Head To Head Sebastian Vettel v Charles Leclerc

F1Brits_90

Race Winner
not McLaren Ruslan I don't see why for the moment they spilt up sainz & Norris they got a quality driver pairing, who get on better than ive seen for a long time. I geninuely see it as Mercedes (if lewis wants to go Ferrari) red bull retirement.
 

Ruslan

Podium Finisher
not McLaren Ruslan I don't see why for the moment they spilt up sainz & Norris they got a quality driver pairing, who get on better than ive seen for a long time. I geninuely see it as Mercedes (if lewis wants to go Ferrari) red bull retirement.
Well, I think it is also kind of a long shot...but may be the only shot available. I mean if Vettel leaves Ferrari in 2021...he will not go to Mercedes where Hamiton is....he will not go back to Red Bull where Verstappen is.....so.....where does he go? Renault has Daniel Ricciardo as team leader. Is he going to join him again? On the other hand, McLaren is now the 4th best team on the grid and will soon have Mercedes engines. They are suddenly an attractive option if Vettel is not ready to retire.

As for the Sainz/Norris pairing, while they are having a great season, I will point out that Sainz was soundly outperformed by the now cast-off Hulkenberg when they were teammates, and Hulkenberg was outperformed by both Perez and Daniel Ricciardo when he teamed with them. So, where does that really leave Sainz in the pecking order? Would McLaren suddenly decide they needed a world champion caliber driver in 2021 if they had a competitive team?

Anyhow, this is all very speculative....but where else would Vettel go and who else needs him?
 
Well, obviously they need to treat them as equals. That is almost certain to create fireworks, but they already have fireworks (and blown tires) with how they were dealing with it. In the end, I suspect they will be forced to say goodbye to Vettel after 2020 for the sake of team peace. It is clear that he cannot team with a competitive teammate. He needs to find a team where he is clear #1 (McLaren?).
I think that last Sunday they were very unlucky, similar accidents happen all the time but in most cases there is wheel to wheel contact and nothing else. Having said that it is becoming clear that there has been a deep rooted problem in the ralationship between Ferrari and Vettel since the end of last season. I have seen some interesting articles about this subject and the beginning of the breakfdown in the Vettel.Ferrari relationship seems to lie in the refusal to renew Kimi for another year. Then another problem arose when Vettel realised that Leclerc had much better connections in high places (but Vettel stubbornly keeps on managing his own career by himself... :facepalm:). Then there was Canada where Ferrari kept a very low profile and all the furore about that mind boggling decision was started by third parties and Ferrari did nothing to defend their driver (and their car, for that matter). Finally Vettel, probably for the first time in his career, decided to behave like a team player and helped Leclerc at Spa and then at Monza, probably he was expecting something in return :facepalm: :facepalm: how naive, no top driver would ever give something in return to their team mate unless the game is over). Vettel must have felt frustrated after Monza, even if it's fair to say that he should have taken things into his own hands a bit earlier in his last qualifying lap. What happened at Sochi for me beggars belief, if Vettel had some nerve he should have pitted his car right after he was ordered to let Leclerc through (despite the fact that he passed Hamilton on his own merit with no help from Leclerc, pity that the track layout favour the car running second), Vettel took it on the chin once again adding frustration to an already strained relationship with the team. So I understand that last Sunday he was there to prove a point, my problem is that he should have addressed the issue much earlier in the season. I think that in the last part of the season Vettel has been better in terms of his racing pace than Leclerc, the point is that Leclerc is a rock mentally (and has many very powerful friends). Apparently Vettel thinks that working with a psychologist (like Leclerc has been doing since he was 13 with Dr. Ceccarelli's Formula Medicine) is somehow deameaning and that he doesn't need a (strong) manager to defend his corner but I think that he's wrong on both issues. Vettel needs to accept that he needs to address those issues. IMHO in terms of driving he's clearly ahead of Leclerc but Leclerc's mental strenght is amazing.

