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What has gone wrong with Sebastian Vettel
#1
Love him as a guy he is funny and generous too but there is no question he is sinking fast and as a 4 time world champion that is both astonishing and disappointing to me.

What has gone wrong with him if anything. It looks more and more like his 4 wins were more car than driver orientated (Lets not argue here you need a combination of BOTH to win a WDC)

I will be interested to hear opinions here because I truly cannot understand it, what I see a lot in him these days is he cracks under pressure and although that can be true of any driver in any given race his track record (excuse the pun) is horrible.
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#2
I dont think any of us can actually say, some will say he was never that good anyway & it was all the RBR, some say it has a lot to do with life away from the track, settling down and having kids and some that he no longer has that "arm" around him and hasnt for a while now.
edit: for all we know it could be a combo of all these factors and simply lost his edge/touch, sorry Neil not much help
"You live more for 5 minutes going fast on a bike than other people do in all of their life"....Marco Simoncelli
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#3
I think Arrivabene going was mostly down to Seb, because Seb was not happy at Ferrari under Arrivabene who expected him to perform and let it be known he didn't think he was. Sure, publicly Arrivabene defended him, but it is no secret he pushed to have Leclerc in the second car, and amazingly Binottoe didn't think that was a wise move and wanted Kimi to stay on to keep Seb. Ultimately Seb has had the ultimate revenge by having Arrivabene bombed out of the team... although that's looking increasingly like a HUGE mistake. Binotto getting shot of all the Quality Assurance and marginal gains managers that Arrivabene brought in also looks like a mistake. Long story short Seb is not happy at Ferrari, hasn't been since 2017 I think.

Next, I don't think Seb was ever as good as the RBR made him out to be. Please bear with me on this one, firstly ask yourself if you think Mark Webber was a top F1 driver? You see I don't, I think Webber was OK on his day, but he was never going to threaten any of the record books, and he kept Seb honest, and that's with the team clearly favouring Seb. That says a lot. Then as soon as Ricciardo came into the team Seb looked ordinary, and he buggered off to Ferrari where he had a compliant number 2. Now with Leclerc there we're all questioning whether Leclerc is better than him. So yeah, I think we have to question how good Seb really is, there's no question in my mind that he is quick. He is. Give him a clear track and he'll give anyone a run for their money against the stopwatch. However, in wheel to wheel stuff he has often been found wanting, he's not as poor as some make out, but he's not the best.

Thirdly the competition. Lets be fair to Seb, and also acknowledge the era of F1 he has been driving in. In other era's I genuinely think the likes of Rosberg and Button would have been multiple champions. Then you have nearly men like Massa who were damn fine drivers, and people like Ricciardo and Bottas who are also both very rapid. Then you've got youngsters like Max, Charles, Ocon and now a few others coming through who are exceptional... and that's before we mention Alonso and of course Hamilton. This age of F1 we are genuinely blessed with some truly amazing drivers, and against that Seb has performed reasonably well. I don't think he was in the same bracket as Alonso or Hamilton, I don't, but he was in the next bracket down and has made the most of what he has had in his career, and that's to his credit, and I don't begrudge him that, but now as he is settling down with his family I question whether his drive is still there. Maybe if he was in a Mercedes it would be, but when you look at how Lewis and Alonso drobve in uncompetitive cars I don't see the same from Seb. Sad to say it but his career seems to be fizzling out, but he can hold his head up high because of what he has achieved.
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#4
Yeah Jody but what you must remember is Arrivabene was ALWAYS going out the door according to Sergio Marchionne`s plans, it just so happened Sergio`s death and the top table squabbling he got the push earlier than planned.
"You live more for 5 minutes going fast on a bike than other people do in all of their life"....Marco Simoncelli
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#5
I do think Vettel is a top driver, or at least he used to be. Maybe not as good as Hamilton or Verstappen, even not the level of Ricciardo, but still quite up there.

But, he entered Ferrari as a next Schumacher wich he surely is not. Not that good as a driver, but not that good either at building and carrying a team. Still Ferrari thought that and so did he. Vettel became to comfortable there with a teammate that wasn't sharp enough and a team that seemed without a leader and accepted Vettel as it.
Then the fight with Mercedes started and Mercedes/Hamilton were clearly a bridge to far. This is killing Vettel over the years (you see it when the pressure is there) and then Leclerc comes along. This might be the last year of a number 1 Vettel, maybe even the last year of Vettel in F1.

To be clear; this is just my undocumented thought. It says and means nothing and I can be completely wrong.
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#6
It's all opinions Antilochos, so nothing right or wrong. I too think Vettel is a damn fine driver, he's just not quite at the level the likes of Schumacher, Alonso, Senna, Prost and of course Hamilton are / were. That's nothing to be embarrassed about, because when you look at that list, sure throw in your Lauda's et al and you're on your way to a top 10 of F1 drivers of all time, just don't think Vettel belongs in that list, but only 10 drivers do.
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#7
I refrained from coming in too early on this thread as I know I have a reputation as a Vettel basher and I thought it better to give others a chance to give their views. I admit I am very critical of him, but only because I have watched his races right throughout his career and I honestly think he is missing some important ingredients to be classed right up there with the best. He is a four times WDC and nobody can take that away from him, I have zero WDC so my opinions are just that, opinons. Just for the record, I think he is a cracking person with a great sense of humour and a very strong moral compass. In other words, a really nice guy. We aren't discussing his character here.

Back on F1 topic, when he has the right car under his arse he is as fast as anyone over one lap. He also has well proven credentials for leading races from the front, that is undisputed. Where he shows weakness is when under pressure from within his own team and also in wheel to wheel combat fighting for on track position with other teams. During his RBR glory years he did not really have any inter team threat so was free do do his thing out front. He did that very well indeed, nobody can argue otherwise. When Dan Ricciardo became his team mate at the start of the hybrid era the cracks did not take long to appear. That season was all anyone needed to show that Seb does not respond well to a strong team mate and any internal competition.

I like him as a person, but amongst his current peers I would rate him as nothing more than average (we are blessed with a lot of very talented drivers in this era). I know that is harsh, especially given his past impressive record, but there are just too many on the current grid I would place ahead of him on racecraft. Very, very good F1 driver, not in the top tier.
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