July 23, 2024

Four-time world champion Sebastian Vettel has hinted he could be tempted to make a Formula One comeback after revealing he has been talking to the boss of a major team.

Mercedes are searching for a new driver for 2025 and beyond after Lewis Hamilton announced in February he was quitting for Ferrari after 11 years with the Silver Arrows.

Vettel, who won his four drivers’ titles with Red Bull between 2010 and 2013, left F1 at the end of the 2022 campaign after six years at Ferrari and two with Aston Martin.

Now, though, the 36-year-old has suggested he could return to the sport after speaking to a number of team bosses up and down the paddock.

‘I am speaking to Toto. I don’t know if that qualifies as Mercedes, but about other things,’ the German told Sky Sports News.

‘I’m talking to a lot of people because I know them, but not very specific. I mean obviously it does cross my mind, I do think about it, but it’s not the main thought.

‘I have three kids at home, it’s busy every day, so there’s a lot of other thoughts I have. There’s ideas that I have.

‘Events that I’m planning going forwards, so I did speak to a lot of other team principals as well, and not only about racing. There’s thoughts, but nothing concrete at the minute.’

A seat at a top team could help Vettel make a decision to return to the grid and he admits he was caught out by Hamilton’s decision to swap Mercedes for Ferrari after winning six world championships with the team.

‘I was surprised, like I guess most of us were,’ he said

Mercedes are looking for a new driver to replace Lewis Hamilton – with the Brit set to join Vettel’s old team Ferrari at the end of the season

‘But it is exciting. Obviously he’s looking for a new challenge and it will be different to see him in red, in a different colour.’

Meanwhile, Vettel has been testing a different kind of race car having spent time in the Porsche contender for the Le Mans 24 Hours.Sebastian Vettel considering Formula 1 comeback

‘Maybe, I don’t know yet,’ he replied when asked if he could make his first appearance in the famous endurance race this year.

‘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.

‘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.’

His tease about a possible return to F1 comes despite calling the organisation ‘an old fashioned business’ this week amid the Christian Horner scandal after the Red Bull boss was accused of ‘coercive behaviour’ by a female staff member, before being cleared.

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