Sebastian Vettel is confident a neck problem suffered during final practice for the British Grand Prix will not hamper him in Sunday’s race.
The championship leader completed just eight laps in FP3 on Saturday before opting not to carry out his final qualifying simulation in order to have treatment on his neck. The issue did not appear to affect Vettel in qualifying, with the German setting the fastest lap on his first lap in Q3 before ending up just 0.044s adrift of Lewis Hamilton in the fight for pole.
“It wasn’t the most enjoyable session but I did the session, so it was fine,” Vettel said. “We had to call it a bit earlier this morning than I wanted and it was fine in qualifying.
“I don’t know what happened but it went stiff and then we loosened it up. For tomorrow I think the night will help, so I’m not worried. Also the speed tomorrow is less than in qualifying because you have more fuel and you will be a bit slower, so it’s going to be OK.”
With such fine margins between himself and Hamilton, Vettel says he was satisfied with his performance even though he was unable to improve on his final attempt in Q3.
“I think it’s that little time then it’s practically the same lap, but obviously I was pretty happy with the first run in Q3 and then we had a little bit more in sector three and bits around the track which I think I got right on the second attempt, but I seemed to lose a little bit down the straights. I’m not sure why, but I think more or less I had two laps that were identical.
“Half a tenth isn’t always out there you find somewhere. So I think he was just a little bit better on the final run, but for tomorrow I think we should be fine.”
Vettel says recent history has shown Ferrari to be even quicker in race trim than it looked on Friday, so he is encouraged that he will be fighting for victory at Silverstone.
“It was a good Friday for us. I’m confident we can be faster tomorrow. Usually we see today that we were able to pick up pace and Sunday as well, and the race has always been better for us in the last couple of races, so I’m confident with everything we have here this year — seems we are stronger and I believe we can be faster.”