Sebastian Vettel has revealed he is yet to “get into the rhythm” of driving his Aston Martin following Friday practice for the Formula 1 season-opener in Bahrain.
Vettel was four-tenths-of-a-second shy of team-mate Lance Stroll as he finished a lowly 14th for his new team as he continues to play catch-up after experiencing multiple gremlins during pre-season testing at the same venue two weeks ago.
With the Aston Martin’s aerodynamic concept differing drastically from that of the German’s former team Ferrari, in addition to the downforce cuts enforced by new regulations this year, Vettel has insisted he has much to learn.
“[It was] busy, we tried to get the most out of the time that we had,” said Vettel. “I think every lap still helps me to get used to the car, get into the rhythm.
“I am trying a lot of things so, still, I think there is a lot to try and a lot to learn. It is what it is.
“We are obviously looking into some of the stuff we tried in the evening and hopefully, it will be a bit more clear and calmer tomorrow but I think that is probably true for the rest of the pack as well.”
Strong winds hit the circuit in time for the second session, with the forecast for even higher windspeeds arriving over the course of the weekend.
Whilst this was the reason for many of the mistakes seen late in the day, Vettel has looked towards his own consistency levels before laying blame on outside influences.
“There is a lot left on the table, just getting used to the car, trying to push the limits,” added Vettel. “Right now, it seems up and down.
“Some corners I am really good and others I am far out but that is normal. Hopefully, come tomorrow, with more consistent running, I am able to squeeze the limit everywhere.”