Four-time Formula One world champion Sebastian Vettel will leave Ferrari at the end of the season, as his contract comes to an end. It’s been suggested that Australian Daniel Ricciardo is pipped as the leading candidate to take his place.
“The team and I have realised that there is no longer a common desire to stay together beyond the end of this season,” Vettel said. “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. What’s been happening in these past few months has led many of us to reflect on what are our real priorities in life.”
Vettel continued, saying that he will take time out, “to reflect on what really matters when it comes to my future”, which has fulled speculation of a possible retirement move.
“This is a decision taken jointly by ourselves and Sebastian, one which both parties feel is for the best,” Scuderia Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto said in a statement. “It was not an easy decision to reach, given Sebastian’s worth as a driver and as a person.”
The 2020 F1 season has been sent into a spin due to the Covid-19 pandemic, with no clear dates on when things will restart. The organization did recently lay out a proposed new schedule that would include a no spectator policy initially until it’s safe for fans to gather for live sporting events again.
It’s still unclear as to whether Vettel will remain in the sport, and if so, where he will move to at this stage.