Szafnauer says Vettel will bring ’1000 little things’ to Aston Martin in 2021
Earlier this month, Sebastian Vettel announced his transition to Aston Martin next year - something team principal Otmar Szafnauer is delighted by.
The secret hidden in plain sight
After it was revealed that Ferrari had neglected to approach their four-time World Champion. with a contract for next year, endless rumors about Vettel’s clouded future immediately began to circulate; the most popular of which being an Aston Martin seat from next year onwards.
Photo credit: Ferrari
It quickly became evident that this rumor was backed by some amount of truth and, sure enough, the news soon broke that the German would adorn the iconic Aston Martin wings next year, following the rebranding of Racing Point.
“He will raise the team to a different level and I’m sure it will be 1000 little things that he will help us improve that can then take us to a new level,” Szafnauer explained.
“I think he’ll bring with him a World Champion work ethic and that’s what we all want to learn from. Everyone’s going to have to raise their game and he will be a great mentor for Lance too. He’s still relatively young and very fast, and it’s great for Lance to learn from a four-time World Champion.”
Mixed reactions to Vettel’s team swap
The ever passionate World Champion is set to replace - somewhat controversially - Racing Point’s Sergio Perez, and will subsequently race alongside team owner Lawrence Stroll’s son Lance.
This decision sparked fury among parts of the Formula 1 community, and prompted a sigh of relief from others. Many fans were outraged that Racing Point so hastily replaced one of their most valuable assets and team members, and indeed, Szafnauer confessed that it was by no means a simple choice.
Photo credit: Racing Point
“It wasn’t an easy call to make, because Checo has served us well,” Szafnauer went on. “He’s a great racer, a quick driver and is a safe pair of hands on a Sunday. I think it’s a compliment to Checo that he had to deliberate so long on whether to take a four-time World Champion with all the experience that Seb brings or to stay with Checo.
“It will be tough. Checo is a good guy and a great racing driver who served us well over the years. He’s great on a Sunday and he’s got quicker with his one-lap pace on Saturday. He was always reliable too.
“He’s a true professional and we look forward to the remaining races with Checo. We hope he can go out on a high and hopefully race against him in the future. But when a four-time World Champion like Sebastian becomes available, that doesn’t happen every day or every year, and we had to consider our options deeply.
“We have aspirations to move the team forward and we’re working hard back at Silverstone to invest in all areas of the team to get the infrastructure and resources where they need to be. With Sebastian, I know that he will bring a massive amount to the team. It’s all the experiences gained in winning four World Championships and 53 races - and we want to learn from that.”
Undeniably monumental for Racing Point
Though some remain staunch in their beliefs that Perez should remain in his current seat, Otmar Szafnauer is certainly confident that Sebastian Vettel will be an incredibly valuable addition to the team and help Aston Martin move forward next year; after signing a four-time World Champion, the Racing Point team principal cannot be blamed.