David Coulthard has suggested a “left-field” career option for Sebastian Vettel next season could come in the shape of the Aston Martin Formula 1 team. 

The former Williams, McLaren and Red Bull driver racked up 13 victories and finished runner-up in the 2001 world championship across his 14-year F1 career.

Vettel will leave Ferrari once his contract expires at the end of the 2020 season but his future remains uncertain having not yet secured a seat on the 2021 F1 grid. 

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The four-time world champion has been linked with the sole-remaining seat at Renault and a seemingly unlikely switch to Mercedes to partner Lewis Hamilton, but Coulthard believes a move to Racing Point - which will transform into the Aston Martin works squad next year - could be Vettel’s best option. 

Asked whether a move to Aston Martin was a realistic prospect for Vettel on the latest episode of the F1 Nation Podcast, Coulthard replied: “I used to take the view that if you could imagine it in F1 it was possible.

“There’s so many interesting things that will come into play [for Vettel], and one of them could well be Lawrence Stroll has big designs of future success for Aston Martin,” he added. 

“At this stage of his career, he could well be a brilliant asset to a team like that in terms of knowledge and experience of Red Bull, knowledge and experience of Ferrari.

“[Just] like I had my four years with Red Bull before eventually hanging up the Nomex.”

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Sergio Perez is contracted to Racing Point until the end of the 2022 season, while Lance Stroll is expected to remain at the team his father Lawrence owns, though it has not formally confirmed its line-up for next season. 

Coulthard continued: “It doesn’t matter what you’ve achieved in the past, the respect is there for Sebastian, he’s been a great asset to F1, [he has an] unbelievable turn of speed and is still somebody who is capable of winning races and championships.”

“The negotiating wheel has gone against him for whatever reason, now if that was about status and money and he wants to race then he’s made a mistake.

“He now only has Mercedes as a reasonably safe bet of performance before getting into the unknown of Renault or does he go to Aston Martin, take a shareholding, and take another phase of his career, which could be an option, a bit left-field.”