Martin Brundle disagrees with Hamilton about Vettel after F1 farewell

Sebastian Vettel to retire from F1 at end of season

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Martin Brundle does not expect Sebastian Vettel to return to F1, despite Lewis Hamilton’s certainty that the legendary German driver will make a comeback to the grid. Vettel waved an emotional goodbye to the paddock at the season-closing Abu Dhabi after a storied 16-year spell in the sport. 

The four-time F1 champion claimed a point for Aston Martin on his final race at the Yas Marina circuit after confirming his retirement earlier in the season. Vettel was undoubtedly one of the most admired figures on the grid and that was highlighted by the brilliant farewell he received from his peers in Abu Dhabi. 

F1 drivers piled praise on the German for his profound impact on the sport for over a decade and a half. Vettel then showed his popularity as hundreds of people working in F1 joined him on a jog around the track on the evening before his last hurrah in Sunday’s race. 

Vettel has various interests outside of F1 and his desire to spend more time with his young family influenced his decision to walk away. And Sky Sports pundit Brundle believes that will be the last we see of Vettl in an F1 seat, as he referenced the contrast with fellow former champion Fernando Alonso’s return to the sport.

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“I remember a quite emotional interview with Fernando Alonso on the grid in Abu Dhabi 2018 as he was saying farewell, and he’s just signed a new two-year agreement taking him to at least the end of 2024,” Brundle wrote in his Sky F1 column.

“But there was more of a finality about Seb’s words and actions suggesting he won’t be back on the grid. In a German interview, he said that he would be disappointed if he did feel the need to come back because then he would likely have failed on what he plans to do next.”

Hamilton shares a close relationship with Vettel and picked up the entire bill after taking all 20 drivers out for a meal to celebrate Vettel’s career before the race weekend in Abu Dhabi.

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And the seven-time champion sharply opposes Brundle’s view, as he is even willing to ‘put his money on’ his old rival making a return after a sabbatical period. 

“We always had such great battles,” Hamilton said, whilst in Vettel’s company. “I was just sitting here thinking most drivers are coming back. You’re probably going to come back. You’ll be back. Formula 1 has a way of sucking you back in.

“I don’t think it’s ‘a goodbye show’, it’s ‘see you later’, because he’ll come back. I’m going to put my money on that he’s going to come back, just take a sabbatical, like one year, maybe two years maximum, and then come back.” 

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