F1 drivers have kind words for Sebastian Vettel after he announced retirement from F1 on the eve of the Hungarian GP.

The morning of Thursday of Hungarian GP weekend saw Aston Martin’s Vettel join Instagram with a verified account in a shock for fans. Just before his first post, via his brother Fabian, the German posted a story noting a time of ’12:00′.

Speculation begun about a possible retirement announcement, which was eventually confirmed after he posted a video of the same as his first post. Vettel talks about his career in brief and stated the reasons for him leaving F1 at the end of 2022.

His family life is one of the biggest reasons for Vettel to step down as he looks towards a new adventure with them. While it did come as a shock, but there was an element where many saw the retirement coming considering his age and the position he is in.

A lot of current F1 stars spoke on his pending departure, which goes:

Max Verstappen: “I mean, at the end of the day, he has achieved so much in this sport, that it’s fully understandable for him to retire. I mean, I think he’s had an amazing career. He’s won a lot of races; he’s won a lot of championships as well. And I think of course, he’s a great ambassador for the sport. So, you know, to see him go is… it’s something that you can see coming, everyone is getting older, at one point, everyone is retiring. And is of course, never nice when that moment arrives, especially, of course, for Seb’s fans. But these things happen. And I think it’s important now that he’s just going to enjoy his life with the family, because F1 is such a short period of time in your life that you work so hard to achieve all these things he has achieved and now it’s time to enjoy.”

Lance Stroll: “Just touching on Max’s saying, he’s achieved so much in this sport. He’s been a great team-mate. I’ve really enjoyed working alongside Seb for the last year and a half. We still have half a season to go, but no, it’s been great. I’ve really enjoyed it. And he’s achieved so much. And, you know, this was a chapter in his life that I think he’s now moving on from, he has a family at home and other things to look forward to in life. So, I wish him all the best going forward. He’s definitely achieved so much. It’s been an incredible career for him and we wish him all the best going forward. He’s been a great teammate. I’ll definitely not miss the long debriefs! I think he’s good at that but, kidding aside, he’s just been a great team player and someone that that’s been really easy to work alongside It’s just been fun. He’s a big talent, extremely professional and I think his technical understanding as well, for the car and all that is great. He’s been a great member of the team and someone that that I’ve really enjoyed working alongside. It’s definitely been fun.”

Carlos Sainz: “First of all, wish him all the best now, in the future that he has ahead that I’m sure he’s going to enjoy a lot with kids and family. For me he was, since the beginning, since even before arriving to Formula 1, a great role model. I was privileged enough to be simulator driver when he was at his peak in Red Bull, winning the Championships. I could see how professional he was, and it gave me a very good insight into it how you need to behave, or how do you need to be, to be a successful Formula 1 driver like he was. I remember those years very well. He always had kind words for me, stop and have a chat with me, and give me some advice.

“He’s a great role model as these guys have said already, and he’s ambassador for the sport, but not only for sport but I think also for a younger generation that is coming through, and a type of career that you would look up to no? Always getting on well with all the teams, with everyone. Everyone in the paddock loves him, you know? You will not hear someone speaking bad about Seb. I think this year speaks about his personality. He’s, alive as a human being, not only as a driver, and I think we will miss him. But I hope that we can see him back in the paddock also helping the sport to develop in certain areas that I think he’s very vocal about recently. And I hope that he can keep giving us a hand in that in that side.”

Yuki Tsunoda: “Yeah, to be honest, with him just we have experience just last two years, probably. After I step up to Formula 1. And yeah, he’s a great personality guy. And he’s definitely also a good ambassador for Formula 1. Yeah, I’m really lucky that I’m able to run close to him, especially Aston Martin, and AlphaTauri are quite close to each other this year. So, I learned a lot of things from him, when I’m driving behind him or even in front of him, whatever. We’ve had a chat a couple of times, so yeah, I mean, he’s definitely…  you know, for me, it’s a bit sad but at the same time, was really lucky, and hope he can have an enjoyable time in Formula 1 for the rest of the season.”

