Formula 1 fans got shocking news on Thursday afternoon as one of the most successful drivers in the history of the sport, Sebastian Vettel announced that he will retire after the 2022 season. The four-time World Champion said that he wants to spend time with his family while explaining his decision. The German driver, who currently drives for Aston Martin in F1, will end his career as the third-most successful driver in terms of total Grand Prix win. Vettel sits third on the list behind Lewis Hamilton and Michael Schumacher with 53 wins.
“The decision to retire has been a difficult one for me to take, and I have spent a lot of time thinking about it; at the end of the year I want to take some more time to reflect on what I will focus on next; it is very clear to me that, being a father, I want to spend more time with my family,” said Vettel while announcing his retirement. “But today is not about saying goodbye. Rather, it is about saying thank you – to everyone – not least to the fans, without whose passionate support Formula 1 could not exist.”
With the 35-year-old announcing this news, fans and his mates shared their feeling. Mercedes driver Lewis Hamilton who has been a long-term rival as well as a good friend of Vettel said he feels honored to call the German his friend.
“Seb, it’s been an honour to call you a competitor and an ever greater honour to call you my friend. Leaving this sport better than you found it is always the goal. I have no doubt that whatever comes next for you will be exciting, meaningful, and rewarding. Love you, man,” tweeted Hamilton.
Seb, it’s been an honour to call you a competitor and an ever greater honour to call you my friend. Leaving this sport better than you found it is always the goal. I have no doubt that whatever comes next for you will be exciting, meaningful, and rewarding. Love you, man. pic.twitter.com/eHVmOpov2m
— Lewis Hamilton (@LewisHamilton) July 28, 2022
Mick Schumacher also reacted as he wrote “I’m so sad that you’re leaving, but at the same time excited for you and this new chapter of your life. You’ve been and still are such an important person to me and I’m thankful for our friendship.”
I’m so sad that you’re leaving, but at the same time excited for you and this new chapter of your life. You’ve been and still are such an important person to me and I’m thankful for our friendship. pic.twitter.com/1iFmlxxgyQ
— Mick Schumacher (@SchumacherMick) July 28, 2022
Other F1 stars also wished Vettel the best for his future. Check out their reactions here:
Congratulations Sebastian on amazing career and contribution you made to the sport of Racing! Good luck on new corners of your new life… pic.twitter.com/HvRsPo6obl
— Daniil Kvyat (@kvyatofficial) July 28, 2022
As Sebastian Vettel has just announced his retirement at the end of 2022, I would like to pay tribute to his fantastic career with 4 @FIA @F1 World Driver’s Championships & 53 wins. Thank you Sebastian for all that you brought to our sport! I wish you all the best for the future. pic.twitter.com/mQIU795ngV
— Mohammed Ben Sulayem (@Ben_Sulayem) July 28, 2022
Thank you for all of the memories! 💙 pic.twitter.com/Oy2UhUpBXX
— BWT Alpine F1 Team (@AlpineF1Team) July 28, 2022
Legend status. 👑 Congratulations on a remarkable career, Sebastian Vettel.
A champion on and off the track. pic.twitter.com/KU6fZABpNA
— McLaren (@McLarenF1) July 28, 2022
It’s been an honour to share so many memories with you in Formula 1. Looking forward to enjoying the last few races together in the paddock.
— Scuderia Ferrari (@ScuderiaFerrari) July 28, 2022
Danke, Seb 👏 Cheers for the great times and the four World Championships 🏆🏆🏆🏆 pic.twitter.com/Z2D2igIJg1
— Oracle Red Bull Racing (@redbullracing) July 28, 2022
We'll miss you, Seb ❤️
— Mercedes-AMG PETRONAS F1 Team (@MercedesAMGF1) July 28, 2022
THANK YOU SEB!! 🙌🏼🙌🏼
Let’s finish this season on a high with some proper racing!!
— Carlos Sainz (@Carlossainz55) July 28, 2022
Congrats Seb, on an amazing career. I’m very happy to have shared the track with you, let’s make your last races great once more 🤝 pic.twitter.com/WnKCuotv0T
— Max Verstappen (@Max33Verstappen) July 28, 2022
Enjoy your retirement Seb, you’re a true F1 legend! You’ll be missed mate. pic.twitter.com/TgWJA6i2vq
— George Russell (@GeorgeRussell63) July 28, 2022