Having said that IMHO what happened last Sunday was doomed to happen, personally when I saw them get out of turn 3 with those lines I felt that trouble was in the air because one of the two had to "surrender" and in those circumstances it was like admitting defeat. The problem for me is that if I were Vettel I would have done the same as he did, and if I was Leclerc I would have done the same that Leclerc did. For once I am glad that the stewards didn't get involved
 
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but where else would Vettel go and who else needs him?
maybe he could go to Mercedes IF they decide that they want a German driver, other than that I don't see many openings for him in 2021 (unless he pulls in some amazing performances during the first part of next season)

Regarding Sainz you are right in pointing out that he didn't do particularly well at Renault but he was on a par with Verstappen and this season (IMHO) he's been amazing: either that McLaren is much better than it looks and Norris is nothing to write home about (and I don't think that is the case) or Sainz has been doing a sterling job
 
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Ruslan

Podium Finisher
I think that last Sunday they were very unlucky, similar accidents happen all the time but in most cases there is wheel to wheel contact and nothing else. Having said that it is becoming clear that there has been a deep rooted problem in the ralationship between Ferrari and Vettel since the end of last season. I have seen some interesting articles about this subject and the beginning of the breakfdown in the Vettel.Ferrari relationship seems to lie in the refusal to renew Kimi for another year. Then another problem arose when Vettel realised that Leclerc had much better connections in high places (but Vettel stubbornly keeps on managing his own career by himself... :facepalm:). Then there was Canada where Ferrari kept a very low profile and all the furore about that mind boggling decision was started by third parties and Ferrari did nothing to defend their driver (and their car, for that matter). Finally Vettel, probably for the first time in his career, decided to behave like a team player and helped Leclerc at Spa and then at Monza, probably he was expecting something in return :facepalm: :facepalm: how naive, no top driver would ever give something in return to their team mate unless the game is over). Vettel must have felt frustrated after Monza, even if it's fair to say that he should have taken things into his own hands a bit earlier in his last qualifying lap. What happened at Sochi for me beggars belief, if Vettel had some nerve he should have pitted his car right after he was ordered to let Leclerc through (despite the fact that he passed Hamilton on his own merit with no help from Leclerc, pity that the track layout favour the car running second), Vettel took it on the chin once again adding frustration to an already strained relationship with the team. So I understand that last Sunday he was there to prove a point, my problem is that he should have addressed the issue much earlier in the season. I think that in the last part of the season Vettel has been better in terms of his racing pace than Leclerc, the point is that Leclerc is a rock mentally (and has many very powerful friends). Apparently Vettel thinks that working with a psychologist (like Leclerc has been doing since he was 13 with Dr. Ceccarelli's Formula Medicine) is somehow deameaning and that he doesn't need a (strong) manager to defend his corner but I think that he's wrong on both issues. Vettel needs to accept that he needs to address those issues. IMHO in terms of driving he's clearly ahead of Leclerc but Leclerc's mental strenght is amazing.

Having said that IMHO what happened last Sunday was doomed to happen, personally when I saw them get out of turn 3 with those lines I felt that trouble was in the air because one of the two had to "surrender" and in those circumstances it was like admitting defeat. The problem for me is that if I were Vettel I would have done the same as he did, and if I was Leclerc I would have done the same that Leclerc did. For once I am glad that the stewards didn't get involved
Interesting post. We shall see what happens in the first half of next season. This is really the chance for Vettel to re-establish himself or for Leclerc to establish himself as the real team leader for the future. Not sure how it will come out (probably very muddled). But, in the bigger picture I have two questions I am looking to be answered in the first half of next season: 1) is Vettel really a driver of the caliber of Hamilton or Alonso? I have always assumed he was, but he keeps creating doubts every time he faces a competitive teammate; and 2) is Leclerc really a team leader (meaning a driver the caliber of a Hamilton or Alonso)? I know this is a lot of "Leclerc fever" on this board, but I still wonder how good he really is, especially in light of Vettel's very inconsistent performances this year.
 

