Sebastian Vettel reportedly considering Aston Martin contract for 2021


Could Racing Point be about to swoop in for Sebastian Vettel for 2021?

Sebastian Vettel, 2020 Styrian GP

Vettel's F1 options are quickly drying up, but how would a switch to Racing Point work?

Peter Fox/Getty Images

Sebastian Vettel has reportedly been offered a contract with Aston Martin for 2021, as rumours build that the four-time world champion will remain on the grid with the rebranded Racing Point team.

Ousted from Ferrari in favour of Carlos Sainz for 2021, Vettel could replace Sergio Perez, according to a report in German publication Bild.

In Austria, team principal Otmar Szafnauer maintained that both drivers were under contract for next season. However he avoided saying the team was not interested in Vettel.

“I know that people like to think, ‘here’s a team on the rise and Sebastian doesn’t have a drive’, so they put two and two together,” Szafnauer told Sky Sports F1.

“[Our drivers are] contracted. Sergio we announced last year on a three-year deal and Lance [Stroll] has a long-term contract as well.”

Racing Point told Motor Sport it was “flattered” at being linked to Vettel but repeated Szafnauer’s comment that both existing drivers are under contract for next season — without denying that Vettel had been offered a contract.

Perez currently has a two years on his contract and Lance Stroll is seemingly secure as the son of major financial backer Lawrence Stroll.

Vettel himself was complimentary of the team, saying the work and momentum it has generated with its controversial but undoubtedly competitive 2020 car was admirable.

“I think Racing Point left a very strong impression, and certainly are in a good place for this year,” he told media ahead of the Styrian Grand Prix.

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“I know part of the team, I know some members of the team quite well from my past and for a long time, so I think it’s obviously a good opportunity for them this year to have a good car to fight with and try and improve from there.”

With Racing Point looking competitive this season and support from Aston Martin arriving next year, Vettel could well be attracted by the team’s potential.

It was only in 2018 that the team – then known as Force India – was forced into administration by Perez, which resulted in a Lawrence Stroll-led rescue.

At 33, Vettel is almost six years younger than the returning Fernando Alonso, with the potential to race beyond the introduction of new F1 regulations in 2022.

The current Ferrari driver made clear that he had not expected to be left out in the cold, revealing no contract offer to extend his stay with the team alongside Charles Leclerc.

He has said that talks had taken place with Renault before Fernando Alonso’s appointment was confirmed though discussions had been in a very early phase with the French team.

With the top two seats in F1 out of reach, interesting prospects in Renault and McLaren now spoken for and the lack of desire to simply partake in F1, without any prospect of success the Racing Point situation might be Vettel’s only real option for 2021.