Sebastian Vettel said he has no regrets over his six years at Ferrari despite failing to succeed in his objective and end the team’s long wait for a first drivers’ title since 2007. And the four-time world champion made lucid he felt revitalised by the prospect of joining Aston Martin next year – but looked back with pleasure on his years at Maranello. “I don’t remorse the years that I’ve spent with Ferrari,” said Vettel at Mugello ahead of this weekend’s Tuscan Grand Prix, which Ferrari are hosting to celebrate their 1000th Formula One race entry,
“They’re a big a part of my life. In the very beginning, Ferrari has a special place, the way I grew up having a look at Michael [Schumacher] and him racing at Ferrari.
“For certain, I wanted to do better than I did, but I’ve certainly tried everything. We had good times, also naughty times, but it’s probably a part of it and now probably for both sides, it is time to move on.”
Ferrari told the German driver in May that they were not renewing his contract, leaving him stunned and, at times, near to leaving F1 as he reflected on his prospects.
In spite of everything, he said on Thursday, he wanted to continue racing and was once more than pleased to sign up for the Silverstone-based Racing Point team when it is renamed Aston Martin.
“Naturally, I joined Ferrari not just to sign up for Ferrari and not just win races, but win championships and win it in the correct way,” said Vettel.
“Obviously, in that regard, you’ll say we have failed.
“We didn’t win the championship. I think we had good moments and spotlight moments that I wouldn’t wish to overlook. I’ve got to realize people that in point of fact helped me. I’ve got to make friends, potentially for life. So I wouldn’t wish to overlook that.”
Ferrari’s final drivers’ champion was once Kimi Raikkonen in 2007. Vettel won all of his four titles with Red Bull in consecutive seasons from 2010-2013.
Having a look ahead to his switch to Aston Martin, under the leadership of Canadian billionaire Lawrence Stroll, Vettel said he was once impressed.
“The team has immense potential,” he explained.
“I think there’s some in point of fact good people on board, intelligent people, and I’m having a look forward to helping — and to show that those qualities are there and illustrate that as polite with the results.
“It’s at all times great if in case you have great results straightaway, but everything is like a bit of the first time so I’m having a look forward to assist in making that growth conceivable and enjoy the work that there’s ahead of me.”
Vettel was once 13th fastest after Friday’s opening practice as he learned his way round the sweeping circuit while team-mate Charles Leclerc, more familiar with the track, was once third quickest at the back of Mercedes’ Valtteri Bottas and Max Verstappen of Red Bull.
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