While Gerhard Berger expects Sebastian Vettel to come fighting back in the 2020 Formula 1 season, he doesn't dare predict the outcome of his...
Sebastian Vettel is a German Formula 1 driver who drives for Scuderia Ferrari. Born on July 3rd 1987, Vettel is a four-time F1 champion with Red Bull Racing. He remains the youngest champion and the youngest pole-sitter of all time.
After his move to Ferrari in 2015, Vettel has failed to become a champion with the Italian team, as he’s been fighting with Mercedes rival Lewis Hamilton for years now. Ferrari hope Vettel will be the one to break the championship drought, which has now lasted over a decade.
Sebastian Vettel – Young Bull
At the age of 11, Sebastian Vettel was accepted into the Red Bull Junior Team, when he was still karting. Winning all kinds of series, he made the step to open-wheeled cars in 2003.
After dominating the Formula BMW championship, Vettel moved to Formula 3 in 2005, while also testing for Formula 1 team BMW Sauber.
His testing duties continued and intensified in 2006, as the teenager became BMW Sauber’s third driver at the Turkish Grand Prix. During his first Free Practice, Vettel also broke a bizarre record; he got a penalty just six seconds into his F1 career for speeding in the pitlane.
The next big thing in Formula 1
Vettel’s F1 debut came unexpected. BMW star Robert Kubica had a massive accident at the Canadian Grand Prix and couldn’t compete at the United States Grand Prix, allowing Vettel to man the car. He finished eighth and became the youngest driver ever to score points in F1 at 19 years old. The record has since been broken by Max Verstappen.
For the last seven races of the season, Vettel got the permanent season at Toro Rosso, replacing Scott Speed.
2008 was the year when Vettel broke through, and the highlight was at the Italian Grand Prix. Sebastian Vettel became the youngest driver ever in F1 to get pole position, and followed that up on Sunday by becoming the youngest driver ever to win a Grand Prix at 21 years and 74 days of age. The latter record would later be broken by Max Verstappen.
Vettel finished the year in eighth, and it remains the only year in history that Toro Rosso outperformed Red Bull.
Red Bull dominance
After impressing at Toro Rosso, Vettel got the promotion to Red Bull in 2009, replacing David Coulthard and teaming up with Mark Webber.
In the third race of the season in China, Vettel got pole position and the win, both of which were the first-ever for Red Bull. Before turning 22, Vettel had already won a race for two different F1 teams. Again, a record. The German finished the season winning four races and runner-up behind Jenson Button.
2010 was when the Red Bull dominance started. Vettel qualified on pole position a whopping ten times, while winning five races to become the youngest driver ever to win an F1 world championship at 23 years and 135 of age. It took back-to-back wins from Vettel in Brazil and Abu Dhabi to take the title from Fernando Alonso, who led the championship headed into the final race.
The next season was utterly dominated by Vettel. The German got pole position an incredible 15 times in 19 races, winning 11 of them as he breezed to his and Red Bull’s second title. He won the title with four races to spare.
2012 was another title-winning year for Vettel, but it was close. After winning just one of the opening 13 races, Vettel found himself behind Fernando Alonso in the standings. The German then pulled off an incredible four consecutive wins to get back on top, and finally won the championship by finishing sixth in Brazil. Alonso lost out by three points.
It felt like Vettel was due for another dominant year, and we got one in 2013. The German won his fourth consecutive title, while winning the last nine races on the calendar, a record which hasn’t been broken. He won a total of 13 races.
Red Bull decline and Ferrari switch
In 2014, with new regulations kicking in, Red Bull’s dominance was suddenly over. Vettel didn’t win a single race and finished behind new teammate Daniel Ricciardo and Williams driver Valtteri Bottas in the championship; fifth.
Vettel announced his move to Ferrari at the end of the year, a boyhood dream of his, as his idol growing up was Michael Schumacher in the Ferrari.
Although Formula 1 was utterly dominated by Mercedes in 2015, Vettel did well to grab a single pole position and three wins in 2015, finishing third in the championship but miles ahead of teammate Kimi Raikkonen.
2016 became Vettel’s second winless season of his career as Mercedes won 19 of the 21 races that year, while also getting pole position all but one time.
The Lewis Hamilton rivalry
2017 was the year when Ferrari finally started to compete again with Mercedes. Sebastian Vettel won three of the opening six races and finished second in the other three, and he led the championship for over half of the season.
Then, his rival Lewis Hamilton took over, winning five of the final nine races and clinching his fourth title, equalling him to Vettel.
2018 became the ‘Fight for Five’, as both Vettel and Hamilton were looking for their fifth championships. Again, Vettel led for most of the first half of the season, but with Hamilton winning eight of the last 11 races, the Brit came out victorious and won the battle over Vettel.
Born in Heppenheim, Germany, Vettel is in a relationship with childhood friend Hanna Prater. The two have had two children together, Emilie and Matilda. Vettel’s younger brother Fabian is also a racing driver, but in GT cars rather than open-wheeled.
Vettel’s net worth is estimated around $100 million, and he’s famously not active on social media.
Sebastian Vettel News
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