Sebastian Vettel, Ferrari, Red Bull Ring, 2020

Red Bull has discussed and rejected Vettel for 2021 – Horner

2020 F1 season

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Red Bull has considered offering Sebastian Vettel a deal to drive for the team in 2021, according to team principal Christian Horner.

However the four-times world champion will not be seen in an RB17 next year, Horner told Sky.

“Obviously the subject has been raised,” he said. “Our commitment is to our existing drivers. We think we’ve got a great pairing in Max and Alex and we think that that has great potential for the future as well.”

Last winter Verstappen extended his contract to drive for the team until 2023. But Horner made it clear Vettel will not be brought in alongside him. “Unfortunately it’s not something we’re going to be able to accommodate,” he said.

“That is a definite no I’m afraid,” he added. “Sebastian is aware of that.”

Vettel said yesterday he would respond positively to an approach from his former team, which he won four world championships with between 2010 and 2013.

“It’s unusual for a four-time world champ to be out of a drive at this point of the year,” said Horner. “I guess he’s got a couple of choices available to him. I assume either Racing Point or a year out and re-evaluate the options in a year’s time.”

Red Bull also runs a junior F1, team AlphaTauri, whose team principal Franz Tost told RaceFans yesterday any decision on bringing Vettel back to their operation would be made by owner Dietrich Mateschitz.

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Keith Collantine
Lifelong motor sport fan Keith set up RaceFans in 2005 - when it was originally called F1 Fanatic. Having previously worked as a motoring...

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12 comments on “Red Bull has discussed and rejected Vettel for 2021 – Horner”

  1. Pretty much a given really. It would be quite something for them to hire him.

  2. Could we just put this matter to bed already? It’s starting to get redundant to ponder something that isn’t going to happen anyway.

  3. Why would they want the king of spin?

  4. Hiring Seb only makes sense for the fastest team. He needs to start from the front row to get a decent result. Dont let him race others.

  5. I just don’t see what hiring Vettel would give Red Bull at the moment. I can’t be sure, but I’d hazard a guess he won’t be quicker than Verstappen, so he’ll either be on the same pace (which gives the team a management headache) or slower (in which case surely stick with the cheaper, hungrier Albon).

    Horner is speaking sense unfortunately, as I’d love to see it!

    I hope he ends up at Racing Point/Aston Martin alongside Perez, but that would mean leaving Stroll without a drive, which I can’t see happening. So, likely a year out? At least…

    1. It would be about offering a welcome to their “old friend”

  6. Without even reading the article, will do so after this, I’d wager horner prefers drivers who can keep a straight line on the track, without spinning every race, but that might just be his own preference, maybe williams wouldn’t mind a spinning driver.

    1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      10th July 2020, 15:43

      You don’t know if Vettel would spin in the Red Bull… Raikonnen also had spinning issues a couple of years ago

  7. I thought the ‘Sebastian is aware of that’ comment interesting as well. Since I was thinking Seb himself may have been fed up of F1 and want to retire or at least take a year out, but I guess he (or his agent) must still be talking to teams about trying to get a race seat for 2021.

  8. No Vettel Red Bull return, no Istanbul return either.

  9. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
    10th July 2020, 15:34

    If I were Horner, I’d be very careful with any statement I make as last year we heard the same statements about Gasly staying with the team and we all know what happened.

    Strange as it may sound, this statement actually makes it more likely that Vettel will be joining Red Bull. The more they say no, the higher the odds probably of Vettel joining Red Bull.

    Can anyone really keep Albon if Vettel wants to race for Red Bull? It’s impossible to overlook a century of poles and wins (1 of 3 drivers to do that), 3,000 points, 4 championships, 3 runner-up championships.

    It’s been 6 long seasons since Red Bull tasted the level of success they had with Vettel. Horner, Marko, and Mateschitz must be dying for another chance at a WDC and would gladly settle for a WCC.

    I don’t think Red Bull was Vettel’s first choice but if it’s his only choice and Red Bull’s only avenue to get back to winning things short of duplicating Verstappen, then the ink is already on the paper just like McLaren signed Alonso.

  10. A year off (at least) looks more and more likely. I think it’d do him good – the current cars clearly don’t suit him and his motivation seems down, though only he knows for sure. I’d be advising him to take some time off, go have fun in a few races elsewhere and see how he feels about giving F1 another go in 2022 if an attractive seat becomes available.

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