Coming to Ferrari in 2015, Sebastian Vettel was determined to be the first Scuderia champion since Kimi Räikkönen in 2007 – and to succeed where Fernando Alonso had failed. Alas, in 2017 and 2018, Sebastian Vettel was able to fight Lewis Hamilton for the world title, before losing to the Mercedes armada.
Why this failure? Why are these missed opportunities? As he prepares to leave Maranello, Sebastian Vettel has assured that he has no regrets about those Ferrari years; but he still feels that he has not been free from blame during this period.
“I failed because my mission or my goal was to win the championship with Ferrari. "
“I have no regrets for the past few years. I learned a lot at Ferrari. It's a different team with a different culture and I made a lot of friends there. Ferrari is a special team in different ways. "
“There are things I should have done better. Things that maybe I should have seen earlier, fights that maybe I shouldn't have chosen to fight. But again, I think everything that has happened has brought me to where I am now. "
Does Sebastian Vettel evoke political fights? The occasions when he lost his nerves (as in Baku 2017)? Controversies with the FIA?
“I don't usually talk about what's going on on the track. Losing the car at Hockenheim in half-wet, half-drying conditions – a lot of people say that's a low point. But I'm not talking about that sort of thing, I'm talking about what happened. "
“So if I'm fair and tough, then I've failed. Were there any reasons? Probably yes. But I don't take them as an apology, so whatever happened, I guess it allowed me to take the next step and focus on the next one. "
“But then again, it's probably in my nature and it was natural to do it. And I think I was also right in some of these little arguments and battles, whatever they were. But I think at the end of the day, that's how you mature and learn. "
Sebastian Vettel’s last F1 victory was at the Singapore Grand Prix last year: it was his 53rd. If Lewis Hamilton is out of reach now, the German driver remains the 3rd most victorious driver in F1, behind Michael Schumacher and Lewis Hamilton therefore, but ahead of Alain Prost.
“I'm not sure I'm proud of this statistic. "
“It's not fair if you compare with the past because the drivers before had a lot less races than we do today. So that's a bit wrong in my opinion. They raced a lot, probably in other categories. They must therefore be added as well. But these are not Grand Prix. "