Mike Krack believes that Sebastian Vettel especially needs to understand the future plans and prospects of the team.
Arrived this year at the head of Aston Martin F1, Mike Krack talks about what his team must achieve to convince Sebastian Vettel to continue his adventure in green team.
New Team Principal for the Aston Martin F1 team, Mike Krack gives his view on the team’s star driver Sebastian Vettel, what the team needs to do to keep him for another year and how his relationship with the four-time world champion dates way back.
Having worked in BMW Sauber F1 during Vettel’s first years in F1, Krack is no stranger to the German and getting the best out of him in a race team.
Speaking in a media session with selected media outlets – including MotorLAT – Krack explained how it is up the team to deliver a good car and future potential in order to keep Vettel at the team for longer – his contract expires at the end of the 2022 season:
“It’s clear that Sebastian (Vettel), four-time world champion, he doesn’t want to be 15th or 12th or P8, that’s clear. It is our task to deliver a performing car, and if we manage that performing structure – Sebastian is a clever guy, he will not be focusing just on this year’s car or whatever, but focusing more on what’s happening and if he sees the potential. So, if we can manage to offer this to him, I think we have a chance to keep him for longer.
“I have not spoken with him about it, this is something that will have to come obviously. All in all, it is our task to deliver the right package, then Sebastian will stay and other drivers would like to join.”
Another point of consideration is the team working environment, something which is very important for Vettel historically, and more recently after his departure from Ferrari in 2020. Krack is well aware that he needs to treat drivers differently, and is relying on his previous experiences to help his drivers feel comfortable and trusted in the team, allowing them to perform at their best:
“I think it is super important. It doesn’t have to be always the ‘island of comfort’ for everyone, but I think it’s very important for such high-class drivers that they feel the support of the team. What matters here most is being transparent – about what we expect, where we are. This is something I handled with all the drivers that I had in the past.
“In my former employee, we had more drivers – because we had more projects, you need more drivers – so it’s quite crucial that you have them all embarked with what you want to achieve, so that there is no one left over. We need to spend time on this subject, with both reserve drivers and all the drivers that you have, in the whole system.
“It’s a matter of being honest and transparent, at the end of the day. So far, it has always worked quite easily, if you treat them the way it is necessary – and that doesn’t mean that you have to call them every day, but you have to put an ecosystem in place, where they can feel trusted and confident.”
Sebastian Vettel is entering his 15th full Formula One season in 2022 – Image by Hasan BraticSebastian Vettel is entering his 15th full Formula One season in 2022 – Image by Hasan Bratic
Memories from their days together in BMW are still fresh in the minds of both driver and team boss. Krack is positive about their new chapter together, and said that even though they didn’t have much contact over the last decade, when they met again it felt very natural:
“First of all, he is a very nice guy. He manages to surround the team around him, not by being nice all the time, but by being respectful, and this is an ethic that I share largely, so that is one of reasons why we get along very well.
“Compared to when I knew him (at BMW Sauber), he is now a four-time world champion, accrued a huge amount of experience, and he’s a very clever guy. That’s also why he manages to combine his experience, channel it in the right way – not saying ‘in the past I had this, in the past I had (that)’. He knows exactly what he needs to go faster, so from that point of view, I think it’s great to have him.
“When Sebastian ran In Turkey (2006) in the third car, I was the race engineer for him. Obviously, maybe a bit of a special link between himself and myself. Actually, last week he said ‘do you remember Istanbul?’ when he ran the first time in our car (AMR22). I think we have a very good relationship.
“We haven’t been in touch over the years after I had left Formula One, but when we met again it was like we had seen ourselves yesterday. It was very, very good to catch up, now we have a lot of stories to exchange, not only about racing, but about family and kids and stuff like that. The discussions that I’m having with him are always an extending one from what we had in the past.
“We were very, very close one in the past, and I have the feeling that we have been very close now again,” the new Aston Martin F1 boss concluded.Aston Martin F1 boss concluded.
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