Ruslan

Podium Finisher
maybe he could go to Mercedes IF they decide that they want a German driver, other than that I don't see many openings for him in 2021 (unless he pulls in some amazing performances during the first part of next season)

Regarding Sainz you are right in pointing out that he didn't do particularly well at Renault but he was on a par with Verstappen and this season (IMHO) he's been amazing: either that McLaren is much better than it looks and Norris is nothing to write home about (and I don't think that is the case) or Sainz has been doing a sterling job
Well, the only reason I am focusing on McLaren is there is really no other place to go (not Mercedes/Hamilton, not Red Bull/Verstappen, not Renault/Ricciardo/Ocon). He is certainly not going to go to Sauber or any of the other lesser teams. So either 1) McLaren, 2) stay at Ferrari (which will certainly involve even more fireworks), or 3) retire from F1. Again, first half of next season is critical. He will either establish himself as the top driver there (and can stay) or he will not (and then it gets interesting).
 

Dartman

Podium Finisher
I never reckoned that either Vettel or Alonso were that great Vettell struggled against Webber, especially Monaco which is drivers circuit, he walked away from RB as Riciardio was out performing him and he has done nothing at Ferrari except getting shown up by an inexperienced one season team mate, similarly Alonso was shown up by an inexperienced team mate, he had only one two WDC's in the same car make, again similar to Vettel who was one make WDC. Neither did well against their future team mates without team orders or being the chosen one in the team, Alonso may have out qualified Button at McLaren but hardly overwhelming considering how crap both the chassis and engine was, he also probably destroyed any chance of McLaren and Honda getting it right with his petulant behaviour. Alonso was his greatest self propaganda PR machine, probably learnt from Briatore and Vettel thinks he's Schumacher's second coming
 

F1Brits_90

Race Winner
I think that last Sunday they were very unlucky, similar accidents happen all the time but in most cases there is wheel to wheel contact and nothing else. Having said that it is becoming clear that there has been a deep rooted problem in the ralationship between Ferrari and Vettel since the end of last season. I have seen some interesting articles about this subject and the beginning of the breakfdown in the Vettel.Ferrari relationship seems to lie in the refusal to renew Kimi for another year. Then another problem arose when Vettel realised that Leclerc had much better connections in high places (but Vettel stubbornly keeps on managing his own career by himself... :facepalm:). Then there was Canada where Ferrari kept a very low profile and all the furore about that mind boggling decision was started by third parties and Ferrari did nothing to defend their driver (and their car, for that matter). Finally Vettel, probably for the first time in his career, decided to behave like a team player and helped Leclerc at Spa and then at Monza, probably he was expecting something in return :facepalm: :facepalm: how naive, no top driver would ever give something in return to their team mate unless the game is over). Vettel must have felt frustrated after Monza, even if it's fair to say that he should have taken things into his own hands a bit earlier in his last qualifying lap. What happened at Sochi for me beggars belief, if Vettel had some nerve he should have pitted his car right after he was ordered to let Leclerc through (despite the fact that he passed Hamilton on his own merit with no help from Leclerc, pity that the track layout favour the car running second), Vettel took it on the chin once again adding frustration to an already strained relationship with the team. So I understand that last Sunday he was there to prove a point, my problem is that he should have addressed the issue much earlier in the season. I think that in the last part of the season Vettel has been better in terms of his racing pace than Leclerc, the point is that Leclerc is a rock mentally (and has many very powerful friends). Apparently Vettel thinks that working with a psychologist (like Leclerc has been doing since he was 13 with Dr. Ceccarelli's Formula Medicine) is somehow deameaning and that he doesn't need a (strong) manager to defend his corner but I think that he's wrong on both issues. Vettel needs to accept that he needs to address those issues. IMHO in terms of driving he's clearly ahead of Leclerc but Leclerc's mental strenght is amazing.

Having said that IMHO what happened last Sunday was doomed to happen, personally when I saw them get out of turn 3 with those lines I felt that trouble was in the air because one of the two had to "surrender" and in those circumstances it was like admitting defeat. The problem for me is that if I were Vettel I would have done the same as he did, and if I was Leclerc I would have done the same that Leclerc did. For once I am glad that the stewards didn't get involved
great reading, & I agree with the last paragraph that it is psychological war as palmer said that neither could give up without having a pressure on them. abit like Hamilton v Rosberg in 2016. but I find it interesting that he didn't want Leclerc & wanted Kimi which was thinking of himself not the team, because everyone knew Leclerc on pace was the correct decision. but vettel knew he could beat raikkonen because the mentality is different to lewis & M Schumacher who publicly is motivated by the challenge of beating the next generation Leclerc & Verstappen
 
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Il_leone

Champion Elect
Leclerc in an interview said it was Vettel's fault but maybe he could have done more to avoid it .

