Sebastian Vettel says Ferrari will not be blinded by the advantage it enjoyed in Friday practice for the Belgian Grand Prix despite comfortably leading the field.
The German was quickest in the opening practice session while teammate Charles Leclerc was fastest in FP2 as Ferrari ended up one-two on both occasions. The margin was nearly a second in both sessions but Vettel says previous experience this season will ensure Ferrari does not get carried away.
“I don’t think the margin is correct,” Vettel said. “I don’t know what others are doing. We’ve seen a couple of times that we’re very quick on Friday so I’m not blinded by that.
“The reality is today is a Friday. We have to wait until tomorrow night and then especially Sunday is when it matters.
“(The car is) less competitive in sector two and then when it’s straight again more competitive! It’s something that we knew. We have to work on sector two and work on the feel of the car there. Obviously the race has more than one lap. Today is Friday, we have seen many times we are good on Friday if you look only at one lap so we shouldn’t get blinded by that.”
And while Ferrari’s qualifying pace looked impressive at Spa-Francorchamps, Vettel says the car was far less competitive during a race simulation, but again says that is typical of past race weekends.
“Nothing happened, we were just not so fast. It’s not a big secret — we struggle a bit more on consecutive laps for the long run, but it’s also Friday so I’m not sure. We seem to do something quite different compared to the others. One lap I think we’re quite OK and race pace we need to pick it up.”
With lower temperatures forecast for Sunday, Vettel says Friday’s running will still prove beneficial even if the conditions change the way the car behaves.
“I’m not concerned; we’ll see what it does. Maybe it will be difficult to carry today into Sunday but still it was useful to do those laps and we’ve got some homework.”