Formula 1 driver Sebastian Vettel says he will step down once his heart isn’t fully in it anymore, to give younger drivers a chance.
A number of people felt he would retire from the sport after he was dropped by Ferrari last season, and even more questioned whether he would be competitive this season.
However, he ultimately decided to sign a multi-year contract with Aston Martin rather than leave the sport.
Sebastian Vettel will know when to go
However, when asked whether he would emulate Roger Federer by staying in the sport into his 40s, the German said that he didn’t want to take the place of a younger driver.
“If you compare it to other sports, there is a limited amount of seats in F1,” Vettel said.
“I think if your heart is not fully in it anymore, for whatever reason, then it is time to step aside and let other kids have their chance.
“In tennis, you can argue you’re not taking away somebody else’s spot so it is a different ball game but in racing, with only 20 seats available, potentially you are.”
Kimi Raikkonen, 41, is the oldest driver on the grid and says that he treats the sport more like a hobby these days.
Vettel says he will also compete for his own enjoyment, but his greatest motivation to keep racing is winning.
“I think we all share love to the sport otherwise we wouldn’t have gotten into this position, so that is something that unites us,” he added.
“I think then, individual motivations can be different so the nature of why you do it later on in your life career, the reasons behind it might be different.
“But I can only speak for myself. I’m really in it to win. That is where I get the ultimate buzz and that is the sort of meaning for mean.
“Irrespective of that, I still love driving so I think you don’t lose that but I have always loved the competition of it as well, the element of fighting against the others on track, trying to find out who is the better one on the day when it matters etcetera, together working with your team trying to overcome all sorts of obstacles.”