Scuderia Ferrari German driver Sebastian Vettel admitted that he is “not afraid” of competition from other drivers after being beaten by teammate Charles Leclerc at the Italian side, dismissing suggestions he struggles dealing with the challenge of strong opposition in the same team.
Since his arrival at Scuderia Ferrari in 2015 Sebastian Vettel outscored ten teammate Kimi Raikkonen every season comfortably but Charles Leclerc’s move to the Scuderia for 2019 saw the Monegasque beat the German by 24 points.
Similarities were made to the 2014 season when Daniel Ricciardo replaced Mark Webber at Aston Martin Red Bull Racing and out-performed Sebastian Vettel. But the 32-year old doesn’t feel that was the case.
“I don’t see it that way at all,” said Seb to German publication Motorsport Magazin – “I understand that people refer to 2014. I lost on paper and it’s fair to say that because the numbers say I lost to Daniel, but I also know that in 2014 some things did not go as we hoped they would. My primary goal in 2014 was not to stand on the podium or to finish fifth. My goal was to win races. Perhaps my attitude at that time was slightly different from Daniel’s, but more than that, 2014 was not a great year. I don’t want to say that I was out of luck, but I was let down a few times, the car didn’t work as it should and so on. That may distort the picture and the numbers.” – he explained.
Sebastian Vettel won in Singapore this year but struggled several times throughout the season but he still believes he has what it takes to beat anyone on the track.
“It’s important that I know how the year went and how I feel about it,” he added – “I witnessed Daniel’s success in 2014 first-hand and as his teammate. I still do that, I have no problem with that. But I’m also confident that I can beat anyone who drives out there. I’m not afraid of the competition. The contrary would make no sense. If you want to win and fear competition, these are two things that don’t go together.” – the German driver concluded.