Perfect lap not enough for Sebastian Vettel

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Sebastian Vettel has admitted that not even a perfect lap would have been enough for him to claim pole position for the Bahrain Grand Prix.

The Red Bull driver qualified second behind pole-sitter Nico Rosberg, and he congratulated his fellow countryman after the session today.

“Congratulations to Nico, he did a very strong lap. It was all his today,” Vettel said in the post-race press conference.

“I’m definitely not disappointed. When I crossed the line I saw I didn’t go first, saw second place on the screen and did not know how much was missing because my lap was fine.

Vettel, who has claimed 38 pole positions during his Formula One career, believes that Rosberg’s time was unbeatable.

“It was clear that even with a perfect lap I couldn’t have done it.”

Instead, the Red Bull driver appeared to be focusing on strategy, with tire management being highly important this weekend.

“I am very happy we managed to save some tires throughout qualifying.

“It will be all about tires and tire deg tomorrow once again. We will see what happens but it’s good to start from front row.”

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With Rosberg uncertain of his own race pace, Vettel is in a strong position to capitalize on any issues for Mercedes. However, with Fernando Alonso and Felipe Massa starting 3rd and 4th, the defending world champion will have to race well if he is to win in Bahrain for a second time.

MORE: Watch the Bahrain Grand Prix online or on your phone or tablet

Audi bids farewell to Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich upon retirement

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Audi bid farewell to its iconic head of motorsport, Dr. Wolfgang Ullrich, at its end-of-season ‘Race Night’ event in Germany on Friday upon his retirement.

Ullrich took over the reins as Audi’s head of motorsport in 1993 and stayed in the role for 23 years, overseeing its arrival in the prototype class of sports car racing and domination of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.

Ullrich stepped down from the position at the end of 2016, handing the reins over to ex-Audi DTM chief Dieter Gass, and attended his final racing event with the German marque at its first works Formula E outing in Hong Kong earlier this month.

Ullrich was honored at the Race Night event on Friday and thanked for his efforts in developing Audi into a force within global motorsport.

“In 566 factory-backed commitments during this period he celebrated 209 victories, 13 of them in the 24 Hours of Le Mans, eleven in the 12-hour race at Sebring and nine in the ‘Petit Le Mans’ at Road Atlanta,” a piece on Ullrich’s tenure for Audi’s website reads.

“31 driver titles in super touring car racing, in the DTM and in the sports prototype category are credited to him. 57 campaigners were Audi factory drivers during Wolfgang Ullrich’s era and he was responsible for 18 new developments of racing cars – an impressive tally.”