Formula 1: Qualifying: Vettel’s strong Monaco streak continues

“Monaco”, Sebastian Vettel comments with a grin after qualifying, why things went so much better this Saturday than last week when Q1 ended in Barcelona. “The car is the same as last week. But we were a bit surprised that it was over so early,” says Vettel. “Today it certainly worked better. There is no special reason, but of course we understand the car better now.”

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And then the Monaco driver’s circuit comes into play: “I got off to a good start at the weekend,” says Vettel, who finished ninth twice on Friday, “I was able to build up my rhythm well. Of course, the experience here doesn’t hurt either, because it’s already there also a bit the track that makes the difference here,” explains the two-time Monaco winner (2011, 2017) and pole setter (2011). Vettel was already able to convince in fifth place in the race at the harbor edge last year.

Monaco is a good place for Vettel: Always in Q3 since 2009!

The numbers are also impressive proof of Vettel’s strong Monaco form: the German has been in Q3 every time since 2009 on the demanding circuit in the Principality! The mood is correspondingly good at the Heppenheimer: “I’m very happy overall. The Q2 lap was already very good, the first in Q3 too.” The only thing that ultimately prevented further improvement was the accidents involving Sergio Perez, Carlos Sainz and Fernando Alonso. “The red flag was… I don’t want to say expected, but very likely,” says Vettel.
On Sunday, the Aston Matin star definitely wants points: “In a normal, dry race, it’s good to start in the points here. But I’m expecting tires that are difficult to manage.” In addition, rain is forecast for the Grand Prix on Sunday. Vettel: “If it rains, we have to make the right decisions and make sure we’re careful.”

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While teammate Lance Stroll retired without a hitch in 18th, Vettel’s drive into the top 10 was impressive. “It just shows that everything is still there if he only has the car,” praises Sky expert Ralf Schumacher. For his nephew, however, Saturday in Monaco did not go so well: Mick Schumacher retired in 15th place in Q2, one and a half tenths behind Haas stable mate Kevin Magnussen in 13th place.

“It’s very unfortunate that the group I was in was very close together,” Schumacher Jr. said angrily about the traffic after qualifying: “In the end, that’s why we were three or four tenths short of Q3. If I could do the second sector better it would have been very close, but there are just days when something is missing.”

Again behind the teammate: Mick Schumacher in Monte Carlo

“We struggled a bit at first. After I missed most of the first practice session (with a drive failure; ed.), we were behind. Despite that, we found a good setup, but then the car felt completely different “, describes Schumacher, who also mourns his first shot in the middle segment of qualifying: “Because of a braking error I only had one real lap.”

The son of record world champion Michael Schumacher is still in good spirits for Sunday: “Nevertheless, I had the feeling today that we were going in the right direction and that pays off in that it definitely helps us with the race setup. The weather forecast also shows interesting for tomorrow. That can help us to get into the points,” hopes the 23-year-old.

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