Sebastian Vettel facing uphill battle in F1 Austrian GP after engine issues

Sebastian Vettel will start ninth Sunday.

Sebastian Vettel will line up ninth for the F1 Austrian Grand Prix after an air pressure problem put him out of Q3 without setting a time Saturday.

Qualifying tenth but elevated a place thanks to a gearbox penalty for the Haas of Kevin Magnussen, Vettel bowed out of Q3 with no lap time set. Throughout the weekend Vettel had been overshadowed by teammate Charles Leclerc but although a front row start had looked likely, the German will now face a much more difficult Sunday.

“Obviously, the car was broken, so we couldn’t fire it up and go,” said Vettel. “We lost parts of Q2 and then Q3 completely. We fairly quickly made the decision to change (the part), but it’s not so easy to take the bodywork off. The guys did everything they could, but we couldn’t do it in time.”

Watching Leclerc take pole just rubbed salt into the wounds as Vettel watched his slim title hopes disappear even further into the horizon. Vettel made no attempt to disguise the hurt.


“It’s frustrating, but there’s nothing you can do inside the car,” said Vettel. “It’s nobody’s fault. For sure, we need to understand what has happened and make sure it doesn’t happen again, but at that time it’s nobody’s fault.

“As I said, we tried everything at that time to fix it. I knew that if we fixed it, most likely there would only be one run, so I was trying to focus only on that but it didn’t happen so at least, as much of a pain it is, it’s also good to see that the other car came through and got pole

“I’m happy for the team but not happy for my side, but we’ll have a good day and a good race tomorrow.”

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