Sebastian Vettel does not think Red Bull Racing's low-key Friday performance at Monza should be a cause for concern, and believes that some of the cars ahead will turn out to have been running low fuel loads.
The 2008 Italian Grand Prix winner sat out most of the morning to conserve engine mileage following his recent spate of failures, while his teammate Mark Webber missed some of second practice due to an electrical problem. The Australian was classified 14th at the end of the day, with Vettel only 18th. But the German insisted everything still felt on course for Red Bull.
"It's quite a surprise today to look at the lap times and see who is on top and who's in the midfield," said Vettel. "Nothing is wrong for us and everything went to plan – we knew we faced a difficult Friday with limited mileage due to the small number of engines I have left until the end of the season. We used the laps we had available today and it seemed to go OK.
"We still have to improve, so we'll now look to see who was fast and who was playing with fuel loads. At this stage it seems impossible to predict who will be on top."
Webber agreed that while Friday practice had not been perfect, there was no reason to panic.
"A mixed day," he said. "We had an electrical problem in P2, which probably cost us about a run and a half, so it was a good recovery from the guys to get the car turned back around.