Sebastian Vettel: Four-time F1 world champion ‘speaking to’ Mercedes boss Toto Wolff amid thoughts of return to grid | F1 News

Sebastian Vettel admitted he is thinking about returning to Formula 1 during an exclusive interview with Sky Sports News; watch every session of the Japanese GP on Sky Sports F1 and Sky Sports Main Event with the race at 6am on Sunday

Sebastian Vettel says he is considering a return to Formula 1 amid ongoing discussions with Mercedes boss Toto Wolff and other team principals in the sport.

The four-time world champion retired in 2022 after 16 seasons in F1 but has been linked to a possible comeback.

Mercedes has a seat to fill for 2025 following Lewis Hamilton’s move to Ferrari, and Red Bull, Vettel’s former team, could also have an opening with Sergio Perez’s contract ending.

When asked about a potential 2025 seat, Vettel told Sky Sports News: “Well, potentially I am because I haven’t got a drive, but the question is, am I looking for one? I think it depends on the package.

“I retired from Formula 1 not to come back, but I also did say that you never know. So I think it still stands.

“Obviously, there are things that I miss, which is mostly the competition. And things that I don’t miss, so that hasn’t changed. Obviously, life is very different if you’re not involved and I do enjoy that still.

“You never know where life is taking you, so maybe it takes me back behind the wheel, maybe it doesn’t.”

Sky Sports F1’s Ted Kravitz looked back on Sebastian Vettel’s career ahead of his retirement in 2022.

Confirming to Sky News that he has been in talks with Mercedes’ Toto Wolff, Vettel was asked if he could resist an offer from the Silver Arrows.

He replied: “I’ve had conversations with him (Wolff), not really about the seat. We did speak about the whole situation briefly as well.

“But I did speak to others as well because I’m still keeping in touch every now and then. I have some projects and ideas together with F1. We’ll see if they will turn out or not.

“So I am staying in touch. I don’t know. It has to be a couple more phone calls and conversations, I guess, to really find out a little bit more. But for sure it’s one of the best seats on the grid.

“Performance-wise, Mercedes has a great track record, despite some struggles in the last few years, but even when struggling, they still achieve second and third in the constructors’ championship, so it’s not like they’re racing in isolation.”

Vettel tempted by Le Mans opportunity

If Vettel were to return to F1, he would currently be the third-oldest driver on the grid, following the 39-year-old Hamilton and 42-year-old Fernando Alonso.

When asked what he has missed since retiring, Vettel added: “The thrill, the speed. I think the competition mostly, really.

Four-time Formula 1 world champion Sebastian Vettel returned to track action as he tested the Porsche 963 hypercar that will feature in 24 Hours of Le Mans later this year.

“Driving quickly is not the only thing, but it’s really the competition.”

Vettel recently tested the Porsche hypercar for this year’s 24 Hours of Le Mans in June.

He mentioned that there is a possibility he could debut in the famous race.

“Maybe, I don’t know yet,” Vettel stated.

Sebastian Vettel celebrated the end of his Formula 1 career with some post-race donuts in Abu Dhabi, while the top three in the championship also joined in with the fun!

“I’ve been testing. I was curious, so I wanted to see how it feels. It’s obviously a different discipline. It’s still racing, but it’s a different car, different discipline.

“Lots of things that excite me, lots of different things, not necessarily just looking at something behind the wheel but also outside the car.

“I am (tempted) and I’m not. I am obviously also looking for lots of other things and there’s lots of other things that do interest me outside of racing.”

‘Hamilton Ferrari switch surprising but exciting’

Having shared intense world championship battles earlier in their careers, Vettel and Hamilton had developed a strong relationship by the time the former retired.

With Hamilton set to follow in Vettel’s footsteps by driving at Ferrari, Vettel admitted he was “surprised” by the switch.

“I was surprised, like I guess most of us,” Vettel said.

Sky F1’s Ted Kravitz reveals the story behind Lewis Hamilton’s shock decision to join Ferrari in 2025, and the potential impact across the paddock.

“But exciting. Obviously, he’s looking for a new challenge and it will be different to see him in red, in a different color.”

The final two seasons of Vettel’s time at Ferrari saw him drive alongside Charles Leclerc, who remains with the team and will be Hamilton’s teammate next year.

Vettel believes the pair will get along, but warns that Ferrari boss Frederic Vasseur will face a challenge in managing their competitiveness.

“Charles is good, Charles is easy,” Vettel said. “He’s very quick, very competitive but so is Lewis.

“So it’s more difficult I guess for the team to manage.”

Sky Sports F1’s live Japanese GP schedule

Thursday April 4
4.30am: Drivers’ press conference

Friday April 5
3am: Japanese GP Practice One (session starts at 3.30am)*
6.45am: Japanese GP Practice Two (session starts at 7am)*

8.15am: The F1 Show*
10am: Japanese GP Practice One replay
11.30am: Japanese GP Practice Two replay

Look back on some of the most exciting title deciders to take place at the Japanese Grand Prix.

Saturday April 6
3.15am: Japanese GP Practice Three (session starts at 3.30am)*
6am: Japanese GP Qualifying build-up*
7am: Japanese GP Qualifying*
9am: Ted’s Qualifying Notebook*
9.30am: Japanese GP Qualifying replay

Sunday April 7
5am: Grand Prix Sunday Japanese GP build-up*
8am: Chequered Flag: Japanese GP reaction*
9am: Ted’s Notebook*
9.30am: Japanese Grand Prix highlights*
10.30am: Japanese Grand Prix replay

*also live on Sky Sports Main Event

Formula 1’s biggest ever season continues with the Japanese Grand Prix, live on Sky Sports F1 this weekend. Stream every F1 race and more with a NOW Sports Month Membership – No contract, cancel anytime

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