But I don’t see Vettel winning easily the next 8 races, because Mercedes is still quite strong on high downforce tracks and Ferrari has improved a lot recently. They are all going to be without major upgrades, so I don’t see Red Bull winning comfortably the next 8 races.

          • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 18:35

            @yobo01 I am not talking about 0.6 second gap when I predict Vettel’s dominance, because it looked quite clear to me onboard that Vettel was running lower fuel than anyone else on his qualy run. But Vettel’s race pace is inescapable. OK, we don’t know the fuel loads, but we equally know that Red Bull tend not to run lowish fuel on race runs; what’s the point? To scare everyone? It really doesn’t matter what the grid looks like when you have race pace like that, and with Pirelli going super conservative on compounds following the British GP debacle, it’s not like tyre deg is going to kick in to aid Lotus and Ferrari.

            With regards to the season as a whole, you quite rightly say that the Singapore GP is the perquisite developmental cut-off point. Assuming the championship situation looks equally dire after Singapore, all teams, including Red Bull will put all of their efforts into 2014 as you so quite rightly say. And without pendulum shifts of a developmental battle we will be left with the current status quo, i.e. the RB9 being uttered dominant, and going into track that historically suit the Red Bull. Red Bull may not win every remaining race, but they will almost certainly arrive at each with comfortably the fastest car. Remember the later stages of 2011? Well prepare to experience some deja vu.

    • Will Dan turn out to be a Lewis or a Perez ? an interesting thing to watch !!!!

      • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 16:45

        @tmax Indeed, in fact despite the prospect of the RB10 being potentially less competitive than its predecessors, Ricciardo is one of the things I’m most looking forward to about the F1 2014 season.

      • Todfod (@todfod) said on 6th September 2013, 17:39

        @tmax . I doubt he would even be a Perez. He looks more like a post 2009 Massa to me

        • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 19:56

          @todfod Harsh. No, Ricciardo will be more like a 2010 spec Hulkenberg. A bit inconsistent and erratic to start with, but getting ever stronger, faster and measured as the season progresses, perhaps even culminating in a similar glory Hulkenberg showered himself in when he got pole in Brazil; perhaps even manifesting itself in a win for Ricciardo.

    • Younger Hamii (@younger-hamii) said on 6th September 2013, 16:52

      The elements that can stop the Darth Vader esque Sebastian Vettel :)

      Formula 1 2014 – A New Hope!

      • WilliamB (@william-brierty) said on 6th September 2013, 18:40

        @younger-hamii Only the elements can stop Sebastian Vettel…..errrr, actually he was on pole in the wet in Australia, Canada and Malaysia and is arguably the finest wet weather driver out there, so no, not even the elements can stop Voldemor…er, Sebastian Vettel. James Allison make the 2014 Ferrari fast! I implore you!!!! Pleeeeease!!!! You are my Professor Dumbledore!

        • Younger Hamii (@younger-hamii) said on 6th September 2013, 22:36

          @william-brierty Arguably the finest driver in the wet, hence why last qualifying session to occur in mixed/wet conditions was the last race and I clearly remember Hamilton being on pole and as for Canada, I also remember Lewis being on course to pip Vettel’s time before running wide at the final chicane.

          The elements (weather, strategy etc) can do any driver a major favour my friend – and don’t panic there’s Paddy Lowe at Mercedes, Rory Byrne and James Allison at Ferrari and all the intellectual engineers and designers at McLaren who can stop Adrian Newey :)

    • Eric (@baron-2) said on 7th September 2013, 1:31

      You know @william-brierty, I’ve been reading a lot of comments lately (yours included) about either the disappointment that Raikkonen is not going to drive for Red Bull next year or the desire/believe that with Raikkonen next to Vettel, Vettel would have had a much harder time. Some even go as far to say Vettel wouldn’t have been champion once if he was partnered with Raikkonen instead of Webber.

      But, I can’t help wonder if any of that is actually true. Don’t get me wrong, I like Raikkonen and I think he’s a great driver. But how exactly would he put more pressure on Vettel than Webber did? Sure, he would get off the line by using the accelerator instead of the brake pedal but as opposed to Webber Raikkonen is not a qualifying specialist. Raikkonen admits this frequently.
      So, naturally, Raikkonen would already be one or a few places down from where Webber would be before the race even starts (of course this factors in a Red Bull that isn’t 1.7 seconds clear of the field).
      This means the only way for Raikkonen to really put pressure on Vettel is to be faster than Vettel in race pace. And not just faster but a great deal faster for he would have to overtake cars in between Vettel and himself first before closing in on Vettel. Let alone overtake him. All the while Vettel can control his pace, prolong tyre life and save fuel.

