Sebastian vettel made a detour to the monaco marina on his racing bike. In the formula 1 camp of the principality, the ferrari star took time for photos with his fans and signed autographs.
Before the sixth race of the season on sunday (15.10 o’clock), however, vettel is unsure whether his scuderia can show any progress. For most recently in spain, the 30-year-old had complained about a lack of speed, tire problems and a lack of reliability.
"Monaco is a very different track from barcelona. We understood where we went wrong in spain, but only time will tell if we have solved these problems," said vettel at the official press conference before the first practice laps on thursday.
Last year, vettel won in the furstentum even ahead of his teammate kimi raikkonen. At that time, a clever strategy helped the heppenheimer. A new edition is possible, vettel conceded before the curvy harbor round trip. "We have improved it this year, we have positive feelings about it."
Emotions alone will not be enough on this dangerously narrow and only 3.337 kilometers short track. Ferrari, however, was allowed to enjoy the city course. Slow corners, many braking zones, short straights: a third monaco triumph for vettel is not impossible. If he wins on sunday, it will be his 50th birthday. Career success.
Vettel and ferrari under pressure. The german is 17 points behind leader lewis hamilton in the world championship standings. The british mercedes driver also won the last two grand prix races. Like vettel, hamilton has achieved two successes in monaco so far.
Mercedes does not pay itself to the favorites. The long wheelbase of the car is not optimal for the hatz along equal to 19 tricky curves. Overtaking in the dwarf nation is a herculean task. Just the right challenge for hamilton, who secured the 75 in qualifying on saturday. Wants to secure pole position in his career. "It’s really spectacular to drive in monaco. It’s the most technically demanding and most challenging circuit of all," enthused the 33-year-old.
Mercedes also learned from the first races. Vettel could scare up the silver arrows with two wins to start the season. "The first races are always the most difficult ones. We have increasingly understood our problems and are turning our attention to them. I’m feeling better and better about the way we’re handling them," said hamilton. "I don’t know what will happen, but we will do our best."
There is also still uncertainty in the ongoing debate about his planned contract extension with mercedes. The racing team and its star pilot have been in agreement for months about further cooperation. However, the conclusion of the envisaged new contract is still pending. "There is no hurry," hamilton asserted. He still has a valid contract until the end of this year.
However, hamilton could not deny himself a little side blow in the direction of his pursuer vettel. When asked if it was possible that the two might drive together at ferrari in 2019, the defending champion laughingly replied to the german: "he has a veto, so it will never happen."