“Not that dissimilar to Lance” – Aston Martin F1 boss Otmar Szafnauer has defended Sebastian Vettel after Bahrain Grand Prix.
Fun fact: Sebastian Vettel is driving a Mercedes for the first time in his F1 career. The German legend has driven BMW and Ferrari before, and also won 4 titles with Renault. The newness of the Merc engine played a role in Vettel’s struggle at Bahrain, according to his Aston Martin F1 CEO Otmar Szafnauer.
“The car he’s driving now is totally different than what he drove before [in terms of] car characteristics, powertrain characteristics, a lot of things. He only really felt happy with the car – getting to grips, to know it and make set-up changes that suit him – in qualifying, when he had the yellow flags.
Last night was a battle. The first of many to come this season. But we’re up for the fight. 👊
— Aston Martin Cognizant F1 Team (@AstonMartinF1) March 29, 2021
“So it’s hard to know but it’s really early days. He didn’t do a lot of laps in winter testing, we only had three days of winter testing, he had to share those days with Lance [Stroll] and he seemed to have all the problems. So I’m still confident we’ll get Seb there.
“He started last and made his made his way up but, like I said, we struggled on the hard tyre, he went on the hard tyre pretty early, so we’ve got to understand that. I’ll have to talk to him, I think he’s getting there.”
Sebastian Vettel is targeting a resurgence this season after leaving Ferrari empty-handed. There is genuine hope that returning team Aston Martin can mount a serious challenge for the title by next year.