Sauber not ‘reading tea leaves’ after Jerez test

It is too soon to be picking the winners and losers ahead of the 2012 season, reigning back-to-back world champion Sebastian Vettel insists.

An early analysis might suggest Ferrari is struggling whilst Lotus could be set to join the pacesetters this season. But German Vettel, who drives for 2010 and 2010 constructors’ champions Red Bull, said after the Jerez test that it is way too soon to be drawing conclusions about his rivals’ form.

“There is a bit of a reference when you look at what runs they’ve been doing, but if you look at previous years at this time of year it’s all up and down. Nothing really shows yet,” Vettel is quoted by PA Sport news agency. “Now we wait for Mercedes (to launch their 2012 car) and then we will know a little more, certainly at the last test in Barcelona.

“The change in rules have also given people an opportunity to catch up, so we’ll see what happens.”

One of those with potential to catch up is midfield team Sauber, but boss Peter Sauber insisted that Jerez provided “no more than a snapshot” with two group tests yet to run before Melbourne.

“For me, any attempt to create a pecking order based on Jerez is no more than reading tea leaves,” he told the Swiss Sonntagsblick newspaper.

Sauber agreed with Vettel that the final test in Barcelona next month will “lift the fog” ahead of the trek to Australia for the season opener.

“Only at the last test will we see the teams using their technical packages for Melbourne,” he said.

Vettel added: “Lotus looks quite good from what I’ve seen – fast and consistent.

“Ferrari and McLaren are the big unknown, and perhaps us as well,” he is quoted by Spain’s Europa Press.


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