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‘If you find grip, send him to us,’ jokes Vettel after disappointing qualifying

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Aston Martin is looking for answers as to why the pace of the AMR22 is lacking this weekend after both Sebastian Vettel and Lance Stroll were eliminated in the first phase of qualifying.

The British side arrived at Mexico City this week having scored points in all of the last three races, lifting it to seventh in the Constructors’ Standings.

Vettel climbed into the top 10 in the opening practice session on Friday, but the pace of the car, relative to the other midfield teams, seems to have deteriorated since then.

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The four-time champion was audibly frustrated when he was told he had been knocked out in the first qualifying phase in 17th, having set a lap time identical to Mick Schumacher one place ahead of him.

At the moment, there is a fair amount of head scratching going on at the Silverstone-based outfit surrounding its performances struggles on Saturday.

“Not yet, but we’ll keep looking,” replied Vettel when asked if he had any answers as to why the pace of the car fell away in qualifying.

“If you find grip, then send him to us in our garage! For some reason, he has escaped, so we’ll try to find him.

“But yeah, we’ll see. Tomorrow is a new day, so I’ll turn the page. And, as much as it really hurts today because we were so slow, and we are starting so far back, we have to focus and try and do a better job tomorrow.”

The 35-year-old is unconvinced by the idea that an increase in temperature between final practice and qualifying contributed to a rough day at the office.

“I don’t think so, it was already bad when it was cooler this morning, so I don’t think it made a big difference. It’s not like we lost the plot. If anything, we lost it from Friday to Saturday.”

Vettel will start the race 17th owing to an engine penalty for Kevin Magnussen, but Stroll will start 20th and last due to a penalty for his collision with Fernando Alonso in the United States last weekend.

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