Six races into the 2012 season, and the ‘silly season’ rumours are already in full swing, with no less than half a dozen drivers speculated as possible candidates to take over Felipe Massa’s seat at Ferrari next year.
We have already reported on Mark Webber’s suggested switch to the Italian team, but one other rumour doing the rounds was that Sebastian Vettel had already agreed to terms to race with Ferrari from the 2014 season onwards.
Vettel’s current contract with Red Bull Racing expires at the end of the 2014 season, but it is believed he has a ‘get out’ clause or two in the fine print that allows him to jump ship should the Milton Keynes team’s competitiveness take a serious hit.
The German has moved quickly possibly at the behest of his employers to douse the rumoured move to Ferrari, and told reporters he is perfectly happy with Red Bull Racing, with whom he has won the past two Drivers’ Championship titles.
“I’ve been wearing a Red Bull helmet for almost my entire career. It is difficult to imagine another kind of life if you are so used to it,” he told AUTOSPORT.
“It would be like when you turn 18, 19 and move out of your family’s home. I am very happy where I am right now and I don’t want to move on to anywhere else.”
In contrast to the 2011 season, when Vettel won eleven of the year’s races, the 2012 season has been blown wide open, with six different winners in the opening six races. Vettel won the Bahrain Grand Prix earlier this year from pole position.
But he won’t write off his prospects of claiming a title hat trick, believing that the team has still got work to do to unlock the inherent potential of the team’s Adrian Newey-designed RB8.
“From the first day of winter testing on I had confidence in our car. We have not got out the most of the potential though we make steadily progress. And troubles with tyres concern almost everyone, not us alone. It simply depends on who will be doing the better job [on the given weekend].”