Vettel’s painful story of his time at Ferrari – Sebastian Vettel arrived at Ferrari in 2015 with the ambition of becoming world champion in the Scuderia’s livery, but he never managed to win the F1 title with the Italian team. Questions have been asked as to if his time at Ferrari damaged his legacy as multiple world champion.
After five seasons of ups and downs, the German has signed for Aston Martin in 2021. A choice that the four-time world champion is far from regretting.
After dominating Formula 1 between 2010 and 2014 with Red Bull, Sebastian Vettel now seems to be far from his best years. The 34-year-old driver finished the season in 12th place overall at the wheel of his Aston Martin. Despite no longer playing a leading role every weekend, Vettel has made no secret of his satisfaction at driving for the British team, especially after his mixed years with Ferrari.
“I’m happier now than before”
Sebastian Vettel reflected on his time at Ferrari and affirmed his attachment to Aston Martin:
“Well, my departure from Ferrari was perhaps a bit strange. In that respect I am happier now than I was before. But I would never want to deny my time at Ferrari, even if the great successes I had hoped for did not materialise there. We wanted to become world champions but it didn’t happen.
“This is clearly due to the lead of Mercedes and Red Bull. Unfortunately, they continue to be clearly superior. But at some point Ferrari will win again and become world champions. For us (Aston Martin) it will take longer.”
The current team of the moment is obviously Max Verstappen’s Red Bull Racing Honda squad. The very team who took the driver’s title at the last during the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix two weeks ago, the first title since winning back in 2013 with Sebastian Vettel.
This was the team that Vettel took his four drivers titles during the outfit’s period of dominance partnering with Renault. When team boss Christian Horner was asked how it compared, he said this recent title win was special.
“It’s always difficult to make comparisons. The first title was very special because that was against the odds as well,” explained Horner. “This one feels equally as special as that very first title [in 2010],
“The intensity and the competitiveness of this one has been insane and the fact it’s been against the quality of opposition we’ve had, in both Lewis and the Mercedes team, has stretched us beyond what we even thought we were capable of.
“That’s what makes it even more rewarding. During the hybrid era Mercedes has been all dominant, they’ve annihilated the opposition, and finally, we’ve managed to produce a competitive car, and Max has grabbed it with both hands.
“To manage to come out on top with the biggest title on offer in motorsport is a tremendously proud moment for us, and obviously we’re tremendously proud of what Max has achieved.”
So in light of this, could Vettel’s achievements be that exceptional beyond that first title for Red Bull in 2010? Certainly much was made at the time of how the German would seem to automatically win pole, then go on unchallenged at the front, often winning the race.
During Ferrari, Vettel never had that luxury, being made to fight for wins with a dominant Mercedes duo lead by Lewis Hamilton.
Vettel’s legacy is damaged from Ferrari and arguably Aston Martin, and one wonders if he’ll ever be able to prove that once again he could be a serial winner again.