Vettel: Ferrari must remain realistic in 2015

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Four-time F1 world champion Sebastian Vettel believes that Ferrari must remain realistic ahead of the 2015 season as the rebuilding process continues at Maranello.

Vettel confirmed in November that he would be leaving Red Bull to join Ferrari for 2015, ending a 15-year association with the drinks giant.

The German joins a very different looking team in 2015, with senior figures such as Luca di Montezemolo, Stefano Domenicali, Marco Mattiacci and Fernando Alonso all being ousted to make way for a new regime.

Today saw Ferrari launch its new car, the SF15-T, and after a disappointing season in 2014, the team is very much finding its feet again. Even with a new car design, Vettel knows that success will not come immediately upon joining the team.

“There is a lot of change going on, new people in new positions, including myself,” Vettel said. “It always takes a bit of time to settle in until you really start to make proper progress.

“I am confident we are going in the right direction but it would be wrong to immediately expect a lot. We need to remember we are coming from a 2014 season where there was one team very dominant, so it will be very difficult to arrive there from the beginning.

“For us the main target is to start to really work together, start to make progress, hopefully catch up more and more as the season progresses. You have to be realistic. There’s a lot of change that happened over the winter.”

Vettel will race alongside Kimi Raikkonen in 2015, with the two drivers being good friends and finding each other one of the few figures within F1 they can get along with.

“I don’t expect any problems,” Vettel said when asked about working with Raikkonen. “He will be a difficult teammate to beat on the track because he’s very quick and very talented, but I think off track we get on well.

“He’s always very straightforward which is something I appreciate in Kimi and doesn’t happen that often in Formula 1.”

Vettel has certainly taken a risk by moving down the grid from Red Bull to Ferrari, but he is fulfilling a prophecy that many set out for him. Just like his hero, Michael Schumacher, he is walking away from a successful team to join Ferrari and try to build a new legacy at Maranello.

Schumacher went on to win five consecutive world titles with the prancing horse, and although Vettel is racing in a very different era, he will be hoping to follow in his hero’s footsteps.

Andretti United team names drivers for inaugural Extreme E season

Extreme E drivers Andretti
Extreme E
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The Extreme E team formed by Andretti Autosport and United Autosports named Catie Munnings and Timmy Hansen as its drivers Monday for the series’ inaugural 2021 season.

Munnings is a successful veteran of rally series. Hansen is a past winner and champion in the World Rallycross Championship.

They both will race in the environmentally conscious electric SUV series that will hold events in five areas around the world that are threatened by climate change. Chip Ganassi Racing and six-time Formula One champion Lewis Hamilton also are fielding cars in Extreme E, which will feature male and female co-drivers on every team.

Catie Munnings

“I’m so excited to join Andretti United Extreme E,” Munnings said in a release. ““I was really intrigued when I first heard about Extreme E, I just knew I had to be involved. The male / female racing partnership is a fantastic and exciting new concept. The season has incredible locations and the racing will be very exciting. It will be a new challenge for the teams and drivers, and I’m so thrilled to be working with such a strong team.

“The championship is a really innovative concept, it’s combining motorsport and science and will produce an important legacy in each race location. Bringing the platform that motorsport has in line with the awareness that the planet needs right now is awesome and a really important message.”

Timmy Hansen

Said Hansen: “Going into the Extreme E will be a new chapter in my career, one that I am extremely excited about. It is something brand new, not only for me, but the whole of motorsport. The format is something

we’ve never seen before. I’m also delighted to be able to carry the message of something bigger – talking about the environment and doing something good for the world – that’s something that really drives me. It’s going to be a big adventure in life to see these locations and I’m going to do my best in carrying this responsibility and hopefully making people aware of the challenges we have in the world, together with our passion for racing.”