Sebastian Vettel has been confirmed as an Aston Martin driver in Formula 1 from 2021 onwards, replacing Sergio Perez at the current Racing Point team.
Racing Point will be rebranded Aston Martin next season as part of owner Lawrence Stroll’s plans to promote the iconic car brand, and to coincide with that the team has targeted four-time world champion Vettel ever since Ferrari opted not to extend his contract. Following the news on Wednesday that Perez is leaving the team at the end of the season – despite having had a contract in place – Vettel’s arrival has now been confirmed.
“I am pleased to finally share this exciting news about my future,” Vettel said. “I’m extremely proud to say that I will become an Aston Martin driver in 2021. It’s a new adventure for me with a truly legendary car company.
“I have been impressed with the results the team has achieved this year and I believe the future looks even brighter. The energy and commitment of Lawrence [Stroll] to the sport is inspiring and I believe we can build something very special together. I still have so much love for Formula 1 and my only motivation is to race at the front of the grid. To do so with Aston Martin will be a huge privilege.”
There is no definitive contract length announced but the German – who won all four of his titles with Red Bull from 2010-13 – is described as signing up “for 2021 and beyond”, in what the team says “is a clear statement of the team’s ambition to establish itself as one of the most competitive names in the sport.”
Team principal Otmar Szafnauer says Vettel’s pedigree and experience are what Aston Martin needs as it looks to fight at the front of the grid.
“Everybody at Silverstone is hugely excited by this news,” Szafnauer said. “Sebastian is a proven champion and brings a winning mentality that matches our own ambitions for the future as Aston Martin F1 Team.
“On a Saturday or Sunday afternoon, Sebastian is one of the best in the world, and I can’t think of a better driver to help take us into this new era. He will play a significant role in taking this team to the next level.”