Rosberg and Ricciardo surprised at continuing gap

25 Jul 2014 16:01

Nico Rosberg said he and his Mercedes team were surprised at their continued performance advantage over their rivals after he finished second behind team-mate Lewis Hamilton in Friday'practice for the Hungarian grand Prix.

Defending four-time champion Sebastian Vettel of Germany was 'rest of the best' in third place, six-tenths of a second off the pace, in his Red Bull while his team-mate Australian Daniel Ricciardo was down in seventh.

"The gap is surprising," Rosberg told reporters. "We thought the engine doesn't count for much at this track - and we thought the others would be a bit closer - especially the Red Bull..."

Ricciardo said: "Mercedes showed today they were quick again -- unfortunately quicker than we hoped. I don't think we found too many positives for today... We tried to find the pace but it wasn't there."

He admitted that he had a more difficult day than Vettel, but the German was no more positive.

"We still have a lot of stuff to do," he said. "A lot of work ahead and a lot to catch up. The turning point is when we are even, which is a very ambitious target."

"We try to make progress with the car. We have tried since the beginning of the year and we have made steps," he added.

"But there wasn't one big step - it was always small steps that we were able to do and we have to continue looking for these. Mercedes is far ahead, but the ambition is to catch them.