LONDON (Reuters) – Four times Formula One world champion Sebastian Vettel says he will leave Ferrari without regrets at the end of the season but recognising maybe he should have steered clear of some of the fights he picked.
The 33-year-old German, who won his titles with Red Bull, is joining Aston Martin — the renamed Racing Point team — for 2021.
He leaves Ferrari after a difficult 2019 season, out-performed by young team mate Charles Leclerc, and a disappointing 2020 with a power unit lacking the performance of rivals.
“I don’t think I will go on having any regrets, looking back,” Vettel said in an extensive interview with Formula One’s ‘Beyond the Grid’ podcast.
“It is true that I have failed because I set myself the mission or the target to win the championship with Ferrari, I have failed; I didn’t manage to do that.
“There are things that I should have done better, things that maybe I should have seen earlier, fights that maybe I shouldn’t have picked,” he added, without seeking to make excuses.
“But then again, I think everything that happened brought me to where I am now.”
Vettel will be the only German racing in this weekend’s Eifel Grand Prix at the Nuerburgring, a circuit where he won with Red Bull in 2013 — the last time Formula One visited the track.
Questioned further on the fights he alluded to, the sport’s third most successful driver elaborated:
“I think that maybe looking back they weren’t worth fighting… but then again part of it is probably my nature and it was natural to do so, and I think I had a point as well in some of these little fights and battles.”
The German, a father of three who married his long-time partner Hanna last year, said he had learned a lot in six seasons with Ferrari but was looking forward to a fresh start in England.
(Reporting by Alan Baldwin, editing by Toby Davis)