Max Verstappen fastest in both practices at Canadian GP, Brendon Hartley 12th
09 June, 2018, 23:26 | Author: Tommie Newton
F1's stricter engine rules for 2018 have limited the components each driver can use per season and Ricciardo's issue in Monaco, plus a problem with the same engine part during a practice session ahead of the Chinese Grand Prix, had left Red Bull fearing he would have to move on to a third MGU-K in Montreal - an automatic 10-place grid penalty.
He said after Practice Two: "I would say that Mercedes' pace was really fast today". Team-mate Sainz put the back end of his auto into the wall early in the afternoon and managed just nine laps.
The semi-permanent track combines long straights with tight chicanes and each team sets up their auto to maximize straight line speed, although the cars also need to deliver a good ride over the relatively tall curbs.
"Now he (Verstappen) is in the spotlight. any small error now I think he's probably going to get a little picked apart from", Ricciardo said.
"It was a special feeling pulling out of pit lane - I had a big smile on my face", the 22-year-old said.
"In qualifying the track grips up quite a lot so you just have to follow the track".
"I don't know, I haven't seen much of the times of the others so it's hard to read yet".
Vettel steered his Ferrari over the 4.36km track in 1min10.764 seconds to deprive Lewis Hamilton of a record seventh pole in Montreal.
"I was a lot happier with the vehicle today and I think we can carry that into the race", he said. "If we can escape this weekend without it, then I'd rather take it somewhere else".
"This year, it's been very close between the three cars".
"It was not ideal from the start and that is a problem because you kind of expect it here".
The young Dutchman clocked the best time of the day in the afternoon session, one minute, 12.198 seconds, ahead of Ferrari's Kimi Raikkonen and Red Bull team mate and Monaco Grand Prix victor Daniel Ricciardo.
Vettel believes Ferrari have made the right call with strategy, particularly as it means they are likely to be able to run longer before making their first stop, and admitted his surprise with the direction Red Bull took. Neither used the hypersofts, thanks to the desire to save all five sets for Saturday and Sunday, and Hamilton's time was actually set on the slowest tyre compound.
That leaves Mercedes at a slight disadvantage as they look to get back to winning ways after Hamilton came third and team-mate Valtteri Bottas finished fifth in Monte Carlo two weeks ago.
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