While Mercedes and Red Bull look to be ready to battle for the Formula 1 championship in 2021, Aston Martin’s 2021 car is simply not that good, says rival AlphaTauri’s team boss Franz Tost after watching the first weekend of the F1 season.
Sebastian Vettel joining Aston Martin—the former Racing Point team—after being ousted by Ferrari had been billed as a return to a happy environment for the beleaguered four-tine world champion to thrive in.
However, Vettel struggled massively in Bahrain. He qualified 18th, beating just the Haas cars of Mick Schumacher and Nikita Mazepin, and finished the race among the backmarkers in 15th. Vettel finished 13th in last year’s F1 Drivers’ Standings.
“I don’t feel at home in the car,” Vettel said. “Many things are fighting against me so that I cannot concentrate on the driving. There are a lot of things that we have to take care of.
“Some of the others were two seconds faster.”
After Racing Point’s ‘pink Mercedes’ controversy of last year and Sergio Perez’s victory in that car, many predicted that Vettel might even be a dark horse for a fifth title in 2021.
“Theory is one thing, reality is another,” Alpha Tauri boss Tost told Sport1’s AvD Motor und Sport Magazin. “In reality, the car is not that good. It is very unstable at the rear end.”
However, Tost thinks Vettel still has time to work his way back up to his former speed.
“With his experience, he can bring a team forward. He knows how to win races and world championships,” Tost said.
Fernando Alonso, who also struggled over the weeked in return after a two-year absence from Formula 1, says he is still slowly readjusting to life at F1 speeds. Alonso’s Alpine car suffered with brake issues, and the two-time F1 champion was an early exit. He finished 19th. He completed just 32 of 56 laps. The only driver he beat was Haas’ Nikita Mazepin, who failed to complete a lap after spinning out on the first lap.
“I think all the drivers who have changed teams—Carlos (Sainz), (Daniel) Ricciardo, (Sebastian) Vettel—need more time,” Alonso told Spanish broadcaster DAZN.
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