Ferrari’s victory in the opening race of 2017 isn’t necessarily a sign of a more successful season ahead, warns Sebastian Vettel.
The world championship leader said his Australian Grand Prix victory was a deserved reward for the team’s efforts in the off-season but cautioned that it was too early to make predictions about the rest of the year.
“I think for everyone back in Italy, in Maranello, it was great to get a little bit of a reward after such a long winter, a lot of hard work that went into the new car,” he said ahead of this weekend’s race in China.
“When I came back to the factory people were generally very happy and motivated to push even harder which obviously is what we need. It’s just the first race, it doesn’t mean much, but for sure it’s the best way to start off.”
Ferrari endured a win-less campaign in 2016 and Vettel says his team are more focused now.
“A lot of things have changed since last year,” he said. “The team has evolved.”
“Generally I’m in a much better position, people are more comfortable throughout the whole team. The work that’s going in is a lot more targeted. Overall we’re more confident with the way we work now. Hopefully we can keep up that trend to show it also on the track.”
However believes their 2016 season was not as poor as some have made out. “It wasn’t that bad last year. It wasn’t the best year we’ve had but still I think we had a decent amount of podiums.”
“We had a lot of races where things were not going our way but that’s how it goes sometimes. Maybe my memory is wrong but I remember it better than people make out of it now.”
“It wasn’t the season we wanted to have, after one race it’s easy to say this season is better than last year but it’s only one race.”
2017 Australian Grand Prix
- Australian Grand Prix cost government £56 million last year
- Red Bull ran Verstappen’s car without a drinks bottle in Australia
- Renault fix Palmer’s Melbourne problems
- Melbourne win “doesn’t mean much” – Vettel
- Mercedes explain why 2017’s first race had so little passing