George Russell: “Such an inspiration and such a humble bloke I think. As Carlos said, nobody’s got a bad word to say about Seb. He’s good fun to be around. So I’m sure he’s going to be looking forward to, firstly the last half of the season, but everything he’s got planned for the future: family, kids wife and I’m sure he’s not going to stop and… as I said, inspiration.”

Daniel Ricciardo: “It’s, yeah, it’s in a way, sad of course, because you’re losing a bit of a legend of the sport really. And yeah, I personally spent spend some time alongside him, which was, for sure, a privilege. So yeah, it’s one of those ones: you’re sad, but also happy for him now to start chapter two of his life. I learned a lot in 2014 alongside him, and even before that, you know, when I was a reserve driver and just being around the team and watching how he would work it was just always interesting. He had a lot of good traits and a way to get people behind him and rally but also, you know, be very direct and yeah, it was cool. Just a very, very driven individual. And, yeah, I think we’ll obviously certainly miss him. But yeah, obviously wish him well. I mean, like, the simple thing was he was fast. But he was just a very in tune driver, very knowledgeable about the car, the team, the sport, he just lived and breathed it, you know, it was everything and he was just switched on. I know that sounds kind of simple but he just knew everything that was going on. So you could never count him out. And I think, yeah, just his knowledge of the sport and obviously his experience as well was, it was cool, very valuable to be in that environment.

Alexander Albon: “I’d say firstly, I maybe know him a little bit less than the older guys. But no, no, no, no, I’m not saying Daniel’s old! But I got to know him more and more, especially, actually, this year. You can see what he’s been able to do on circuit. He’s one of the very few multiple world champions. And there’s a reason for that. And I think, as Daniel touched upon, you can see that he’s switched on on the track, but also even off the track. And you can see everything he’s doing outside of the sport is also equally very impressive and inspiring. I’m sure as he goes on into his ‘dad future’, he’s going to look forward to that. But I’m also very interested to see what he does outside of that. He’s just got an Instagram account I’ve heard, which is very exciting. So I have to follow him.”

Esteban Ocon: “Well, first of all, I’m very sad to see him leaving. I spoke to him a couple of weeks ago and that’s not the thought I had, you know when I spoke to him about his future and everything. So, you know, I hope he will enjoy retirement and that he will be happy with everything he does. I’m sure he will. But I think on our case, he was a great ambassador, I think of all drivers, and he has raised his voice you know, and when there was concern for our safety and for any sorts of things that he didn’t like, you know, in regards to drivers, and yeah, on that regard I hope he doesn’t stay too far away from the paddock.”

Kevin Magnussen: “Well, I think, you know, as a legend of our sport. Before I came to Formula 1, he was certainly one of the drivers that I was really looking up to and kind of taking inspiration from. In the beginning of his Formula 1 career, he was, you know, very quick and successful. And he was so young when he was successful it was pretty special, and he dominated the sport for a long time. He’s a real legend. So, you know, I too wish him all the best for the future.”

Valtteri Bottas: “Always a really good driver to race against and to race with him. There’s always a certain respect and you can kind of count on him that he’s going to race hard but usually fair. So I really enjoyed the battles. And overall as well just such a nice guy, you know, to get to know and one of those drivers that is not afraid of speaking up about things, which is really, really cool. And he’s really using the platform as well for the right things. So yeah, my respect.”

Lewis Hamilton: “I kind of knew that it was coming, as there’d been hints, but the realisation of it is another thing. And I would just say naturally, my first feeling is it’s sad to see that he’s stopping. And then I have not had a lot of time to think about all the journey that we’ve gone through together. But when I talk about the journey that I’ve felt I’ve experienced in this sport, and kind of often feeling that it’s been relatively lonely, I would say he’s one of the few people that made it not feel lonely. He stood by me through a lot of things. I always remember 2007, the press conference in Magny-Cours, and him being very, very outspoken in the driver’s briefing.

