Vettel ‘not 100% there but close’ – Aston Martin

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Ian

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Aston Martin team principal Otmar Szafnauer believes Sebastian Vettel is now close to finally being 100 per cent settled inside the AMR21.

Following his arrival from Ferrari over the winter, Vettel conjured by far his best drive for the F1 team in Monaco, ending his points drought with fifth place courtesy of a fine strategic move.

Across the weekend, and at one of his favourite tracks, Vettel delivered a display more in keeping with his four-time champion status, highlighting why the team opted to sign him rather than retaining Sergio Perez.

Szafnauer said: “He’s getting more and more comfortable in the car and the margins are really, really tight, especially in the midfield.

“If you don’t feel comfortable in the car and you don’t push it to its limits, just barely
away from it, then you are a tenth [of a second] off or two-tenths off.

“But he feels more comfortable in the car, and there is no more difficult track to drive than Monaco if you don’t feel comfortable.”

Vettel in same boat as Perez, Sainz, Ricciardo

Like the other drivers who changed team over the winter – Carlos Sainz, Perez and Daniel Ricciardo, along with Fernando Alonso following his return to F1 – the switch has not been an easy transition.

“He is not a hundred per cent there,” added Szafnauer. “I spoke to him about it coming into this weekend but he is close.

“He feels much more comfortable, and after every race and qualifying session, he gets closer and closer.

“I’ve talked to other drivers, too, who have switched teams and are going through the same or similar process and they said their guess was it was going to take about five races for them to really feel comfortable.

“My guess for Seb, I mean we are trying to predict the future, is that it will probably be in that realm too.”

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