Unruffled by a verbal assault from Bernie Ecclestone, Sebastian Vettel on Thursday made it clear that he is expecting an improved performance from Ferrari in Montreal.

The four-time world champion lines up for Sunday’s Canadian Grand Prix seeking to close the gap on Mercedes duo Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg.

The German confirmed that the Italian team are introducing a power-unit update and said he felt more than satisfied with his progress with the team this year.

He also brushed aside veiled criticism of his promotion of Formula One by the sport’s commercial boss Ecclestone, saying he was not bothered by the veteran ringmaster’s comments.

A year ago, he was struggling through a difficult season with Red Bull when they came to Canada and his then junior team-mate Daniel Ricciardo claimed a dramatic maiden victory.

“So far, with Ferrari, and for me, it has been better than what anyone expected,” said Vettel on Thursday. 

“We’ve had a good start, a lot of podiums and one win in Malaysia, which in a way was a dream come true.

“We have more reasons to keep dreaming. We have good people on board, we have the knowledge, but we just need a bit more time.

“How much is difficult to say, but if we keep going like this, I’m confident that at some point we will catch Mercedes .”

Speaking at a sponsor event in downtown Montreal, he added: “Everyone has the ability to have an update and we decided to have one here.

“Hopefully, it is a step in the right direction and brings us a bit closer, but you cannot expect miracles from one day to another.”

Ferrari, along with Honda, are the first teams to use their allocation of development tokens this year. Ferrari are using three and Honda two.

Asked about Ecclestone’s recent ‘bad for business’ criticism, in which he said that Vettel and fellow-German Rosberg did not do enough to promote F1 or to boost their own individual profiles, Vettel smiled.

“”He is old enough to say what he wants,” he said. “I still get along very well with him. He has certain opinions about some things, which is fine, but I’m not too bothered .” – Agence France-Presse

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