Manor will be strong once tyre issues are addressed – Wehrlein

The German rookie made a good start in Melbourne and ran an impressive 14th early on before starting to seriously struggle with tyre degradation.

“The start was great,” he told “I was a bit surprised about my start, because it was my first in F1, but it was amazing. I improved six or seven positions in the first lap, and then we were really competitive in the first few laps when the tyres were good. But then we had quite big tyre degradation, and for me after six or seven laps it got worse compared to the other drivers.Then as soon as we put on some new tyres, the pace was back again, so we had a similar pace like in the beginning, so I could fight with other drivers. Then again after a few laps I had more tyre degradation.”

“So that’s the first thing we need to work on, to make the tyres last a bit longer. But in general what makes me optimistic is that the pace is there, we just need to do some changes on the set-up and make the tyres last longer, and then we are competitive.”

Wehrlein says he will be a lot stronger in Bahrain. “I learned a lot. It was my first race, and I still have to learn a lot. I have to forget qualifying, because I did only one lap, and it was a mess, this qualifying.

“So I’m looking forward to the next race. We can learn a lot from the first race and already improve for the next one.”