Sebastian Vettel speaks on trying different driving styles during Barcelona F1 Test, as he adds on the surprise seeing different designs by teams.
For Aston Martin’s Vettel, he has seen it all in his career with four world championships, 53 wins and close to 300 Grands Prix starts. He now steps into a new era and having driven the AMR22 last week at Barcelona, he believes there is a lot to learn.
With Vettel and teammate Lance Stroll driving, Aston Martin completed 296 laps over the three days of pre-season running in Barcelona. Vettel’s progress was curtailed due to oil leak. on one of the days, however, he was more concerned with the changes that have heralded Formula One’s new beginnings.
“We did a good amount of laps and there’s still a lot to learn for me,” said Vettel to F1 TV. “The car wants to be driven in a different way, I am playing with driving styles and what I can do. Equally we are playing with the car, we are trying to sort some problems that we have, some of the challenges that we’ve faced, find solutions.”
As Vettel noted, he is having to work with different driving styles owing to the new rules and regulations for 2022. He reckons the car wants to be driven differently which shows how much work has to be done, not just by the team but also the drivers.
Vettel has to come up with every trick in the book to get to the crux of the problem. After so many seasons doing things his way and in a certain way, it’s new beginnings for the German and it is the same for the rest of the grid. In some ways, it could be deemed to be who adapts quickest could be successful early.
For drivers, it will be if Plan A doesn’t work, try Plan B, and if not then Plan C. “So, there is still a lot to do, everybody is flat out and there is still a very, very steep, and high, mountain to climb,” said Vettel. “I can’t say at the minute we are seeing the peak, but it’s fun, I think the challenge is fun and the belief is there that one day we will reach that peak, hopefully just before the season.
“I think it is going to be a long year anyway. Everybody is probably in the same boat in terms of learning these cars and having certain troubles, but so far all is good,” summed up Vettel, who on a trip along the paddock and pitlane in Barcelona, also noticed differences between the new car design of each team which surprised him.
“I’m surprised there is such a big difference, I was expecting the cars to look more alike,” said Vettel. “It’s good to see that people chose different routes in philosophies in car design. Which one proves to be right, we will see; I hope that they are all right and would be great if all the cars are very close to each other and [there is] not a big spread amongst the field.”
There is still time for the teams to get to grips with their new contenders as Bahrain Test follows on March 10-12 before the first Grand Prix at the same venue. For Aston Martin and for Vettel, they will be looking to bridge the gap to Alpine and AlphaTauri in 2022.
With new rules and regulations designed to spice things up and bring the field closer together in 2022, if Vettel and Aston Martin hit the ground running, they might not just bridge the gap to them, but they may dare to dream of further up the grid.
Here’s Lance Stroll and others on 18-inches tyres