Jota team principal Sam Hignett has confirmed reports he is in talks with Sebastian Vettel about a 2024 World Endurance Championship drive.
German publication Auto Motor und Sport recently reported that the four-time Formula 1 World Champion was contemplating a return to racing having been offered a seat with Jota.
That has now been confirmed with team boss Hignett saying the reports are true but that no deal has been signed off.
‘There are discussions, but nothing is done’
“We are speaking to Seb, there are discussions, but nothing is done,” he told Motorsport.com. “There isn’t any kind of contract signed and he certainly hasn’t tested one of our cars.
“Sustainability is important to us as a team, which is why our hospitality unit at Le Mans was solar powered. We know that is important to Seb as well.”
Jota, a British team, will next season increase its participation in the top tier of endurance racing to two Porsche 963 LMDh prototypes.
Vettel, though, is just one driver on Hignett’s list with fellow F1 World Champion Jenson Button also a candidate as is F1 race winner Robert Kubica.
“We are speaking to a lot of people, some who are high up on the list and some others who aren’t so high,” he added.
Vettel, who last year hung up his helmet citing family time and environmental causes as his reasons for quitting Formula 1, told AMuS he is considering Jota’s offer.
“Nothing has been signed or decided yet,” Vettel said. “But I have the matter in the back of my mind. I still have time to decide.
“If at some point I come to the conclusion that it doesn’t work without racing, then I will drive again.”
It begs the question would he ever consider returning to Formula 1.
He was recently asked that by Channel 4 and replied: “I’m not thinking about it too much, to be honest. That’s not a no, but how could you rule it out?”
“I mean, I can say ‘no’ now but then in a year, I’m watching the race and I’m starting to panic – might happen, I don’t know.
“Then what? You know, then I was like, ‘Oh, but a year ago, you said no [to coming back]’, so I think it’s safer to say, you never know.
“But yeah, I mean it’s a big commitment.”