Sebastian Vettel will start Sunday’s race from 11th on the grid after failing to reach the final ten in qualifying.
He missed the cut by less than five hundredths of a second, and was only three-tenths slower than the fastest driver in Q2 in a closely-fought session.
Vettel said: “Obviously I’m not happy but as I said I think I was pretty happy with the laps I had in Q2 but they weren’t quick enough. Now I could go through another hour but that’s a fact.
“We have to start the race from P11 and see what we can do tomorrow. It surely makes it a bit harder but not impossible to do a good race.”
Vettel reverted to an early version of Red Bull’s exhaust set-up this weekend while team mate Mark Webber has continued to use the current version. Vettel would not be drawn on whether that was the cause of his problem:
“It’s difficult to say. Yesterday I was happy with the car that’s why we decided to stick with the current settings.
“I don’t want to blame it on the car. Three times I did exactly the same lap and which three times wasn’t quick enough to make it into Q3.”
2012 Chinese Grand Prix
- F1 fans’ videos from the Chinese and Bahrain races
- First win makes Rosberg the Chinese GP Driver of the Weekend
- Rosberg’s China win rated fifth-best race of last five years
- Top ten pictures from the Chinese Grand Prix
- Rosberg becomes F1’s third second-generation race winner
Image ?é?Ž Red Bull/Getty images