Aston Martin F1 owner Lawrence Stroll believes Sebastian Vettel is the right man to give his team a World Championship-winning mentality.
Stroll is making no secret of his desire to turn Aston Martin into genuine title contenders over the next few years following their rebranding from Racing Point.
A key part of that plan has been the hiring of Vettel, a four-time former World Champion himself who is ready for a new challenge after a poor final year at Ferrari in which he clearly went stale after being told before the 2020 action began that his contract would be terminated.
Rather than buying into any suggestions that the 33-year-old German might be yesterday’s man, Stroll feels he will be revitalised by his move to Aston Martin and that his involvement with the team, plus vast top-level experience and a strong work ethic, will help turn them into title challengers.
“Sebastian had a very challenging year last year,” said Stroll in an interview with the BBC to mark the official switch of Racing Point to Aston Martin.
“All of us would find it challenging that you lose your job before the season starts. That’s mentally very difficult, and you know how mental a game F1 is for drivers.
“He had a car he found tricky to drive that didn’t suit his driving style. We’ve seen that before in his last year at Red Bull [in 2014].
“But he’s a four-time World Champion. I don’t think he forgot how to drive in one year. He has a work ethic that is known as second to none in the paddock in terms of how hard he works.
“One of the ways we are going to become World Champions is to get my guys to think and act like World Champions. And how you do that is to bring a four-time World Champion into the team.
“He will take the team in a direction of leading us to where ultimately we want to be.
“I’m not concerned. I know Sebastian well and I have 100% confidence and belief he will do a fantastic job with us. He is more motivated than he has ever been.”
Vettel will also be expected to inspire his team-mate Lance Stroll, the team owner’s son who is 11 years his junior and recorded two podium finishes during 2020 as well as a brilliant pole position on a treacherously wet track in Turkey.