Sebastian Vettel has announced that will be retiring at the end of the 2022 season after 15 years in the sport.
Vettel leaves F1 as one of the most successful drivers in the sports history having won four consecutive driver’s championships. He has also won 53 races during his career, with only Lewis Hamilton and Michael Schumacher having won more.
BREAKING: Sebastian Vettel has announced he will retire from F1 at the end of the 2022 season
— Formula 1 (@F1) July 28, 2022
Vettel made his debut in 2007 with a one-off outing for BMW Sauber before moving to Toro Rosso later that year. He took his and the team’s first win in 2008 at the Italian Grand Prix. His impressive performances saw him move to the Red Bull team in 2009.
He won all four of his world championships with Red Bull in a period of dominance between 2010 and 2013. His title in 2010 made him the youngest driver to win the championship. His 13 wins in 2013 saw him equal Schumacher’s record from 2004 for most wins in a season.
He left Red Bull in 2015 to join Ferrari, hoping to replicate the success that Schumacher achieved at the Italian team. Although he took 14 wins during his time with Ferrari, Vettel and the team fell short of the title despite arguably having the quicker car in 2017 and 2018.
He moved to the newly formed Aston Martin team in 2021 for a different challenge but the team’s car has been uncompetitive and has been resigned to running mid-grid. Although Aston Martin had been keen for Vettel to stay, he has decided to leave F1 and posted a video confirming the announcement.
“The decision to retire has been a difficult one for me to take, and I have spent a lot of time thinking about it,” he said.
“At the end of the year I want to take some more time to reflect on what I will focus on next; it is very clear to me that, being a father, I want to spend more time with my family.”
The 35-year-old has become a more prominent figure away from the track in recent years with his work as an activist on social and environmental issues.
His final race will be at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November, which will also be his 300th in F1.