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“I think we could have had a battle for P5 on our hands” : Sebastian Vettel contends that a P5 finish would’ve been possible had it not been for an unsuccessful overtaking attempt on Esteban Ocon

Sebastian Vettel claims that a P5 finish could've been possible yesterday in the Baku City Circuit

Sebastian Vettel(on the left) and Esteban Ocon(on the right)

4-time Formula One World Champion Sebastian Vettel believes he could have contested for P5 in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix had he not gone off of the track while trying to overtake Alpine’s Esteban Ocon. The German finished P6 in the Baku City Circuit, his highest point total of the season, but was left wondering what time he could have saved by using the emergency lane at Turn 3.

On lap 13, Vettel overtook Ocon on the straight stretch, but after the manoeuvre, his left front tyre locked up, and rather than actually trying the corner, the 34-year-old halted and decided to drive into the run-off area. He was able to rapidly turn around, not before Ocon, Lewis Hamilton, and Yuki Tsunoda had passed him.

Twelve laps later, he overtook Ocon, but was unable to contest AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly later in the race. Vettel conceded that Hamilton in P4 was a move too far, but that a P5 fight was possible.

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Sebastian Vettel gives his version of what went down in Baku yesterday

Sebastian Vettel in his Aston Martin yesterday

“I think overall sixth is really good .I think we are really happy with the result. We had an amazing pit-stop where we beat Mercedes with Lewis. After that, I think I was already past Esteban then [I braked] a bit late because I was sure he’s gonna battle for it. But I wasn’t quite sure [if I would make the corner] so I took the emergency lane and lost a lot of time. Without that time, I think we could have had a battle for P5 on our hands. But nevertheless, I think it’s a really good result,” said Vettel.

As a consequence, Banbury-based racing team Aston Martin, which had appeared to be in distress earlier on in the season, became the final team to earn a point. However, Vettel’s successive points finishes have moved the team into eighth place, and along with Haas.

Vettel said he was “very pleased” for everyone at their Silverstone headquarters and that they appear to be approaching the car’s constraints. “We’ve been chasing the limits of this car now a little bit more than it seems to pay off. But we need to also be realistic. I think this weekend, we were a bit stronger than Sauber [Alfa Romeo], matching probably the Alpines and matching the AlphaTauris. So then it puts us in a different ball park,” concluded the Aston Martin driver.

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