Sebastian Vettel has admitted that the last sector of the Circuit de Catalunya track is proving to be Ferrari’s major weakness this weekend ahead of the Spanish Grand Prix on Sunday. The German, despite finishing third in qualifying, was miles off the speed of Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas.
The track in Barcelona was the location where the Scuderia looked extremely fast in pre-season testing, but they haven’t managed to convert that pace into the proper season, with Mercedes having won every race so far.
Slower corners are proving a major problem, and Vettel has identified this as the issue again in qualifying on Saturday.
“Yeah, it seems to be more than an Achilles heel at the moment,” he said of the last sector.
“I just spoke to Valtteri [Bottas] and they [Bottas and Hamilton] are both very happy with the car, especially last sector.
“I think we got everything out of the car in the first run. In the second run I had to try something different and it didn't work. So, obviously, happy, but not happy, if you know what I mean.”
The four-time champion reckons the problem is coming from grip around the corners.
“I mean, the car doesn't feel bad,” he continued.
“Obviously, we are not quick enough. It terms of balance, we got it more or less right. I had a bit more understeer. Probably more than they [Mercedes] had.
“Overall, in those sort of corners, you need the grip, and we might be a bit down on that.”
After four races in 2019, Vettel is third in the driver’s championship.