“And I knew then that he was going to be a powerful figure in the sport. But then seeing his success, and then seeing that he puts others before himself and he’s been so brave in speaking out and standing for what he believes in. We talk about legends in our sport. I don’t really love that name, or that title, to be honest. I think he’s one of the greatest people that we’ve seen in the sport. And we need more like him. I’m sad because I will have lost an ally inside the actual sport on the grid. But I know that outside, he’ll be doing great things. And I hope that we will always remain friends. I hope that there’ll be other things that we get to do together outside.”

Charles Leclerc: “It is sad to see Vettel retiring. At least it’s sad for me. Maybe for him he’s much happier in the place he’s going now. Obviously, it’s going to be strange to not see Seb inside the paddock. I’ve learned so much driving with him, and he’s always been super-nice to me. I’ll definitely miss having Seb in the paddock, but I wish him the best and I’m sure he will find other things that will make him happy in another way. There are loads of moments, but it’s definitely not an on-track moment. It’s all the moments at the factory and the way also how our relationship evolved throughout the years because I arrived the first year and I was super impressed. And I think I was probably weird to him because I was just shy and didn’t know what to say when I was with him. But he’s a friend and he always texts me, like he did after Sunday, and always tries to make me feel better when I’m having a tough time. So, it’s nice to see how much I’ve grown since I first met him.”

Sergio Perez: “I feel very proud of Seb, of what he has achieved. He’s a great legend of the sport, he’s a great guy. He’s always been very fair, very vocal, he’s been very successful, has a beautiful family. He has everything you’d hope for a colleague to achieve. So, I’m very proud of him and wish the best to him and his family. I think that’s a very personal decision. I think that’s extremely personal, it’s how you feel and what you want to do and how your family is. When you get older you definitely put other priorities in place, and then you are not willing to pay the price of being an F1 driver because it has a price. Sometimes you are and sometimes you are not.”

Fernando Alonso: “Lewis and Sebastian, both of them probably I share most of my time here. Obviously, Michael will remain always maybe my top pick, because, you know, I was fighting for the championship with him and I grew up watching him in Formula 1, dominating the sport. So, I learned so many things from Michael. And then with Lewis and Seb, yeah, the three of us we shared a lot. We will miss him after so many years, you know, sharing the track together with fights, obviously. His championships, I was somehow in there as well. So yeah, he’s a great champion. Also a great man, with very strong values and lovely family and probably that decision also this, as I heard the family, so wishing him the best, and hopefully, he’s around in the paddock.”

Mick Schumacher: “Of course, I’m very sad on one side. He is obviously going to leave a huge hole in the sport, because he’s such a character in F1, and such a special person. But he’s also such a likeable person. So I’ll miss him very much. It’s much more than just the races. It’s being able to go visit him in the evenings and have dinner with him. That’s what I’m really going to miss. He’s just somebody that I’m able to talk to in my own language. He’s going to be super, super missed by everybody, but especially by me. I wouldn’t say surprised. I mean, I know Seb pretty well. I feel and I know that he’s got other things that he wants to do. And at the end, I feel if he feels it’s the right time, then he should do it. And I feel sometimes it’s also just a matter of gut feeling. So I support it 100%.

“I think nobody can replace Sebastian. That’s a fact. If it’s not on track, it’s in a political way, and I think that yes, it is important to have somebody who speaks up and also attacks those points. But I think Sebastian has not stopped yet. As he said in his video, there’s more to come. And I’m sure that we can all learn from what he still has to say. I’m sure that he will still have a big voice in F1 even if he’s not himself driving. I think he threw the snowball into the get go. It’s building and it’s getting bigger. And with that I’m sure there are more drivers that are starting to speak up, and also speak their minds. But again, I think there’s nobody that can replace Sebastian.”

Here’s his full retirement speech: https://sebastianvettel.de/en/news-en/

Here’s news from Sebastian Vettel about his F1 retirement