Sebastian Vettel wonders why F1 races in countries in conflict

Things are not going well for Sebastian Vettel. The last weekend was catastrophic for him, in Melbourne, where he had problems every day and ended up abandoning the race. It was his presentation in the season, since in the first two engagements he was absent, affected by covid-19. The second date of the world championship, in Saudi Arabia, the German pilot saw it on TV from his home. It was the weekend that the attack on an oil installation took place near the circuit where the first Formula 1 test session took place.

The incident, which is part of conflict that the Arabs have had with Yemeni groups for several yearstook place in a factory of Aramco, an oil company which, in addition to being a partner of Formula 1, is main sponsor of the Vettel team, Aston Martin. It’s crucial for a man who has always had strong convictions and somehow behaved like some kind of activist in an egocentric universethat moves millions and full of individualism.

“Soon, I do not think that [siga siendo] justifiable to go to certain places or certain countries. I want to say, we are not going to Russia this year and everyone understands why. Saudi Arabia has been in conflict with Yemen since 2015, yet we made the decisionF1 made the decision to go there,” he said bluntly.

Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Aston Martin F1 Team walk to the grid before the F1 Turkish Grand Prix at Intercity Istanbul Park on October 10, 2021 in Istanbul, Turkey.  (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Aston Martin F1 Team walk to the grid before the F1 Turkish Grand Prix at Intercity Istanbul Park on October 10, 2021 in Istanbul, Turkey. (Photo by Mark Thompson/Getty Images)

At that time, the possibility of a joint decision by the drivers not to perform the Grand Prix, but ultimately decided to run, even with the risks that entailed. “Personally, I can’t say what my reaction would have been. On the one hand, [había] a very clear voice saying that I would not drive. On the other hand, as I have already said, he was not there”, explained the German, who nevertheless wanted to judge his teammates. And it went further: “it’s raining a lot of money. I believe that, for the future, we must ask ourselves, especially after what happened, which is a terrible example: how far should we go? What is justifiable? It doesn’t matter how much money you make.”

Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Aston Martin F1 Team kneel on the grid in the We Race As One gesture ahead of the F1 Hungarian Grand Prix at Hungaroring on August 01, 2021 in Budapest, Hungary.  (Photo by Florion Goga-Pool/Getty Images)

Sebastian Vettel of Germany and Aston Martin F1 Team kneel on the grid as part of the We Race As One gesture ahead of the F1 Hungarian Grand Prix at the Hungaroring on August 01, 2021 in Budapest, Hungary. (Photo by Florion Goga-Pool/Getty Images)

Vettel, who says it cost him more than necessary to return after covid, was one of those who spoke out for the invasion of Ukraine at the time, when he announced that under no circumstances would he race in Russia while the conflict is ongoing. pass. “I woke up surprised. It’s horrible to see what’s going on. For my part, my opinion is that you should not go there. I will not go“, he said then. Now the 34-year-old German continued in this vein: “I can’t even imagine what’s going on there. Whenever you think it can’t get any worse, there is new scary news. Innocent people are dying. They kill women and children. It’s awful”.

Sebastian Vettel stayed picking up rubbish in the Silverstone pits

Sebastian Vettel stayed to pick up rubbish from the Silverstone pits

The German pilot, quadruple world champion, always holds a speech that many qualify as activism, even if it is only about questioning certain aspects of the company which often come up against the conscience of taking care of the planet. For example, last year he warned that F1’s policy on greener engines and sustainable fuels was not as aggressive as it should be. “I think we live in a time where we have innovations and opportunities for make Formula 1 green too, and lose nothing of the show, the emotion, the speed, the challenge, the passion. We have so many smart people and engineering power that we could find solutions. The current regulations are very exciting, the engine is super efficient, but they are useless.” he claimed. He added: “I feel like these changes are coming, it’s a good thing for Formula 1, and it’s also a vital thing. But if they don’t come, I think Formula 1 will disappear. And probably rightly so. We’re at a stage where we know we’ve made mistakes and we don’t have time to keep making them.”

Last year, at Silverstone, after a race to forget – he left following mechanical problems in the Aston Martin – Vettel made an exemplary gesture: he stayed to remove the rubbish that had been left in the stands. As soon as he can, the German collaborate with team personnel to dismantle the box after the big prizes. And he does it beyond his race result, because he is very attached to ecology Yes cares about climate change.

Aston Martin’s situation is very complicated. The team is located in the last place overall in Formula 1 and it’s the only team that hasn’t scored yet. Sebastian Vettel missed the first two races (Bahrain and Saudi Arabia) and in Australia it went very badly: he had two accidents and received a ticket for going out on the track with a scooter.

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