Vettel says tires “aren’t working properly”

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Formula One world champion Sebastian Vettel has criticized the 2013 Pirelli tires following a difficult day in Barcelona during the second test.

The Red Bull driver made his feelings abundantly clear to the team at the end of the session, finishing over a second behind Romain Grosjean down in fourth.

“The tires aren’t really working properly and I think everybody is suffering the same problem, struggling to make the tires last for more than a lap.”

He did however concede that some of the teams may be suffering less than Red Bull.

“It’s difficult to compare things you are testing and also to compare yourself to others.”

Pirelli have opted to supply the teams with more aggressive tires in 2013, meaning that drivers will have to be careful to make sure they do not burn them out too quickly. The move came about following criticism that too many races were seeing only one pit stop, especially in the races towards the end of 2012.

Vettel also revealed that he struggled in the changeable conditions today, with the Circuit de Catalunya experiencing unusually high winds.

“I didn��t do that many laps today, but to be honest the weather wasn’t great and it was a pretty rough day in terms of the wind.”

This was a sentiment race engineering co-ordinator Andy Damerum supported.

“Once again the weather was the main inhibitor today. This morning the conditions weren’t great, so it was a bit of a slow start for everyone.

“In the afternoon we were able to move on to dry tyres, but the wind was quite strong at times and just as with Mark yesterday, that didn’t make life easy for Seb.”

He did appear more optimistic for tomorrow’s session, when conditions are expected to improve in north-eastern Spain.

“The weather is supposed to be much better tomorrow with a balmy 14 degrees forecast, so hopefully Mark will get a smooth run on his last day of testing.”

Travis Pastrana leads flag-to-flag in Nitro Rallycross as the series returns to America

Pastrana Nitro Rallycross
Barry Chin / Getty Images
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Travis Pastrana waited until the final trip around ERX Motor Park to take his Joker Lap – a longer way around the course that all drivers must do at least once in a race – and came out cleanly to win his first Nitro Rallycross race of 2022. With this win, Pastrana is the third driver to visit Victory Lane in the first three rounds of the 2022-23 season.

“This is the closest to a motocross track,” Pastrana told Katie Osborne on Peacock. “Thank you so much for a beautiful facility. It’s been a rough start to the season and I’m so thankful to be back out here. We had a good run in the side-by-side and now for this. This is much needed.”

Another thing needed was the sense of improvement. And Pastrana earned that affirmation each time he completed a lap around the course.

“I get my lap times read out and they said ‘fastest time of the week,’ ‘fastest time of the week’ (each time around) ” Pastrana said. “This is really special. We’re a long way behind in the championship, but welcome to America.”

In a pre-race press conference, Pastrana said that as Nitro Rallycross heads back to America, it was time for an American to win and he made good on his promise. Pastrana took the early lead over Robin Larsson and let the back of his Subaru hang out, taking risks he might not otherwise take if not for his need to win.

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Larsson’s second-place finish completed a perfect sweep of the podium in three rounds. In fact, he has not yet finished worse than second after winning the opening round at Lydden Hill in the United Kingdom and finishing second at Strangnas in Sweeden.

Fraser McConnel rounded out the podium for his best result of the season. He finished fourth in each of the first two rounds.

Last year, Pastrana finished second in this race to Scott Speed before narrowly edging his teammate for the championship.

Andreas Bakkerud crashed in prelims, but rebounded to finish just off the block in fourth. Bakkerud won the second round ahead of his teammate Larsson.

Oliver Bennett completed the top five.

Minneapolis is the first of three rounds scheduled in the United States. Next on the schedule is Glen Helen, Calif. on Octo 30 and then Phoenix at Wild Horse Pass on November 12th. Nitro Rallycross will then head to Saudi Arabia in December to continue their 2022-23 season.