Four-time World Champion Sebastian Vettel made a point in his final Formula One race as he retires from the sport.
Starting the race from ninth place alongside two-time Formula One champion Fernando Alonso who said that he would look after the German at the start of the race which is what he did. Vettel commented following the race on Sunday saying:
“I enjoyed the race this evening, but it was a shame that we could not quite get past Daniel [Ricciardo] at the end. The lead-up to the race was a bit different with so many tributes and activities on the grid, but once the lights went out it was full-on race mode. It was not an easy race because it was a close call between a one-stop and two-stop strategy. On my car, we tried to make the one-stop work, but as the tyres were getting older it was quite challenging to hold on. It was nice to fight the last couple of laps with Daniel and to have us both finishing in the points, but we just missed out on moving up a place in the Constructors’ World Championship. Overall, it has been a big and emotional weekend, so thank you to everybody for all the support. Seeing so many flags and so many smiling faces has been very, very special. I am sure I am going to miss it more than I understand right now. The past two years have been great for me personally so thank you for all the support – all the messages, the letters and all the love in general. I will miss that but it has been an absolute joy throughout my career so thank you all again.”
Lance Stroll started the race in P14 and came home in eighth place and speaking following the action he commented saying:
“We had a competitive race with a good strategy today to round out the year. I am happy with the performance and the result: it was a great team effort. It was a shame not to pass Alfa Romeo in the Constructors’ World Championship at the end. We gave it everything we could as the races ticked by and we were so close to jumping them today. The team here at the track and back at Silverstone did a really good job throughout the year to help us get much more out of the car in the second half of the season. We were able to fight for points on a much more regular basis recently and that progress is a good preparation for next year.”
The Aston Martin Aramco Cognizant Formula One Team ended the season in seventh place in the Constructors championship on 55 points equal with Alfa Romeo Sauber F1 Team and speaking following the action, Team Principal Mike Krack commented saying:
“On behalf of all at Aston Martin, I want to pay tribute to Sebastian, who drove his last Formula One Grand Prix this evening. One of our sport’s all-time greats – his four World Championships and 53 Grand Prix wins attest to that – he has been a brilliant driver for us this year and last, and his excellent qualifying lap yesterday and his combative race drive to P10 today showed that he has bowed out at the peak of his form. We will miss him. As for Lance, today he drove a strong race to P8. The five points we scored here in Abu Dhabi lifted our total to 55: not quite enough to wrest sixth place in the Constructors’ World Championship from Alfa Romeo, whose points total we drew level with, because they stayed ahead of us on countback. Last but very far from least, I would like to say congratulations and thank you to all our staff – at the races and back at Silverstone – who worked incredibly hard all year. Next year we are determined to do better.”
The 2023 Formula One season is just 105 days away with the Bahrain Grand Prix which takes place from March 5-7 with Fernando Alonso joining Lance Stroll at the team next season.