Webber frustated by dismal day

23 June 2012 05:19

Mark Webber was left feeling frustrated after a dismal performance for Red Bull during qualifying on Saturday left him near the back of the grid for Sunday's European Grand Prix.

The Australian, currently third in the drivers' standings, spent most of the final practice session in the pits while his team frantically tried to fix hydraulic and gearbox issues with his car.

Despite their best efforts, the 35-year-old could not match the pace of rival teams and even a new set of supersoft tyres could not lift him into the second part of qualifying.

As a result, the Monaco race-winner will start Sunday's race at the Valencia street circuit in 19th place, behind Toro Rosso drivers Australian Daniel Ricciardo and Frenchman Jean-Eric Vergne.

Webber explained that his situation had been more or less inevitable as he was forced to run without the Drag Reduction System working on his car.

"We had no DRS. That's worth 1.3 seconds, so it makes it very difficult when you have no DRS," he said.

"The car's put up a big fight today. We've only managed four laps all day, and three of those were in qualifying. We had one lap on primes at the start and then went to the pits because the gearbox hydraulics were playing up.

"The guys did the right thing by putting me onto the options because we were in a desperate situation there to try and get through because it's very tight.

"The laptime wasn't too bad given the DRS was out, but it doesn't do anything to help our situation. So now we have to do what we can tomorrow."

"It's a big hit for us," he said. "With this one and Barcelona, that's two difficult qualifyings through no fault of my own, but that's the way it can go over 20 races."

Red Bull team-mate and world champion Sebastian Vettel secured a second consecutive pole position equalling Alain Prost and Jim Clark's record of 33 career poles.

He said: "I knew that in qualifying, if I go at the end and the track comes in a bit more, then it should be good enough for pole. But in the end it was a surprising gap."

"The guys have worked really hard this weekend in the garage to make sure that we brought a couple of new parts to the car. They seem to work and I am looking forward to the race tomorrow."