Aston Martin chief reacts to rumour Sebastian Vettel could be replaced by F1 rival

Aston Martin would prefer to keep hold of Sebastian Vettel if the veteran Formula 1 star decides to prolong his career in the sport.

The German’s current contract expires at the end of the year, with few suggestions so far that an extension is imminent or likely. Vettel’s admission that he is yet to decide what he wants to do in 2023 has only poured fuel on retirement rumours.

His time with Aston Martin is yet to yield the sort of results that he was expecting or hoping for. A disappointing debut campaign, in which the team was unable to truly compete with its midfield rivals, has so far been followed up by more of the same.

Vettel is responsible for five of the team’s seven points collected so far in as many races. Only Williams have a lower points total. Aston Martin have made extensive changes to their car to try to improve their fortunes, and unless those modifications yield significantly better performances, Vettel may decide enough is enough.

Team chief Mike Krack, who replaced Otmar Szafnauer during the off-season, believes he has seen enough of the four-time world champion at work to be reassured that the competitive fire still burns.

“If you see him in a debrief or on the phone, the way he gets involved – nobody drives like that who doesn’t want to drive,” he told N-TV .






Mike Krack admitted Aston Martin have been keeping an eye on Mick Schumacher, currently racing for Haas


Mike Krack admitted Aston Martin have been keeping an eye on Mick Schumacher, currently racing for Haas
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Pool via REUTERS)

“[Monaco, where Vettel finished 10th] was a top performance from the first lap onwards. When you have someone like Sebastian, you have to try to keep him. It’s a mixture of extreme driving quality, experience and a very positive person who helps us progress.”

If Vettel were to leave, either for another team or to pursue other interests outside of F1, the rumour mill has suggested that Aston Martin may turn to his protege Mick Schumacher to fill his seat. Haas are said to be irritated with the younger German after his latest expensive smash, but he may have options elsewhere if cut loose.

When asked about the son of F1 legend Michael, Krack admitted that Aston Martin have been keeping an eye on the situation. “I don’t know enough about the details of his team and environment to judge,” he said, before adding: “We clearly have our way that we want to continue with Sebastian. We’ll see about everything else at a later date.”

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