Felipe Massa – who drove for the team from 2006 until 2013 alongside Michael Schumacher, Kimi Raikkonen and Fernando Alonso – said that Sebastian’s moment is over.
Massa himself never won the world championship, but memorably came within a whisker in 2008 only to be pipped at the last second by Lewis Hamilton.
The 39-year-old – who subsequently drove for Williams after leaving Ferrari, before moving on to Brazilian Stock Cars and most recently Formula E – said that Hamilton’s success had been thoroughly earned.
Four-time world champion Vettel has been with the team since 2015, and was runner-up in the drivers standings in 2017 and 2018.
But a poor season last year resulted in team principal Mattia Binotto deciding not to extend Vettel’s tenure even before the delayed start to the 2020 campaign.
Felipe Massa thinks that Sebastian Vettel hasn’t performed well enough in 2020, and says his former team is right to get rid of the German.
This season has been Ferrari’s worst in a long time with the team currently P6 in the Constructors’ Championship and rarely in the mix for podiums, let alone wins.
Speaking to AS, Massa, who drove for the team from 2006 to 2013, says that things were never so bad during his time there, and finds it sad to see.
“It is a very difficult moment for Ferrari. It is sad to see them like this, with all the problems they are having this year,” he said.
“Ferrari is a team that has an obligation to be competitive and when it is not, it is a very serious thing, not only for the fans but also for the people who work within the team.
“I have also had difficult years, in which the car was not competitive, but not like this year. I hope that the Ferrari situation will change soon, not for now, but for the next few years. It must be recognised that it is a very serious problem.”
Vettel, in particular, has had a poor year. He currently trails Charles Leclerc by 64 points and has, more often than not, been some way off his team-mate throughout race weekends.
Given this, Massa thinks that Ferrari has made the right call in dropping him and signing Carlos Sainz for the 2021 campaign, adding that he thinks the Spaniard can push Leclerc.
“The car is the most important thing. Without a competitive car, you cannot win and that does not depend on the drivers,” the Brazilian added.
“On the other hand, I think Sebastian’s moment is over, because he is not doing the job that one expects from a four-time World Champion and I think the team should make a change.
“It is not the best moment for Sebastian, he thinks that he is not being treated well and for the team, it is not good to have a driver in this situation, without being competitive. I think his departure was the best solution for both of them.
“I think that Sainz will be competitive. He already showed his speed when he debuted in Formula 1, but especially in the last two years, getting good results with McLaren and I think he can work well.
“Charles is in a great moment, it will not be easy for Sainz, but he can do a great job and be strong with Ferrari.”
FORMER FERRARI DRIVER FELIPE MASSA SAYS SEBASTIAN’S MOMENT IS OVER FORMER FERRARI DRIVER FELIPE MASSA SAYS SEBASTIAN’S MOMENT IS OVER
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F1 2020 NEXT RACE
|12:00 - 13:30||Free practice 1|
|16:00 - 17:30||Free practice 2|
|12:00 - 13:00||Free practice 3|
|15:10 - 17:10||Race|