Sebastian Vettel, Aston Martin, 2021

Vettel has “very, very high expectations” for Aston Martin move

2021 F1 season

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Sebastian Vettel says he’s put his troubled final season at Ferrari behind him and is excited by his new opportunity at Aston Martin.

The four-times world champion endured a poor 2020 campaign, sinking to 13th in the championship with barely a third of his team mate’s points haul.

Vettel learned before the season began he would not remain at Ferrari, and has joined Aston Martin as team mate to Lance Stroll for 2021. The team, previously known as Racing Point, presented its new car for the upcoming season today.

“I’m excited,” said Vettel. “I think the car looks really, really cool.”

“Obviously it’s a completely new car so, for me, it’s a completely different philosophy.

The 33-year-old has been hard at work adjusting to his new team. “I spent a lot of time with engineers trying to get on top of all the differences,” he said, “not just technically, but also procedurally. Hopefully it doesn’t take a lot of time to get into the groove. [It’s a] very, very excited group of people, great spirit, so generally I’m in a very good mood.”

Ahead of his first run in the AMR21 in a filming day at Silverstone tomorrow, Vettel has done some preliminary work in the simulator to adapt to the chassis and its Mercedes power unit, both of which are new to him.

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“In the sim it’s very difficult to compare because every sim is a bit different by the hardware of the sim you use and also how the car feels, how well you are able to feel the car’s behaviour, et cetera,” said Vettel.

Aston Martin AMR21, 2021
First pictures: Aston Martin reveals its first F1 car for over 60 years
“I’ve been fortunate enough to get a little bit of running and to get into the groove and get some feedback. I think it’s a never-ending developing the sim in terms of realism and correlation. I think there’s still a lot that can be done, a lot of work in general ahead of all of us as a group of the team.”

Vettel said he’s “at peace” with his sub-par 2020 performance and expects much better things this year.

“I’m obviously not happy with how last year went in terms of performance, partly my performance. I accepted in terms of I’ve been living through it and I don’t have any regrets. Obviously there’s things that didn’t go well and things that I would’ve liked to do better, differently and so on.

“But ultimately I’m very much looking forward to this year. I’m very much at peace with last year. I know that it hasn’t been to my standards that I mostly hold myself.

“I’ve never really cared what people think or say or write. So that’s why I think it’s important that I am at peace with that myself. And as I said, very much looking forward to this year and for sure having very, very high expectations myself.”

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Dieter Rencken
Dieter Rencken has held full FIA Formula 1 media accreditation since 2000, during which period he has reported from over 300 grands prix, plus...
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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  • 21 comments on “Vettel has “very, very high expectations” for Aston Martin move”

    1. Stephen Higgins
      3rd March 2021, 15:43

      If Aston Martin want to fight for wins and championships in the future they have to take calculated risks. Going for Vettel is perfect example where you have to ask only 2 questions;

      1. Is Vettel at his best an elite level driver? Yes.
      2. Can Aston provide a car and environment to get the best out of him? They think yes.

      The reward could therefore be massive.

      Also really impressed with the commercial work with high level sponsors / partners signed up. If this is the Lawrence Stroll effect it all looks very coherent.

      Budget cap and as a customer having an engine freeze may help them also going forward.

      I expect Vettel to win races for this team.

      1. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
        3rd March 2021, 15:47

        The only curveball in this whole thing is Lance Stroll. I hope Lawrence and Omar can exercise their judgment to benefit all parties.

      2. Exactly! Also Vettel is a highly sensitive driver who excels in high downforce cars. He may not be the GOAT or ‘all-rounder’ like HAM or ALO, but give him what he needs and his peaks are one of the absolute highest the sport has ever since (see 2011, 2013 seasons)

          1. Are screw this lol

        1. I can’t see those names without schumacher when it comes to the all rounder discussions, in fact, schumacher and alonso proved to be able to drive bad cars at high level too, hamilton? The first half of 2009? He never got the chance to do that, and I’d like to see it.

      3. I wish him all the best, just absolutely am not convinced this is a elite driver. He lucked into 4 WDC with a superior car and very poor team mate. Now, lets hope he proves me wrong.

        1. @Mayrton LOL….sound familiar?

          1. Yeah just don’t dare say that about a certain ‘you know who’ or you’ll have all the fan-boys pounce on you.

    2. Michael (@freelittlebirds)
      3rd March 2021, 15:46

      That’s the way it should be – he has to turn the page and view this as a completely fresh start and a new challenge.

