Aston Martin chief Otmar Szafnauer says Sebastian Vettel has arrived at his new team “really hungry” to succeed and believes the four-time champion is fully capable of rediscovering his best form. After a rollercoaster six years at Ferrari, which featured 14 race wins but no world title and ended with a particularly difficult 2020, Vettel begins a fresh chapter in his career at the outfit that was Racing Point in the first season of their new era.
“The way I look at it is at 33 years old you don’t forget how to drive a Formula 1 racing car fast. He definitely hasn’t forgotten how to do that, and the work ethic is still there.” Szafnauer said. “He’s really, really hungry to perform. We’ve started working with him this year already and you can see it. He asked all the right questions and a lot of them. He’s really hungry for knowledge.”
“He wants to know as much, if not more, than the performance engineer you have working on the car, whose job it is to understand every little aspect of car performance. Seb wants to know that much – plus more,” he added. “That’s a good trait to have, he has that, he carried that with him to our team. We see it and he is really, really hungry, as he said, to have fun again in Formula 1. But fun to him means being competitive.”
“Seb is very experienced but not over the hill by any means at the age of 33. Lance is much younger and on the learning curve but naturally very fast. So, I think that combination will suit us very well,” he continued. “The other thing is we’ve had a history of drivers working very closely together to extract the most we can out of the team and the car. Even in the days when Esteban [Ocon] and Sergio [Perez] would occasionally come together on track, behind the scenes they shared all their data, they worked together and they worked tirelessly to make sure that we got the best out of the car over a weekend. I can see that will continue with Sebastian and Lance. I look forward to that.”