Third and fifth place in qualifying was clearly not what Scuderia Ferrari had hoped for, having consistently been fastest in free practice at Singapore‘s street circuit. However, both Seb Vettel and Kimi Raikkonen – who qualified in that order – are now looking to the opportunities that such a long race can offer tomorrow. Both Ferraris used Option (Ultrasoft) tyres for a planned attempt in the first run of Q2, then reverted to the Hypersoft compound as conditions proved that the track was extremely tyre-sensitive in tonight’s session.
Sebastian Vettel: “Our laps today were not ideal, and, all in all, our qualifying session was not as good as it could have been. I think we didn’t take the best out of the car. We didn’t have a smooth session, that’s it. The gap seems big but it’s partly because this is a very long track, so I am not worried. I think Lewis had a very good lap but he was not impossible to beat. Obviously, it’s always better to start from the front row, but I think tomorrow it will be fine. The car is good, so I believe we can stay with the group of the cars in front and then we have two hours of racing to work something out. You never know what can happen. Obviously, we should have done better because we had all the ingredients, but today we didn’t put them all together. I’m not completely upset because third is not a disaster, but for sure we wanted to qualify on pole and that was up for grabs today. However, we now turn the page and see how we can fight tomorrow.”
Kimi Raikkonen: “This qualifying was a bit more tricky than we expected. In general, we struggled to ‘switch on’ the tyres straightaway and make them work as easily as it had been all weekend; so I was a bit surprised. Things can change quickly from practice to qualifying, that’s why there’s no reason to look at the lap times in practice, especially in places like this. The end result obviously is not great; this is the kind of circuit where if you get everything right your lap can be very good, but if you have some difficulties, the time difference gets big very quickly . Tomorrow will be a long day, everybody seems to be quite close to each other; it will be a long, tough and hectic race , and usually many things happen here. We’ll try to make the right decisions and the right calls.”