Sebastian Vettel says he sees his six years at Ferrari as a setback after missing the Formula 1 championship with the team.
Vettel joined the team in 2015 with high expectations, but despite 14 victories in six seasons, he failed to win the fifth world championship, in addition to the four victories he won with Red Bull.
The closest was in 2017 and 2018, when Ferrari had a car that could win the title, but never reached the final with a chance to win.
The Abu Dhabi Grand Prix will be Vettel’s last race with the team this weekend, before going to Racing Point 2021 in preparation for the Aston Martin makeover.
Fault! The file name is not specified. Sebastian Vettel’s career in the film Ferrari ends after the Grand Prix of Abu Dhabi. Mark Sutton – Pool/Getty Pictures
When asked whether he was consoled by the fact that he was the third Ferrari driver to win races and had faced the dominant Mercedes team, Vettel did not change his mind.
It doesn’t change anything anyway, he replied. We never made it anyway.
We had ambitions and goals to win the championship and we didn’t have them. I think it’s just a fair consideration. I don’t think saying it out loud is gonna change anything.
We had to deal with a very strong team-pilot combination, but our goal was to be stronger and in this respect we failed. There are reasons for that: We had good and bad matches, sometimes we were close, sometimes we were far away.
There are many reasons, but in general… I don’t think it’s unfair, it’s just the truth, there’s nothing wrong with saying it out loud.
The campaigns of 2017 and 2018 led by Vettel with errors are often seen as missed opportunities for the German rider, who in both cases lost the title to Lewis Hamilton.
His undiscovered mistake in the 2018 German Grand Prix, when he fell from the top in the rain, is considered a turning point in his career with the Ferrari.
When asked whether this assumption was correct, Mr. Vettel said no, I think it’s been a roller coaster ride of many things for years. As far as this year’s dynamics are concerned, it didn’t help.
It was a small mistake, with a huge result, a huge fine. There was definitely something else going on.
The 18th. We had the departure of Mr. [Sergio] Marchione, a change of course from Maurizio [Arrivabene] to Mattia [Binotto], so the 18th season was very good. Maybe this season is crucial for a lot of things, but I don’t know if we can really reduce it to one thing.
In 2016 we separated from James [Allison, technical director of Ferrari] because of personal conflicts at the time. Looking back, there are many things we should and could have done. It all happened for a reason, so the most important thing for me was to make sure I learned from it.
I think I outgrew it. Some moments were on the right track, Germany in Hockenheim, others not. In general I feel much more comfortable today or in a better place than in those years, but of course it wasn’t always easy and simple then.
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