Sebastian Vettel delighted to take pole in Korea after 'tight battle' with Mercedes
German adds he is surprised by Red Bulls sector one pace
By William Esler
Last Updated: 06/10/13 7:29am
Having trailed Lewis Hamilton in both of Friday's practice sessions, balance changes ahead of Saturday morning enabled the German to find the missing tenths to make it three successive poles.
Vettel admits he is now comfortable with the setup of the car, but was surprised to find he was making up time on the straights - traditionally Red Bull's weakest trait - rather than through the high-speed turns of sector two.
"It was fairly close as we could see," the World Champion said in the FIA Press Conference.
"I had a very, very good lap in Q3 on my first attempt and I knew it would be tricky to beat that time for myself! On my second attempt I caught Kimi on the warm-up lap and didn't have time to drop back further so it was not ideal, but fortunately the first lap was good enough.
"Mercedes were very strong and I think they feel pretty comfortable in the middle sector, so yeah it is a tight battle. It is a bit of a surprise that we are good in sector one this year which is just straights - it is good in the two corners and on the straights which is helpful for the race as it is the easiest part of the track to make up time.
"We have got the balance right this weekend and have improved the car from yesterday - I wasn't entirely happy after the final practice yesterday - so overall I think we can be happy with what we have achieved, so that is why I was really happy after qualifying."
The Red Bull driver currently leads the World Championship by 60 points as he seeks a fourth consecutive title.
Sky F1's coverage of the Korean GP begins at 5.30am, with lights out at 7am