Ferrari’s Sebastian Vettel has revealed he has held “loose talks” over an Aston Martin Formula 1 drive for the 2021 season.

Rumours began swirling this week after reports in Germany claimed Vettel is considering an offer from Racing Point owner Lawrence Stroll to drive for the team when it rebrands into the Aston Martin works squad next year.

Vettel is currently without a drive for 2021 after Ferrari decided not to renew his contract. With seats at McLaren and Renault taken, and Mercedes expected to continue with Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas, the Aston Martin project appears the four-times world champion’s best shot of landing a competitive drive.

Racing Point has insisted that its current drivers Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll are both tied down to long-term contracts, and Perez remained defiant that he has a deal to race for the team next year amid intensifying speculation that it could be the Mexican’s seat which is under threat.

Asked if it is his understanding that there is a Racing Point seat free if he wants it, Vettel replied: “At this stage, I think it’s talks.

“I said last week I have been in talks with Renault for example, it’s also talks. At a later stage with anyone I think it would become a bit more concrete.

“The truth is that there is nothing to announce and nothing more concrete than loose talks.

“I think rumours are called rumours for a reason,” he added. “Anyway, now only a couple of days after Austria, there’s not much that has changed.

“The fact is there is no news. If you ask about Racing point, everyone is talking about Racing Point, the first two races have been impressive, the performance on track.

“When it comes to myself, no news, nothing has changed in a week.”

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Vettel reiterated his stance that he is no rush to make a call on what he will do for next year and made it clear he will take the time to ensure it is the “right decision for myself”.

“I said last time it will probably take some time, most importantly for myself to make the decision, the right decision for myself,” he explained.

“Once there is something to say, I think that will be the right time in future to do so.

“Anything at this stage is still open - driving next year, not driving next year and maybe coming back or not driving and doing something different.

“I’m not pressured to make my decision too quickly.”

Asked if he believes Aston Martin is his only realistic option to stay in F1, Vettel responded: "There’s two ways to look at it.

“One is on paper, which seats there are, which there are not. For that, I have too little information about contracts, and what are peoples’ contracts and so on.

“The other thing is I have been around for long time and you never know, things can always change.

“Irrespective of that, I have to make decision myself, and see if there is something suitable in that direction.”

 

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