Sebastian Vettel believes he would have won the Bahrain Grand Prix had he not suffered an apparent problem with his car's exhaust with 20 laps to go.
The German Red Bull driver appeared to be in control of the opening race of the season, having led from the start and maintained his position through the pitstops, until he lost performance due to the problem.
Vettel admitted afterwards that he was disappointed not to have been able to win having been the pace-setter through the weekend: "It's a pity, but what can you do?
"All in all it was a positive except the failure this weekend," he added. "Under any conditions from Saturday morning onwards we were the quickest. I think we had very good control of the race, we had a very good strategy, I knew how my tires were. We had quite good control of the tires and the brakes, everything running smoothly.
"I think it was 15-20 laps to the end I just lost power. I don't know what it was but I think something mechanical broke. Luckily we could continue, but we should have won, really."
Vettel added that it had been a bitter pill to swallow when he realized that his car was not going to be in a position to win.
"It's not easy," he said. "You are leading, everything is fine and you just have to bring the car home. And then we had the failure and initially you don't know what it is or whether it is going to get worse or better.
"At the end it seemed to kind of recover, but it wasn't it great – it cost us a lot. At least we scored 12 important points."
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