      I’m sorry but I find it highly unlikely that Raikkonen would put pressure on Vettel unless Raikkonen starts to improve his qualifying game.

      @younger-hamii

      These fine gentleman have been in F1 for some time now. That didn’t stop Newey from winning 9 constructors championships before.

  8. svarun (@svarun) said on 6th September 2013, 15:02

    Somehow,Vettel’s pace looks ominous.The question is that Mercs had answer to red bull in Q3 but this week it looks tough.
    Just waiting for 2014,this red bull dominance is making it boring,for me atleast.

  9. Murathime Xola said on 6th September 2013, 15:06

    Nooooooooooo!

  10. Another Vettel resurgent..oh no, he is already WAY ahead.

  11. Quick Nick (@tasvat001) said on 6th September 2013, 15:26

    Clutching at straws here, but hoping Ferrari,merc are running highier downforce levels in the anticipation of rain on sunday

  12. petebaldwin (@petebaldwin) said on 6th September 2013, 15:35

    The Mercs (well… Hamilton) will be there in qualifying and will put pressure on Vettel. Sadly, once the lights go out on Sunday, I can only see Vettel driving off into the distance in another DRS-fueled borefest.

    Is it just me or has the effect of DRS massively improved races at the dull tracks where passing is difficult but ruined the classic tracks?

    • Mike Dee (@mike-dee) said on 6th September 2013, 16:12

      Don’t think DRS will have a huge effect here as the wings are very small anyway. Not that I like DRS.

    • @petebaldwin

      Is it just me or has the effect of DRS massively improved races at the dull tracks where passing is difficult but ruined the classic tracks?

      Not just you. I am thinking exactly the same.
      DRS is only balanced on the rubbish tracks, but because FIA doesn’t care at all about balancing DRS on the better overtaking circuits, well then we end up with races like Spa, usual classics, ruined by the DRS. While Abu Dhabi and Valencia has some great “races” just because DRS isn’t overpowered massively. At SPA DRS is more like a “godmode” from a video game, then an overtaking assist.
      All this DRS nonsense is just incredibly frustrating.

  13. John H (@john-h) said on 6th September 2013, 15:47

    I remember on F1FLive at Spa there was a chance of rain at the end of the race, and I was praying for it – except there were some comments saying “you shouldn’t have to rely on rain” and “I hte people who pray for rain in a race” and all that. I have to say I don’t care what these people say, I am an F1 Fanatic and I want some rain in Monza and I’m not ashamed to admit it !!! Come on clouds, you can do it!

  14. mnmracer (@mnmracer) said on 6th September 2013, 16:01

    Räikkönen won the Australian Grand Prix with a 12 second lead.
    Vettel won the Malaysian Grand Prix with a 12 second lead (over Mercedes).
    Alonso won the Chinese Grand Prix with a 10 second lead.
    Vettel won the Bahrain Grand Prix with a 9 second lead.
    Alonso won the Spanish Grand Prix with a 9 second lead.
    Rosberg won the Monaco Grand Prix with a 4 second lead.
    Vettel won the Canadian Grand Prix with a 14 second lead.
    Rosberg won the British Grand Prix with a 1 second lead.
    Vettel won the German Grand Prix with a 1 second lead.
    Hamilton won the Hungarian Grand Prix with a 10 second lead.
    Vettel won the Belgian Grand Prix with a 17 second lead.

    So tell me, how exactly is “Vettel is winning” any more “OMG! End of the world! Doom!” than any of the other drivers winning by a country mile?

    • Alex (@korbendallas) said on 7th September 2013, 3:09

      ^this. These wins aren’t being handed to him by any means. Based on their gap to the second placed car, their average winning margins are:

      Raikkonen: 12.45 seconds (1 win)
      Hamilton: 10.94 seconds (1 win)
      Alonso: 9.75 seconds (2 wins)
      Vettel: 9.13 seconds (5 wins)
      Rosberg: 2.33 seconds (2 wins)

  15. It seems like Vettel turns the screws this time of year. Takes it to an even higher level. This guy might be the coolest head under pressure we’ve ever seen in F1.

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