He has not won in two months. In the formula 1 standings, he is behind his worst rival. But it seems that sebastian vettel is not going to mind.
On the contrary, he is relaxed. At least that’s how the ferrari driver seems this season. Even in the paddock at the canada grand prix in montreal, he’s laughing, chatting with the media, joking. The four-time world champion shows no sign of the excitability of past years. Verbal outbursts against colleagues or officials – absent this year.
Is this tactic because he does not want to show his rivals, such as the defending champion and world championship leader lewis hamilton, nervositat? Or does he not want to unnecessarily fuel the easily heated atmosphere in italy surrounding the scuderia?? Or has he really found his inner peace at the age of 30 – and possibly the way to the longed-for title with ferrari??
Just a year ago, the swiss-based driver from heppenheim arrived at the circuit on the ile notre-dame in the st. Lorence river with a comfortable 33 points in the drivers’ standings. He had also previously won the prestigious race in monaco. But the serenity, as the 2018 vettel issue shows, did not like to set in with him then. "Every year is different, the car is completely different," the 30-year-old said ahead of sunday’s seventh of 21 races of the season (20.10 a.M. CEST) in response to corresponding questions about the differences between 2017 and 2018.
And especially the latter may well contribute to his current state of mind. For the first time in what is now his fourth season with ferrari, vettel seems to have the certainty of driving a reliable and title-tested service car. "We have a car that is fast on any type of track and has good top speed," he emphasized.
He sees himself and his team finally on a par with mercedes and its chief driver hamilton. Even though the briton is currently leading the overall standings with a 14-point lead and vettel himself has been waiting for a victory since his races in melbourne and bahrain at the end of march and the beginning of april.
"All three teams are more or less eye to eye," said vettel, also including his ex-team red bull with two-time season winner daniel ricciardo and max verstappen in the round of favorites.
But the german is also careful not to raise expectations too high. When hamilton gives him the role of favorite, he dutifully rejects it again. Especially in montreal, six-time canada winner hamilton finds it easy to talk ferrari up. Finally, the 33-year-old has to do without the announced improvements to his mercedes engine and wait another two weeks. And this on the route that requires a lot of power.
But even now, vettel does not make the mistake of being too brash. He does not know how rough the step would have been if mercedes had already brought the new engine to montreal, he said. "In the end it is also irrelevant. We have brought everything with us. We’ll be revealing that on saturday at the latest," explained the heppenheim driver with an eye on the qualifying race. "And then we’ll see where we are." At the moment he seems as if he is very with me.