Increasingly Italian media have collectively lost faith in Ferrari’s current number one driver, Sebastian Vettel who yet again tarnished his reputation with a glaring mistake during Sunday’s British Grand Prix.
While Charles Leclerc battled for victory in Austria and raced spectacularly at Silverstone, his teammate Vettel was outqualified and then slammed into Max Verstappen in the race.
“Ferrari has a new leader,” said the authoritative La Gazzetta dello Sport, “Leclerc is combative and energetic and has finally captured the heart of the Ferrari fans.”
And described Vettel as “again disastrous” last Sunday added the report “Vettel has shown that he is not the driver that Ferrari wants. It is now clear that something is no longer working.”
Corriere della Sera declared: “Vettel loses his head once again, while the youngster Leclerc is gaining all the time in prestige.”
La Repubblica added: “For a long time, Vettel has no longer looked like a four-time world champion, while the little prince Leclerc was the Driver of the Day.”
And La Stampa said: “Maranello, we have a problem. Almost like an older brother, Binotto defends Vettel but the driver’s crisis seems to be endless.”
Former F1 driver David Coulthard said Vettel’s current problems remind him of the final days of Michael Schumacher’s career.
“At the end of his career, Michael Schumacher also started hitting other cars and eventually he realised that he was the common denominator,” he is quoted by German media.
Ferreri watcher and columnist, Leo Turrini summed up Vettel’s Sunday, It’s not Seb’s annus horribilis, but the collision with Verstappen is like a black curtain falling.
“Simply, it’s up to him, to Vettel, to look for and give the right answers. I don’t believe in identity crises or even sudden declines. However, no one can know the truth better than the person concerned and the answer must come from Seb. On the track.”
Big Question: Should Ferrari shift Charles to number one status at Ferrari?