As for the stewards not ascribing fault to anyone in interteam collisions I have not seen when the stewards think its one driver's fault over the other . It did not happen with Vettel/ Webber 2010, Button/Hamilton 2011, Hamilton/Rosberg -2014 or Ricciardo/Verstappen-2018.

It would be seen as some sort of conspiracy. The only one that came closest was Senna/ Prost -1989. Prost was not willing to budge Senna's pass down the inside and it was Senna was who disqualified for chicane cutting and the involvement of Balestre/Prost vs Senna/Mclaren. Prost in his disbelief the team was against him and made his comment" His worst season in F1"

Back to Ferrari.. yet another mess up yesterday with quali which Vettel could have sneaked ahead of Leclerc -maybe payback for Monza although Binotto tries to play a team stance to the press

The other interesting point Binotto let it open for the first time that Ferrari would consider Hamilton so one of these drivers will probably not be with Ferrari for 2021. You can make your mind up who it won't be
 

Ruslan

Podium Finisher
Leclerc in an interview said it was Vettel's fault but maybe he could have done more to avoid it .
Leclerc has remained extremely correct and diplomatic throughout this. I might have lost it by now.

He does impress, and not only as a driver.

The other interesting point Binotto let it open for the first time that Ferrari would consider Hamilton so one of these drivers will probably not be with Ferrari for 2021. You can make your mind up who it won't be
I am not sure I would read too much into all this. They all need leverage for the financial negotiations in 2021. Hamilton needs leverage with Mercedes, so talking to Ferrari gives him this. Binotto needs leverage is his negotiations with Vettel, so talking up Hamilton gives him this. Leclerc is already under a multi-year contract. I do note that Vettel has already mentioned discussions with Red Bull. More leverage. So at this point they are all playing a game, all looking towards negotiations for 2021. Playing it right can earn or save someone millions or more. Certainly enough for some of these guys to seriously consider what little words they are going to drop to the press. So this will be going on for a while.

Now, I did start of 2021 silly season thread. My suspicion is that when push comes to shove...we shall see Verstappen remaining at Red Bull, Hamilton remaining at Mercedes and Leclerc is already contracted. In that scenario, where does Vettel go? It really depends on how the first half of next season goes. If it goes well, then he may negotiate to stay. If Verstappen and Hamilton are staying put, then staying is his best option. If it does not go well, and Verstappen and Hamilton are staying put.....well, then the options get a little weird.

In that last scenario, then I think there are only four real options for Vettel: 1) stay at Ferrari as the number 1 1/2 driver (not really a number 1 but not officially a number, 2) return to Red Bull to team with Verstappen, 3) Retire or race outside of F1, 4) go to McLaren (which has yet to be rumored but I mention because it seems like the only other logical option). Now, option 1 and 2 don't really sound like a situation Vettel will be happy with, but he may do it because option 3 and 4 are not that attractive.

Added to that.....Alonso may be floating around in 2021 looking for a drive. He won't be going to Mercedes, Red Bull or Ferrari, as he also "does not play well with others" as they say in elementary school. A return to McLaren? Bump Sainz?

Anyhow, I am going to also repost this response in the 2021 Silly Season thread.
 
I think there are only four real options for Vettel: 1) stay at Ferrari as the number 1 1/2 driver (not really a number 1 but not officially a number, 2) return to Red Bull to team with Verstappen, 3) Retire or race outside of F1, 4) go to McLaren (which has yet to be rumored but I mention because it seems like the only other logical option). Now, option 1 and 2 don't really sound like a situation Vettel will be happy with, but he may do it because option 3 and 4 are not that attractive.
I would add as option #5 a swap between Hamilton and Vettel, Hamilton to Ferrari and Vettel to Mercedes
 

Dartman

Podium Finisher
Not sure that's an option, Mercedes may would like a top German driver in the team but on present form is Vettel that driver, why swap a proven driver with an at the moment intermittent driver? However things can change in a year, both may be unavailable for various reasons, or even the teams may also be unavailable in 2021.
 

