With Red Bull in a state of crisis Sebastian Vettel has admitted that he has no expectations of defending his Formula 1 World Championship title, and has refused to get into the blame game over the problems that have afflicted the RB10.
When asked by Sky Sport if he felt he could defend his title, and bag a fifth in succession, Vettel replied, “Right now, it’s impossible to have any expectations. Of course, our reliability’s bad at this stage, otherwise I’d be doing a lot more mileage. But also it’s impossible to judge the speed.”
“I think the couple of laps we had it felt okay, but we’ll have to wait until the first race to see what the stopwatch says.”
Despite the problems, Vettel insists that the plan of action to tackle the new season remains the same, “The goal is similar to the last few years. In the beginning, you always start off with limited expectations because we don’t know how competitive we are. And once you realise that you are competitive, you want to win. That’s the target for this year.”
But he cautioned, “Obviously, we have to look at things step-by-step. There’s no point saying that we want to win the championship. First of all, we want to make sure we can do the best job we can, trying to finish the first race and then going from there.”
Renault powered teams have been united in belief that the French car giant will sort out the problems, and not one has yet pointed a finger of blame in their direction.
Vettel also refuses to get involved in the blame game, “I think it’s not fair to split the two anyway,” he said. “We work with Renault, Renault works with us all year. Surely there’s things that happen on the Renault side and other things that happen on our side, and we are a team. We’ve had a lot of success together, right now we have a difficult time together.”
“The cars are quite complex – to change things can take a lot of time, I think that’s why we’ve lost most of the mileage and track time. We went out, something broke, it took a long time to fix it and then we only got limited running at the end of the day,” explained the quadruple world champion.
Vettel and Red Bull will remain in Bahrain to undertake two days of promotional filming, whereupon they will be allowed 100 km per day for this purpose. At this stage any form of mileage will be vital to them. (GP247)
Subbed by AJN.