Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Melbourne, 2011

Vettel: “We still have zero points like everybody”

2011 Australian Grand PrixPosted on | Author Keith Collantine

Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Melbourne, 2011
Sebastian Vettel, Red Bull, Melbourne, 2011

Sebastian Vettel said Red Bull have done the “first step” by taking pole position in Melbourne:

“Surely we have done the first step and I think starting the season that way obviously is like you want to.

“And it’s just a good sign for all of us in the team. We’ve been working very, very hard to get the new car, RB7, where it is now, and I think it’s down to the people working in the factory plus the people down here, preparing the car and getting it ready.

“It was obviously a pleasure today, quite fast and I’m very happy with the result. But, surely, if you look at the points, we have zero points like everybody else, so we’ll have to see tomorrow.”

Vettel said the Pirelli tyres are lasting longer than expected which he thinks is “promising” for Sunday’s race:

“Coming here we were all surprised how well they were working on one lap and also, what we have seen on Friday, with a bit more fuel in the, was quite promising for Sunday. So we’ll see how we get on.”

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34 comments on “Vettel: “We still have zero points like everybody””

  1. Is it real that Vettel didn’t load KERS on the car? I heard that Hamilton didn’t because of failure, but I could’t confirm about Vettel yet.

    1. It seems that way, as he tried to beat the 1.23.529 lap the graphic wasn’t showing the KERS battery go down so I can only think he wasn’t using it.

      1. Did Webber use it? If so that’s more astonishing.

        1. RBR now confirmed neiter were using it. Sebs was not fully loaded and Webber was not using it without further detail given.

          So RBR wanted to give them a fair shot of being in pole between them maybe, afte Sebs was not OK?
          Only they were a bit supprised about McLaren being close and pipping Webber off the first row then.
          I feel another RBR internal row brewing again already.

          1. lol I hardly believe they shut off Webber’s KERS for an equal shot to Vettel! Ridiculous to speculate an internal fight being based on that notion.

      2. He didn’t use it or he didn’t have it? If he didn’t have, it’s a sort of repeat of 2009. No KERS, less weight, more balance of weight. but if he had KERS but didn’t use it…well, we have to wonder what’s going on KERS.

        1. Not quite true. This year there is a mandated weight distribution, so all of that disadvantage is gone.

          1. Not all of disadvantage is gone. still more balast help you.

          2. Yeah, it is true that the front and rear distribution is locked, but still, the lower the centre of gravity, the les weight you transfer under cornering and braking. I think I saw Adrian Newey say somewhere, that he could build a car without KERS, that would go faster than the ones with it, still maintaining the same weight.

        2. They actually did have just wasn’t able to use it.

          1. If it’s true, it’s so strange! KERS don’t make car faster even compared to the car which has it but not use it? in Vettel’s second run, he had older tyre, no use of KERS but still got faster. It’s ridiculous. If it is, maybe No KERS car is faster because they could use more balasts.

          2. Actually, Vettel was slower on his second lap by 0.050 sec

            He set his pole time on his first lap

          3. He used KERS on his first lap.

    2. It looks like neither Vettel or Webber used it on thier time setting laps, and apparently Hamilton’s failed thru that last lap aswell.

  2. So did Vettel really not have KERS on in those fastest laps? He was just enormously fast. Good thing we have some pitstops and a 70 lap race for things to go wrong tomorrow, otherwise he would win that race with a 30 second lead.

    1. I do get the feeling he’s just going to run away with it, especially if his qualy pace scales up to race pace, he could be a great deal faster than those behind him!

    2. He did not use it on his second lap. There is no indication as to whether or not he did not use it on his first.

      1. The team have by now confirmed, that they did not use it “for internal reasons” not further elaborated on.

        Hm, now what is that about?

  3. When asked about it Vettel said he wasn’t using KERS, when asked why he said ‘couldn’t find the button’.

    Webber didn’t use it either.

    Wonder what’s going on there?

    1. Webber said it’s a secret.

      My theory is that they either don’t have KERS on the car, or they’ve found a way of cheating the system and using more of it, which shows as it not being used at all.

