Aston Martin team boss Otmar Szafnauer says Sebastian Vettel is craving for information from his new team and “asking all the right questions” as he continues to settle in.
After six years with Ferrari, Vettel is opening a new chapter in his career with Aston Martin, an endeavor with the Silverstone-based team that he hopes will revive a lustre tarnished during his final season with the Scuderia.
While Vettel’s talent remains intact at just 33, his motivation to fight at the highest level has been questioned by pundits. But Szafnauer puts those doubts to rest, based on his recent interaction with the four-time world champion.
“The way I look at it, at 33-years-old you don’t forget how to drive a Formula 1 racing car fast,” Szafnauer said in an interview with Sky Sports.
“He definitely hasn’t forgotten how to do that, and for sure the work ethic is still there, he’s really really hungry to perform.
“His attitude coming into here is he wants to continue racing if it can be fun, and fun for him means being competitive, working really hard, extracting every bit of performance out of a car, and achieving what the team can achieve and being a big part of that. He’s highly motivated.”
Szafnauer added that Vettel’s motivation is embodied by his incessant quest for knowledge, a quality that has led him to be described as “having a performance engineer behind the wheel.”
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“We’ve started working with him this year already and you can see it,” commented the Aston team boss. “He asks all the right questions, a lot of them and he’s really hungry for knowledge.
“An engineer described Sebastian to me as having a performance engineer behind the wheel.
“He wants to know as much if not more than the performance engineer you have working on the car, whose job it is to understand every little aspect of car performance.
“Seb wants to know that much, plus more. That’s a good trait to have,” Szafnauer added.
“He has that and carried that with him to our team. We see it and he is really really hungry to have fun again in Formula 1. But like I said, fun to him means being competitive.”
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