Sebastian Vettel’s hopes of a shock pole position in qualifying for the Canadian Grand Prix on Saturday were dashed as early as Q1 as a lack of engine power left him languishing towards the bottom of the timesheets.
Ferrari entered this weekend’s race in Montreal with hopes of a second win of the season thanks to an engine boost at one of the most power-dependent circuits on the calendar.
It was perhaps ironic that a problem with the MGU-H on his Ferrari power unit forced Vettel to sit in his garage for the majority of Q1, only emerging with a few minutes remaining.
The German driver managed to put in two timed laps, but neither were good enough for any position higher than 16th on the grid.
Vettel made no secret of his annoyance when informed of the result over the radio, with the expletives not being fit for broadcast.
“Right from the start we didn’t have the full power available, so when I went out for the first run we tried to fix the problem, but we couldn’t,” Vettel said after the session.
“Due to the lack of power we couldn’t make it further. For sure we have to investigate but I don’t think that there’s anything to do with the engine. I think it has more to do with the electronical side, but I am confident that we can fix the problem in time for tomorrow’s race.
“We have plenty of tires and anything can happen. We have a strong car and a strong pace, so I should be able to score good points. The problem we had this morning in FP3 was completely unrelated.”
To make matters worse for the four-time world champion, he has been summoned to the stewards for allegedly overtaking under a red flag during the final practice session on Saturday morning.