Vettel admits he was ‘hoping for more’ from maiden season with Aston Martin
Sebastian Vettel is readying for his second season at Aston Martin. But the four-time champion admitted that his first with the Silverstone-based squad wasn’t ideal when it came to results, as he hopes for more this year.
Vettel joined Aston Martin from Ferrari for the 2021 season. And while he managed a podium in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix and finished P2 in the Hungarian GP – before being disqualified for a fuel irregularity – Vettel would score just 43 points overall to finish 12th in the standings last year.
Asked if the last campaign was what he “signed up for” with Aston Martin, Vettel replied: “Yes and no. I think the team’s great; I really enjoy working with the team, and I think it’s been a big change obviously.
“But no in terms of the results, obviously. The whole team and myself, we were hoping for more. I think we got hurt quite badly by the regulation changes as the team had a great car [in 2020] but not [in 2021], so we did what we could,” he said.
As a consolation, however, the German racer also received the Crypto.com Overtake Award in 2021 and added: “It’s been a long year, lots of overtakes. Obviously, we had some qualifying sessions that didn’t go our way and had to make our way up in the race, sometimes more [successfully] than other times.
“I did enjoy it. The midfield was very tight, and obviously fighting with Fernando [Alonso] is special. It’s been quite a while that we’ve been fighting and some memories came back, and last time we properly had a fight was for the championship. It was good fun but obviously we are aiming to be a bit further up the grid next year and challenging for… bigger trophies.
Aston Martin will reveal their 2022 challenger on February 10 and hope to work their way back to the top of the midfield and beyond – with a long term goal of challenging for titles, with owner Lawrence Stroll having invested heavily into his team’s infrastructure.
“There have been some up and downs but obviously high hopes for  with the new car, new regulations, and the team growing and hopefully getting stronger,” added Vettel.
The squad formerly known as Racing Point and Force India announced long-serving team boss Otmar Szafnauer's departure from the team in January, with ex-BMW Motorsport boss Mike Krack brought in to replace him – Krack having worked with Vettel at BMW Sauber back when the German was the team's test driver.