F1 Throwback: Vettel Nothing Short Of Amazed After His First Ever Test With BMW Sauber in 2006

Published 06/12/2021, 10:15 AM EDT
Formula One F1 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – June 6, 2021 Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel celebrates with sparkling wine and a trophy on the podium after finishing in second place Pool via REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov


At the 2006 Turkish Grand Prix, a 19-year-old Sebastian Vettel drove a Formula One car for the very first time. Since then, there was no looking back for the German, who is one of the most decorated F1 drivers in the sport’s history.

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Vettel is a four-time champion who is currently competing in his 14th full season in F1 with Aston Martin. Although the German has come a long way from his first test with BMW Sauber, a recent tweet brought back memories of that day in Istanbul.

An ‘excited’ Sebastian Vettel impressed during practice in the 2006 Turkish Grand Prix

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Vettel was a test driver for the BMW Sauber team in the 2006 F1 season. At the Turkish Grand Prix, the team gave the German an opportunity to test the car in the practice sessions on Friday, August 25th, 2006.

Vettel wasted no time in grabbing the opportunity, topping the timesheets in the second practice session. Although the German had to wait another year to get compete in his first race, he couldn’t contain his joy in the post-session interview.

Vettel said, “It was amazing, it was unbelievable! I mean, I can’t even find the words to describe it because the feeling I got, especially in the first lap was just something really new.

The German also spoke passionately about the car, detailing every little bit of his first-ever experience. “At the beginning, it was about shifting at the right point, not too late because of the massive power of the engine,” said Vettel.

“Over the straight it’s just acceleration like hell, it was unbelievable, as well as the braking. After some laps, I got some confidence and then I just got to know what the brake could do, and it was amazing! The deceleration as well, it was just as if somebody kicks you in the head. It’s amazing!”

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How is Vettel faring this season?

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Although Vettel struggled in the first four races this season, the German has been resurgent after strong performances in Monaco and Baku. After finishing P5 in the Principality, he claimed his first podium with Aston Martin in the Azerbaijan Grand Prix.

Formula One F1 – Azerbaijan Grand Prix – Baku City Circuit, Baku, Azerbaijan – June 6, 2021 Aston Martin’s Sebastian Vettel sprays sparkling wine at AlphaTauri’s Pierre Gasly on the podium as they celebrate finishing in second and third place respectively Pool via REUTERS/Maxim Shemetov

With the French Grand Prix inching closer, the German will look to continue his resurgence in Le Castellet. His performances will be the key for Aston Martin to stay competitive in the intense midfield battle.

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Sanket Nair

325 articles

Sanket Nair is an F1 Author at EssentiallySports. A Sports Management student, he is a huge fan of Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo and hopes to see Red Bull break Mercedes' dominance and win the World Championship soon. Sanket has been hooked to the sport ever since he watched the battle for the 2010 World Championship go down to the wire at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix.

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