Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin, Circuit de Barcelona-Catalunya, 2022

Vettel hoped for Q3 shot before double Q1 exit for Aston Martin

2022 Spanish Grand Prix

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Sebastian Vettel was surprised to be eliminated in the first round of qualifying for the Spanish Grand Prix in his heavily upgraded Aston Martin.

He and team mate Lance Stroll progressed no further than Q1. Vettel gave a surprised reaction on the radio at the end of the session when he was told he had failed to reach Q2.

“I knew the lap time wasn’t great but I knew it was hot and I saw after the first run that nobody’s really smashing it in terms of lap times,” he explained. “So I was surprised because I expected to be better off today and somewhere around P10.”

However he’s hopeful the team will extract more performance from the extensively overhauled car through the coming races.

“If you look at the [lap times] table it’s not that different, but we knew that it’s not going to be a massive step in performance straight away. We do believe in the concept and we’re confident that there’s more to come.

“It’s very early, it’s basically a new car that we ran yesterday. So it is different, I’m still figuring it out but I thought I had a good feeling.

“Today in quali, I was slowed down by the poor car balance in terms of struggling to get a feel for the rear or to trust in the rear of the car. It was moving too much and I just couldn’t carry the speeds that I did in practice or what I thought I needed to, or I wanted to in quali.”

The revised AMR22 has been a focus of debate all weekend due to its outward similarity to the Red Bull RB18. Stroll remarked that “Red Bull is third right now so if it was a copy we’d be two seconds faster.”

Speaking while the session continued, Stroll said he lacked grip before being eliminated in 18th place.

“We have to look into what happened all weekend,” he said. “I’ve just been really struggling with the balance of the car and not getting to grips with it at all, all weekend. It’s been really challenging.

“It’s a completely new aero package so the ride height, set-up, a lot of things changed,” he added. “We have to see if we missed something and we could have done something differently.”

The team also ran into trouble for releasing Stroll into the path of Lando Norris during Q1. The stewards fined them £4,200 (€5,000) after the team admitted the mistake.

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2022 Spanish Grand Prix

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...
Claire Cottingham
Claire has worked in motorsport for much of her career, covering a broad mix of championships including Formula One, Formula E, the BTCC, British...

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2 comments on “Vettel hoped for Q3 shot before double Q1 exit for Aston Martin”

  1. I guess AM will have some work to do to get on top of the right setup for their car. It does look like it drives a lot better. But others have also improved – just look at how close the grid still is.

  2. Car has looked better and performed better of late. Since all mercs were heavily overweight and underpowered (relatively) the “low hanging fruit” would be enough for them.
    The new sidepods might have an unique RB feature but overall are very much different, not as round, also a far smaller undercut, frankly they are between RB and Sauber, with the way top surface blends with the undercut down the rear of the car. The new mclaren sidepods are somewhat similar to Aston’s, squarer but without that rb like small vein on the middle of the sidepod.

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