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Schumacher: Vettel wants to drive again

Ralf Schumacher: Vettel wants to drive again

Schumacher: Vettel wants to drive again

Former Formula 1 driver Ralf Schumacher discussed Mercedes’ options to replace Ferrari-bound Lewis Hamilton, claiming Sebastian Vettel may be looking to make a return to the sport.

In what will be the longest silly season in F1, all eyes are on Mercedes to see their driver choice to replace Lewis Hamilton who is heading to Ferrari in 2025.

Mercedes boss Toto Wolff recently said that his team can be bold in their choice of Hamilton’s successor, with many understanding the statement as a hint that the eight-time Constructors’ Champions are planning to field their young driver Andrea Kimi Antonelli who is making his Formula 2 debut in 2024.

And while many drivers have been link to the vacant 2025 Mercedes seat, Fernando Alonso, Carlos Sainz, to name a couple, some have also mentioned that retired four-time F1 Champion Sebastian Vettel may be an option, in what would be a sensational announcement, should it happen.

Fellow German Ralf Schumacher, a former F1 driver turned pundit, sparked speculation claiming Vettel may indeed be looking to return to F1 after retiring at the end of the 2022 season, when he was an Aston Martin driver.

Speaking to Sky Sports Germany over the course of the pre-season test in Bahrain last week, Schumacher said: “I’ve heard that Sebastian Vettel wants to drive again.

“Of course, you have to close a gap now. You saw what happened on the stock market after Lewis Hamilton’s switch to Ferrari, that triggered something,” he added.

George Russell is now tipped to become the Mercedes team leader in the aftermath of his seven-time F1 Champion teammate to Ferrari, with Wolff admitting the young Briton is the future of the team, but Schumacher believes Vettel would be a better choice to represent the team from a marketing point of view.

Hamilton’s shoes too large for Russell to fill?

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He said: “Whether George Russell has the charisma to replace Lewis Hamilton worldwide in terms of marketing or a Sebastian Vettel as a German driver at Mercedes is probably a bit too big for him.”

Schumacher added that Mercedes are far from recovering from their slump, reasoning that was the reason Hamilton decided to leave to Ferrari after 12 years with the Silver Arrows.

“I’m a bit disappointed with Mercedes, I have the feeling that things will continue as they did last year. That could also be a reason why Lewis Hamilton lost faith and followed Fred Vasseur’s call,” the German reckoned.

While nothing can be ruled out in F1, the prospect of Vettel making a comeback seems to be a long shot, as the driver who won his four F1 Titles with Red Bull, looked increasingly disenchanted with the sport in his final couple of years.

After joining Ferrari in 2015 following his successful Red Bull stint, Vettel failed to deliver the Title for Maranello for various reasons, some his fault and some Ferrari’s.

He became more error prone and was eclipsed by Charles Leclerc who became his teammate in 2019, and was soon ousted to make way for Carlos Sainz.

He spent his final couple of years in F1 with Aston Martin, the highlight delivering the team’s maiden podium in Baku in 2021.

Would Vettel be interested in returning to F1 with a team that is far from being the dominant force it was in the start of the turbo-hybrid era.

Also, let’s not forget that Wolff himself ruled out Vettel from the running claiming they are always in touch, but not regarding a drive. Smoke and Mirrors?

Big Question: Will Sebastian Vettel make a comeback with Mercedes in 2025?