When the lights went out at Istanbul Park, an uncharacteristic red Ferrari SF1000 zoomed past a horde of cars. Where others were struggling to turn around corners and maintain a straight-line speed, Sebastian Vettel just kept going.
Eventually, he finished P3 and stepped onto the podium – a sight that one had not seen for a very long time. It finally showed that Vettel had become one with the car and gotten the right balance.
It is a shame, however, that this chemistry is coming about with just a few races remaining now in 2020. However, team principal Mattia Binotto feels it could aid Ferrari’s bid to finish strongly ahead of next season.
Binotto is quoted as saying, “I’m very pleased for Sebastian.
“I think a podium for him is very important, finishing third. It’s been a difficult season for him. I think he has started, at least now at the end of the season, to be comfortable with the car and he’s delivering better.”
Indeed, there have been instances of Vettel just struggling to turn effortlessly around some corners in a few races. On occasion, has spun off the track or even crashed into the barriers.
The 51-year-old added, “I think on Sunday, he made a good result, at the start, very consistent, good pace, managing the tyres, and defending the positions.”
“On the last lap, he did well, he took the opportunity – it’s great for him, he finished third, very close to [Sergio] Perez. I’m happy for him. Still three races, hopefully we do well in the next one.” concluded Binotto.
There is no doubt Vettel is still one of the most talented drivers out there on the grid. However, a combination of his own and the team’s mistakes have seen him wane over the past couple of seasons.
His teammate Charles Leclerc has eclipsed him, bringing home 97 points compared to Vettel’s 33. In addition, the Monegasque has become the lead driver at the team, isolating the German in the process.
Vettel will get his chance to re-energize himself when he moves to Aston Martin for 2021. Before he does that, however, Ferrari will want to get the best out of him in what remains of the season.