Horner: We're not seeing the "real" Vettel in F1 2020

Red Bull Formula 1 boss Christian Horner has defended Sebastian Vettel after his difficult start to the 2020 season and doesn't think we've seen the "real" four-time world champion

Horner: We're not seeing the "real" Vettel in F1 2020

Vettel won four world championships with Red Bull in 2010-2013 before joining Ferrari in 2015, where he has since won 14 races with the Italian team and was runner-up in the standings in 2017 and 2018.

However he will not be retained in 2021, and thus far this season he has struggled to match team-mate Charles Leclerc.

Horner was asked by Autosport if Vettel was struggling now in part because cars have changed since he excelled in the days of blown diffusers.

"Well, not really," said Horner.

"I mean, Sebastian drove with refuelling, no refuelling, blown diffusers, no diffusers, f-ducts, no f-ducts, DRS, no DRS.

"He drove a whole variance of different cars over the years.

"And obviously what he achieved in the period during those years with Red Bull was quite special.

"I think he's the third most successful driver in the history of the sport.

"And he has achieved some incredible things, many records which will stand for some time.

"So, for whatever reason, things aren't working for him at the moment.

"I think any driver has to be happy in their environment, and you can see that he's carrying quite a lot of weight on his shoulders.

"And that has a bearing on any on any sportsman, on any athlete.

"So I don't think we're seeing the real Sebastian Vettel at the moment.

"He's obviously having a difficult time with the product that he has at the moment. But you can't take away anything that he's achieved obviously in his career to date."

Vettel himself insists that he hasn't given up on 2020, and he wants to finish his Ferrari career on a high.

"I think as a team we obviously try to make progress, and individually try to make the best out of the situation," he said.

"It is what it is, it's not an easy one, but as I said, we are trying to make the most out of it.

"I trust the people that I have around me, the guys in the garage.

"There's a lot of people, I've said this before, who have given so much over the years.

"It's only a sign of respect to give everything that I have back as well, independent of the amount of races that I have left for the team.

"So I think I don't look at it that way to be honest, I don't look at the negatives or the bad things.

"I think first of all, I'm not counting the races, I'm going race by race, and I'm trying to do my job, to do the best I can looking forward.

"I'm always optimistic, and rather see the opportunity than the struggles.

"Independent of what happens next year and the years after that, I'm trying to enjoy the time that I have left with the guys that I've spent so much time with in the last years."

shares
comments
New Williams F1 team owner has no links to Ecclestone

Previous article

New Williams F1 team owner has no links to Ecclestone

Next article

F1 Belgian GP: Verstappen leads Ricciardo in second practice at Spa

F1 Belgian GP: Verstappen leads Ricciardo in second practice at Spa
Load comments
The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog Plus

The squandered potential of a 70s F1 underdog

A podium finisher in its first outing but then never again, the BRM P201 was a classic case of an opportunity squandered by disorganisation and complacency, says STUART CODLING

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from Plus

The other notable Monza escape that F1 should learn from

OPINION: The headlines were dominated by the Italian Grand Prix crash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton, who had the halo to thank for avoiding potentially serious injury. But two days earlier, Formula 1 had a lucky escape with a Monza pitlane incident that could also have had grave consequences

Formula 1
Sep 17, 2021
How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum Plus

How Monza only added more questions to F1's sprint race conundrum

With two sprint races under its belt, Formula 1 must now consider its options for them going forward. While they've helped deliver exciting racing on Sundays, the sprints themselves have been somewhat lacking - creating yet another conundrum for F1 to solve...

Formula 1
Sep 16, 2021
Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season? Plus

Who should Alfa Romeo sign for 2022's F1 season?

OPINION: With Valtteri Bottas already signed up for 2022, all eyes are on the race for the second seat at Alfa Romeo next year. Antonio Giovinazzi is the current incumbent, but faces a tough competition from appealing short and long-term prospects

Formula 1
Sep 15, 2021
The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence Plus

The "forced break" that was key to Ricciardo's Monza excellence

OPINION: Daniel Ricciardo has long been considered one of Formula 1’s elite drivers. But his struggles at McLaren since switching from Renault for 2021 have been painful to watch at times. Yet he’s recovered to banish those memories with a famous Monza win – built on a critically important foundation

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton Plus

How Verstappen is ruining his F1 title battle with Hamilton

OPINION: The Italian GP clash between Lewis Hamilton and Max Verstappen followed a running theme in the 2021 Formula 1 title fight. Their close-quarters battles have often resulted in contact - and although Hamilton has shown a willingness to back off, Verstappen must learn to temper his aggression

Formula 1
Sep 14, 2021
Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings Plus

Italian Grand Prix Driver Ratings

Two drivers produced maximum-score performances as, for the second year in a row, Monza threw up an unpredictable result that left several others ruing what might have been

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021
Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash Plus

Why Ricciardo was set for Monza F1 triumph even without Verstappen/Hamilton crash

The clash between Max Verstappen and Lewis Hamilton was the major flashpoint the 2021 Italian Grand Prix will be remembered for. Yet by this point, race leader Daniel Ricciardo had already done the hard work that would put him in position to end his and McLaren's lengthy win droughts, on a memorable afternoon in Monza

Formula 1
Sep 13, 2021