Ferrari’s senior driver, Sebastian Vettel would leave the team at the end of the 2020 season after he failed to reach an agreement with the team on the renewal of his contract, which was supposed to end with the end of the season.
Vettel, who is a four-time world champion, joined Ferrari from Red Bull 2015 and has spent 6 seasons in the team.
The decision to leave, as pointed out by Matteo Binotto, Ferrari team principal, was mutual as both sides could not carry on with the contract talks anymore, and that they no longer shared the same goals and that “the time had come to go our separate ways in order to reach our respective objectives.”
Binotto, who was the one that made the announcement on behalf of the team said, expressed that it was a tough decision to let Vettel go, giving his worth as a driver.
He said, “we closed a cycle with Sebastian. Sebastian has been working in our team for six years. I admire Sebastian, I admire him as a person and as a professional pilot. I hold him in great esteem.” He also added what may have been the cause of the difference in point of view – “There are challenges ahead, and obstacles which are going to be difficult. We talked with Sebastian, and we found out we didn’t share the same goals, short or long-term goals.”
In his words, Vettel said, “In order to get the best possible results in this sport, it’s vital for all parties to work in perfect harmony.” There had been earlier speculations that Vettel and Ferrari were finding it hard to reach common ground because Ferrari was not willing to meet Vettel’s monetary demands.
But Vettel made it clear that “Financial matters have played no part in this joint decision. That’s not the way I think when it comes to making certain choices and it never will be.”
However, Ferrari has gotten a replacement for Vettel after they signed Carlos Sainz Jr, who is currently with McLaren and would join Team Ferrari for the 2021 season.
Vettel has not announced which team he would be joining or whether he would even like to go on racing beyond 2020. But he said he had been using these past few months to reflect on his future and study his priorities.
Written by: Leon Osamor