      Can’t think of anything else right now

      1. I’m thinking they’ve done something clever. If it was broken, they’d say. If they didn’t have KERS, they’d say (and I’m sure we’d know that they don’t have it).

        Not sure they’re cheating the system but they’ve definitely done something which they don’t want others to know about.

        1. James Allen has just posted that Red Bull have a lightweight “start only” KERS. Could be a problem in the race if Lewis can get within a second in lap 3. Not only will he have the advantage of DRS but also KERS. Also means that we did see RB’s ultimate pace, whereas Lewis could have gone a few 10 tenths quicker.

          If RB like last season fall back towards the others in race-pace, we could still be in for a very interesting battle at the front tomorow

          1. Also means that if Lewis can jump Vettel at the start, Vettel won’t really have an advantage of DRS as Lewis can just save some KERS and that should be sufficient defence

  4. The question for me is whether getting pole on soft tyres is going to mean an early pit stop. Imagine if the top 4 have to pit by lap 8-10 because their soft tyres are shot. They will come out (like Massa) on colder tyres straight into the midfield battle.

    I’m not complaining as it should mean a better spectacle for us the viewers, but if it is the case, might it force the teams to adjust their thinking about how important pole actually is to them?

    Of course you could then argue that if the big boys abandon the pole race one or more of the midfield teams takes pole and the result is then starting the race behind them rather than coming out of the pits behind them.

    I just know it is impossible to state categorically who is in the best position right now. Roll on tomorrow so we can get some answers.

  5. I’m liking where Seb is at now. He seems more relaxed and mature 2010 really did wonders for the wonderkid.

  6. Vettel: “We still have zero points like everybody”

    Not everybody! Some of us F1Fanatics already have some prediction points in the bag! ;)

  7. What is the point of having KERS on your car if you are not using them?

    1. Geordie_Porker
      26th March 2011, 12:55

      Have a look at the earlier comment about a ‘start-line only’ KERS – means you can play with the height of your centre of gravity more, which helps a huge amount. I suspect we’ll find out between this race and the next what RBR are up to. One thing’s for sure though – everyone else has a LOT to do…

    2. I’ve also heard the suggestion KERS compromises braking ability. But since the on screen telemetry did show the battery icon I assume it was installed.

      In a low fuel qualifying lap your lap time might benefit from not using the system in spite of the weight in order to get the absolute most out of the brakes.

      While in race conditions when there’s more careful braking to both save fuel and tyres anyway, not to mention defending abilities in the race itself, it might work out better for your average lap time.

      Their top driver got pole by over half a second, it’s not that risky for them to play the percentage game. :)

  8. Aha, lightweight start only KERS! link to the JA story mentioned above – a lot of ‘may’ and no real confirmation, but it looks like something you can expect from Newey.

    Also I’m wondering, if you have a fully loaded KERS, how does that affect your brake balance? Wouldn’t it be better?

    And is that something other teams could use in the race as well, only use KERS when really needed, so you have better braking in the rounds you don’t need to reload? Or would the set up be too difficult? Let’s closely watch tomorrow’s warm up lap.

  9. Brilliant stuff from Newey: start only KERS.

    Now I’m wondering if they have another non KERS brake set up for that? Because KERS affects braking so much, is what we hear this year.

    With one set up you load the KERS, then you go out with the other setting which handles better. Maybe this requires mechanics to work at the car, or maybe it can be adjusted from the steering wheel? Another possibility is that you accept the worse handling when you’re loading KERS.

    At the start they could use this approach as well, we’ll have to watch that warm up lap, or maybe they load KERS when they drive to the start – I guess that’s not possible, because of the low speed.

    I’m also wondering if other teams can do something with this as well: have a set up which is not so good when you’re loading KERS, but when KERS is full, it brakes and handles better. Then you can save KERS as overtaking, or defense mechanism.

  10. Here you go

  11. Vettel didn’t used KERS but Webber may have.

    1. Webber stated in the post-qualifying press conference he didn’t use it either.

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