Ruslan

Podium Finisher
I would add as option #5 a swap between Hamilton and Vettel, Hamilton to Ferrari and Vettel to Mercedes
I don't rate that as very likely, but in F1....stranger things have happened. There are two problems with it:

1. Will Hamilton want to go to Ferrari and compete with Leclerc who will be established for two years there? Not much to gain...but a lot to lose. As someone said, Hamilton does not speak Italian.

2. Vettel would probably only be leaving Ferrari if he does not perform in 2020. Will Mercedes then want to pick up as their team leader someone who has underperformed for the last two years?

2021 silly season is going to be interesting.
 
I don't rate that as very likely, but in F1....stranger things have happened. There are two problems with it:

1. Will Hamilton want to go to Ferrari and compete with Leclerc who will be established for two years there? Not much to gain...but a lot to lose. As someone said, Hamilton does not speak Italian.

2. Vettel would probably only be leaving Ferrari if he does not perform in 2020. Will Mercedes then want to pick up as their team leader someone who has underperformed for the last two years?

2021 silly season is going to be interesting.
Intersting points

1 - in terms of pure driving I think that Hamilton has the edge over Leclerc (as IMHO does Vettel), I would assume that if Hamilton agreed to join Ferrari he would want to be sure that he's #1

2 - it seems that many people rate Vettel as a very fast driver who needs to be loved and cocooned by its team to perform. That isn't happening at Ferrari, I think that life would be much easier for him at Mercedes. Ferrari lets his drivers race each other whereas Mercedes doesn't, Ferrari has signed a contract with a driver establishing him as #1 but during the season they forgot about that and backed their supposed #2 driver. I think that Ferrari, after the Schumacher years, isn't ready to have a clear #1 driver and a wingman, Mercedes doesn't seem to be too bothered about that. Also with the cars that Mercedes produced over the last few years even Stroll could have become WDC. IMHO at Mercedes Vettel could concentrate only on his driving and he would make less mistakes. Vettel's weakness compared to Leclerc is his ability to withstand pressure. Also I guess that Mercedes is a less political and much simpler environment that Ferrari, that would be good for a driver who (despite all the issues that he had to face) still doesn't want a manager to fight his corner. Finally Mercedes could easily hire him on a low retainer and pay him based on his performance (and if he wìdoesn't perform they could still easily win the WDC with their other driver, whoever that is)
 

Ruslan

Podium Finisher
I would assume that if Hamilton agreed to join Ferrari he would want to be sure that he's #1
If Leclerc has the edge over Vettel in 2020, which I think is what will create the conditions for Vettel to leave.....then why would Leclerc agree to be a #2 after beating a 4-time world champ two seasons in a row? Hard to have a #1 and #2 if the #2 does not agree. Hamilton to Ferrari doesn't seem to work because it looks like Leclerc is good enough.

2 - it seems that many people rate Vettel as a very fast driver who needs to be loved and cocooned by its team to perform. That isn't happening at Ferrari, I think that life would be much easier for him at Mercedes.
I am not sure that Mercedes is all that loving and cocooning.

Ferrari has signed a contract with a driver establishing him as #1 but during the season they forgot about that and backed their supposed #2 driver.
Well, #1 and #2 doesn't really affect qualifying performance. If the #2 driver is outqualifying the #1 driver, then that kind of undermines any such arrangement. Leclerc was showing more speed than Vettel. Schumacher was never regularly outqualified by his many teammates.

Finally Mercedes could easily hire him on a low retainer and pay him based on his performance (and if he wìdoesn't perform they could still easily win the WDC with their other driver, whoever that is)
That is not guaranteed. The #2 driver at Mercedes placed 3rd in 2017 (behind Vettel) and 5th in 2018 (behind Vettel, Raikkonen and Verstappen).

I don't think there is much chance that Vettel will go to Mercedes regardless. But, it does open up the question, if Hamilton does get drawn into driving for Ferrari (which could happen)....then who does Mercedes get (assuming Verstappen is locked in at Red Bull)?
 
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FB

Not my cup of cake
Valued Member
Not the same "passion" in this thread as there was in the Hamilton/Button one is there?
 
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