Sebastian Vettel admits he needs to deliver better performances in 2020 after being beaten by teammate Charles Leclerc this season.
Leclerc was promoted to Ferrari after just one season in Formula 1 and duly outperformed his more experienced teammate, securing the most pole positions of any driver on the grid and winning two races to Vettel’s one. Vettel finished 24 points behind Leclerc in the drivers’ championship and concedes he will focus on where he can improve his personal performances next year.
“I think I’ve been honest — I’ve always done what I can do,” Vettel said. “I’ve been around for long enough, and I’m honest enough to admit. Here and there, I should have done a better job, I know there is more from my side.
“Clearly I look at myself first, address all the points I think need to be addressed … so there are things I can do better, that I know I can do better. That’s the first thing I look at and try to do better next year.”
While being self-critical, Vettel says he doesn’t need to make radical changes to his driving to be more successful, having been the lead Ferrari driver in each of his previous seasons with the team.
“I don’t think there is rocket science to be changed; it’s always in the details, small adjustments, nothing big and major.
“I don’t need to drive differently — I know how to drive. We all work together trying to improve the car, trying to make it faster for both of us, but you’re always looking at yourself. I’m not doing the same stuff as I did 10 years ago — I’ve evolved. And I think to the better, but certainly here and there, there are things you always feel you can do better.
“In the end, it’s small things. The moment you step in the car, you always try to extract the maximum. As a whole, as a team, we weren’t as competitive as we would want. We spent the first half of the year trying to really understand where we were lacking performance, trying to be precise, finding answers, trying a lot of things. Here and there, we could have focused on the day performance but it’s also part of the process.
“The way I was driving here and there, I’ve had a couple of mistakes that I shouldn’t make. Obviously in terms of approach, maybe small things I can do.”