Sebastian Vettel Teases Potential F1 Comeback Amid Audi Rumors

Although the German driver won 14 Grands Prix with Ferrari, he did not achieve his ultimate goal of winning the championship.

Sebastian Vettel has not definitively ruled out a return to Formula 1. The four-time world champion retired at the end of 2022, but rumors of a comeback have persisted in recent months.

Vettel began his career with Toro Rosso in 2008 before moving to Red Bull, where he became the third driver in F1 history (after Juan Manuel Fangio and Michael Schumacher) to win four consecutive titles. In 2015, he fulfilled a lifelong dream by joining Ferrari.

Although the German driver won 14 Grands Prix with Ferrari, he did not achieve his ultimate goal of winning the championship.

His best chance came in 2018, but a series of high-profile mistakes proved costly.

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Ferrari decided to part ways with Vettel at the end of the 2020 season, replacing him with Carlos Sainz. Vettel then joined Aston Martin for the final two years of his career.

Recently, Vettel’s name has resurfaced in the driver market, with tentative links to the vacancy left by Lewis Hamilton at Mercedes.

Vettel believes he is still in good physical condition to race in F1. He recently tested a Porsche hypercar and drove Ayrton Senna’s 1993 McLaren at Imola.

According to, Vettel is more interested in joining Audi rather than Mercedes.

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Audi will enter F1 in the 2026 season, taking over Sauber, and they have already signed Nico Hulkenberg, an experienced German driver.

While Vettel stands out as a ‘wildcard’ option, a move seems ‘increasingly unlikely’ compared to stronger contenders like Sainz, Yuki Tsunoda, and Alpine duo Pierre Gasly and Esteban Ocon.

Both Sky Sports F1 commentator David Croft and former Aston Martin colleague Bernie Collins have expressed doubts about the 36-year-old’s return to F1, suggesting he was past his prime by the time he retired.

During the early 2010s, Vettel dominated the sport, similar to Max Verstappen’s recent success. He won the 2011 and 2013 titles with record-equalling nine consecutive victories to close out the latter campaign.

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His 2010 and 2012 title wins were hard-fought, denying Ferrari’s Fernando Alonso at the final race each time.

Former Ferrari strategist Ruth Buscombe recalls that the team ‘hated’ Vettel during his peak because he was ‘too good’. His dominance led to frustration within the team.

Given it has been over a decade since Vettel was at his peak, teams like Audi might see signing him as too risky despite the publicity it would generate.