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Vettel to leave Ferrari at the end of 2020

  • Published on 12 May 2020 08:55
  • comments 18
  • By: Fergal Walsh

Sebastian Vettel will depart the Ferrari Formula 1 team at the end of the 2020 season, it has been confirmed.

The German's current contract expires at the end of the year, having signed a three-year extension in 2017 - however no new deal could be struck between the two beyond 2020.

"My relationship with Scuderia Ferrari will finish at the end of 2020,” Vettel said. “In order to get the best possible results in this sport, it’s vital for all parties to work in perfect harmony.

“The team and I have realised that there is no longer a common desire to stay together beyond the end of this season. Financial matters have played no part in this joint decision. That’s not the way I think when it comes to making certain choices and it never will be.

“What’s been happening in these past few months has led many of us to reflect on what are our real priorities in life.

“One needs to use one’s imagination and to adopt a new approach to a situation that has changed. I myself will take the time I need to reflect on what really matters when it comes to my future.

“Scuderia Ferrari occupies a special place in Formula 1 and I hope it gets all the success it deserves. Finally, I want to thank the whole Ferrari family and above all its 'tifosi' all around the world, for the support they have given me over the years.

“My immediate goal is to finish my long stint with Ferrari, in the hope of sharing some more beautiful moments together, to add to all those we have enjoyed so far."

Vettel joined Ferrari in 2015 after spending five years at Red Bull, where he became a four-time world champion, winning all of his titles consecutively from 2010 to 2013.

During his maiden year at Ferrari, he won three grands prix, before enduring a winless campaign in 2016. However the following two years he was involved in a championship battle against Lewis Hamilton, coming out second best on both occasions.

2019 was a difficult year for Vettel, as Ferrari struggled to consistently keep up with rivals Mercedes. With the arrival of Charles Leclerc at the team, Vettel found himself hit with a new challenge, having had the edge over former teammate Kimi Raikkonen from 2015 to 2018.

Vettel ended the 2019 season fifth in the drivers' standings, behind Leclerc and with one race win to his name.

Replies (18)

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  • JuJuHound

    Posts: 352

    Quite early to say goodbye, this will allow Ferrari to put Leclerc as number one without any additional tricks and games. Seb will be number 2 this year and there is no way he will be happy to do it but for sure we might have some dramas like in Brazil 2019.
    I forgot he spent so much time at Ferrari... 6 years without achieving main goal and then being shadowed by younger star... same happen at Red Bull back in 2014.

    • + 1
    • May 12 2020 - 09:12
    • My assumption is, Vettel might have already landed a place before letting Ferrari know of his intentions. There is no point in keeping it secret for either of the parties especially when 2020 is a no racing season.

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 20:29
  • xoya

    Posts: 582

    Hello, silly season! :D

    • + 0
    • May 12 2020 - 09:32
  • Sad day - I think I said a couple of days back that I would be surprised if his ego would allow him to be treated as a number 2 - so it seems. He's only 32 and has plenty of years in him - can he find the right motivation - being effectively dropped by Ferrari I suspect he can. Did anyone see the brilliant documentary on Sir Stirling Moss last weekend - Ferrari have a long history of treating drivers poorly it seems...

    • + 1
    • May 12 2020 - 10:33
  • siggy74

    Posts: 194

    Alonso, Lurks in the Back Ground ,lol ;p

    • + 0
    • May 12 2020 - 10:41
  • Kinda unexpected, I'll have to say. But I guess this combo just didn't work out. Soooo... RBH next? :3

    • + 0
    • May 12 2020 - 10:56
    • Most likely scenario. Vettel wants to join Merc, RB. Renault/McLaren would want Vettel. But, I am not sure if he would go there. The last stint in F1 should count.

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 18:43
    • A bit sad. Even though the stats are pretty decent, Seb underachieved massively. Perhaps not in terms of wins. But the optics of him not being able to fight for a single championship are so terrible. He comes out so diminished because he definitely had a very good car the last 3 years of his stint.

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 19:01
    • @mcb I can imagine them all wanting him, I just cannot imagine Vettel wanting anything but Merc' or RBH.

      @AJPP Come on, AJ, surely you know better? Had he been in a Merc' I'd see your point, but he scored P2 in both 2018 and 2017, and that's with Bottas and Max in the equation.

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 21:07
    • @calle had it been any other driver on the grid perhaps it would be excused, but Seb was supposed to be THE one to take the battle to Lewis. I still think Mercedes were always going to win those championships, but the fact that Seb couldn't take a single one down to the last race, or even second to last... it just feels lacking. Ferrari definitely had better cars in the Vettel years than in the Alonso years, and Alonso somehow managed to fight in 2010 and 2012. Don't you think that's a valid comparison?

      • + 0
      • May 13 2020 - 19:19
    • I disagree on 2010 and 2012, Alo had a very good chance of winning either of those years, but like with Vettel, he messed up just enough that it was over. In fact, the battles Alo were in were much closer. So for this time, we'll have to disagree.

      • + 0
      • May 13 2020 - 21:19
  • TheDentist

    Posts: 24

    Get Ricciardo in that seat!

    • + 0
    • May 12 2020 - 12:00
    • Dert38

      Posts: 354

      #2 seat for Ric seriously??? )))))))))))

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 12:34
    • TheDentist

      Posts: 24

      Who said anything about him being a number two driver? Leclerc joined as a clear number 2 and look what happened!

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 12:45
    • I'm afraid if RIC comes in, it won't stay #2 like it did with Vettel.

      • + 0
      • May 12 2020 - 18:41
  • The best thing he could do!
    Unless Ferrari get a chief or a technical director of the likes of Todt or Brawn, they will never win the championship again. It's not only a matter of cars or drivers. It's a matter of mentality -something the Italians lack.

    • + 1
    • May 12 2020 - 19:46
  • Aswin

    Posts: 14

    Max to Ferrari and Vettel back to rbh

    • + 0
    • May 13 2020 - 04:25
  • I saw an article recently that Alonso was planning to make an announcement about his 2021 plans. I wonder if he was waiting for this announcement from Seb in order to set the dominoes falling. Frankly, I never see Seb at Mercedes. Alonso back at McLaren? Or maybe Ferrari, but not likely and probably not Merc if Ham stays there. If Ham goes to Ferrari, I could see Alonso at Merc, but where else would he go to have a reasonable shot at fighting for the title? Should be fun to see how it all shakes out.

    • + 0
    • May 13 2020 - 14:26

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