Sebastian Vettel was released by Ferrari because of the coronavirus outbreak, as confirmed by Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto.
The ‘Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari’ saga has rumbled on for quite a while now, reaching its breaking point after it was confirmed Vettel will not be a Ferrari driver next season. As a result, Carlos Sainz will replace him, and partner Charles Leclerc through 2021.
Ferrari fans had expressed shock following this decision, especially considering Vettel is a four-time world champion, and still a top driver. Ferrari have been struggling as a unit, so it was considered unfortunate for Vettel to face the brunt.
Sebastian Vettel on Ferrari contract talks
The outrage reached boiling point after yesterday’s press conference, where a candid Vettel told he wasn’t offered an extension. He went on to reveal that the decision to remove him was taken without a discussion with him.
“There was no sticking point. It was obviously a surprise to me when I got the call from Mattia when he told me that there was no further intention from the team to continue.
“We never got into any discussions, there was never an offer on the table and therefore, there was no sticking point.” His mask hid most of his face, bit his eyes were not hiding his disappointment.
Mattia Binotto on coronavirus outbreak and Sebastian Vettel exclusion
Now, Ferrari Boss has spoken out, seconding Vettel’s comments. As per Tobi Gruner, Binotto clarified Ferrari took the call after the Covid-19 outbreak. They also had to keep in mind the new regulations coming into F1 while taking the decision. This comes after Sainz had revealed before the outbreak that Ferrari were in touch with him.
Mattia Binotto confirmed Ferrari had changed it’s plans with Vettel after the situation changed with Corona and all the rule changes. Says he understands Seb is not happy with the decision.#AMuS
— Tobi Grüner 🏁 (@tgruener) July 3, 2020
This treatment of Vettel by Ferrari has not gone down well with the ‘Tifosi’. It wouldn’t be a surprise if Vettel ignores any team orders from Binotto this season.
According to various specualtions, Vettel could take a sabbatical from F1 next season. If he decides to continue, Renault and Aston Martin (Racing Point) look most likey at the moment.