      Last year is last year and it probably had nothing to do with the way he drove.

      I would not be surprised if Binotto had a slow down button installed on Vettel’s car that would suck out 30 horsepower everytime he pressed it:-)

      Apparently, I was right about everything else so it’s very likely that I’m right about this one too although it might have been a different kind of button and it might have been on a different car since that car seemed to go a bit too fast at times compared to the rest of the Ferraris but the semantics are the same :-)

      The things teams do in sports are simply beyond comprehension.

    3. The presentation and the lady presenter was so cringe and lacked energy. Seb the only shining light of the whole presentation. She forgot the name of her guest and it was just awkward the whole presentation.

      1. So awkward. And horribly corporate

      2. That was Gemma Arterton (yes, the one that drowned in oil in Quantum of Solace) and a fat paycheck in the background from Stroll for her work.

      3. That lady presenter has been a Bond girl… Aston is the Bond brand. I think it was a great idea.

        1. Totally agree it was a great idea

    4. Expecting at least one win from Vettel. The car looks amazing and fast.

    5. Very exciting indeed. This team was really the third fastest last year, and they will have learned a lot from copying Mercedes, and with a super motivated Vettel that I believe will be transformed, it should be good.

      The midfield fight will be great fun. I bet Vettel will surprise a lot of people who now thinks he’s washed up.

    6. I hope we see a rejuvenated Vettel in 2021. It’s hard to know in 2020 whether there was anything else at play making him so much slower than LeClerc (Seb has obviously hinted that there was a few times, even in this article where he says ‘partly my performance’).

      I’ve said a few times in 2019 that I really felt he needed a year or two out of F1 to recharge, like what Kimi and Alonso have done previously, and he’s not gone for that, so remains to be seen whether he can just flip a switch over the winter and suddenly be back to the old confident Seb again.

      I think he’s in a bit of a lose-lose situation in AM though. Either he gets beaten by Stroll, and everyone says ‘Well that’s just further proof Seb doesn’t have it anymore’ or he beats Stroll and everyone says ‘Well he should be doing that anyway’. And then if he beats Stroll consistently, who’s to say he doesn’t start getting slowed down by the management (or given lower priority for new upgrades) in order to make Stroll not look as bad? Then he’ll just be back to the same frustrations he had towards the end of his time at Ferrari.

      1. Correct. And once he feels the frustration he will turn to the bad Vettel.

      2. @t1redmonkey No it’s also win, because if he knocks out podiums and standout performances (as I’m sure he will), his reputation will largely be restored.

      3. @t1redmonkey I can’t say I agree with your lose-lose scenario, although I do agree it would be better for him in general to not be beat by Lance. First of all, he was already won by ‘finding’ a ride with AM post-Ferrari. Feel really bad for Perez but he’s come out ok in this too thankfully. So Seb will already be grateful to be able to continue to do what he loves and be rewarded handsomely for that. And grateful for the fresh start. Secondly, he is bringing Championship experience to a team that has high expectations of itself and plans to continue to grow into a top team. There is no way they are going to curtail him if he consistently beats Lance, just to make LS look better. They simply will not and cannot do that to SV and all the people invested in this team, nor would they insult LS by seeing that he is artificially propped up by said theoretically slowing of SV down. That just simply would not be healthy nor right for this team, and that is just tabloid thinking.

        But what I would add too is that imho the only true way forward for this team to become truly a top team is to make their own cars, and as far as I’m aware they will have no choice for 2022, as they will not have a previous year Mercedes to trace. Unless of course I’m missing something and Mercedes is going to feed them info on how they are designing and building their 2022 car, and is that even legal? I suppose it could be to a point. Not sure, but anyway, at some point they need to stand on their own two feet, imho.

        Lol at every opportunity last year Zak Brown publicly gave them a ‘Tracing Point’ dig, and I expect that to continue this year. I think he would have fumed all off-season if they had beat Mac in the WCC, and I’m sure the same will be the case after this season if AM beats them. Mac only beat them by 7 points and if it wasn’t for the 15 points RP were docked for tracing too much, they would have headed Mac in the end, and I’m sure ZB would have had a lot of sleepless nights over that. I wonder if a worry of his this year is that they will be on a steeper learning curve with the Merc pu compared to AM.

        Lol so if he can’t call them Tracing Point anymore, what’s it going to be… Artificial Mercedes?

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