SPIELBERG, Austria, Jun 29 – A disappointed Sebastian Vettel took some consolation from his Ferrari team-mate on Saturday after Charles Leclerc stormed to pole position at the Austrian Grand Prix.
The luckless four-time world champion was unable to take part in the Q3 top-10 shootout in qualifying after suffering an air pressure problem on his car.
“It’s not happy for me from my side of the garage, but it is great for the team to see Charles come through and get pole,” said the German driver.
“Obviously my car was broken and we lost part of Q2 and then all of Q3 completely. We made a decision to take the bodywork off, but we couldn’t get it fixed in time.
“It’s frustrating for sure, but there was nothing we could do inside the car… It was nobody’s fault.”
Team-mate Leclerc was in scintillating form on one of his favourite circuits, the 21-year-old Monegasque taking pole with a record lap in the final seconds.
He was presented with his ‘Pirelli pole position award’ by Lukas Lauda, son of the late three-time world champion Niki Lauda.
It is Leclerc’s second pole position following his maiden pole in Bahrain in March.
“It is a big pleasure to drive this car on the limit and it just felt great,” said Leclerc. “I am very happy to bring the pole home and tomorrow we need to finish the job.”
Ferrari team chief Mattia Binotto said: “It’s a mixed feeling for us today. A shame for Seb, of course, as he would have done very well, but Charles has done very well!
“Two (Ferrari) poles in the last three races! Our performance is very circuit-dependent.”