In Brief

F1: Sebastian Vettel exhausted after Ferrari’s tough year

Brendon Hartley has ‘unfinished business’ with F1 following Toro Rosso exit

Vettel ready for a break

Ferrari driver Sebastian Vettel admits that he’s in need of a break from Formula 1 after finishing the 2018 season 88 points behind world champion Lewis Hamilton.

The German, a four-time title winner, started the campaign in fine form with victories in Australia and Bahrain, but a difficult second half of the season saw him make a number of costly mistakes.

Speaking to Sky Sports after his second-placed finish behind Hamilton at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix, Vettel said: “Looking back I haven’t been at the top of my game. I can be better than I was at times this year. I think I need some time for myself. It has been a quite difficult and exhausting year for me.

“I don’t think I ever any problems raising my hand if I made a mistake. I don’t think I need to change things upside down but certainly I can adjust and get stronger.

“Having said that though, I think we also had a lot of races where we got everything out of the car and the package and I felt that I did everything I could.”

‘Unfinished business’

Brendon Hartley’s spell at Toro Rosso ended in disappointing fashion this week with the news that he would be replaced by Alexander Albon for the 2019 season.

Despite the setback New Zealander Hartley says he is proud of his time in F1. The 29-year-old said: “I left the [Yas Marina] circuit on Sunday with my head held high. I’m very proud of my story and my journey so far but I’m left feeling I have unfinished business in F1.

“For the moment, that has been put on hold. I’ve hit speed bumps before and I am a strong believer that tough situations make you stronger. It also helps that I have a great NZ [New Zealand] support crew, friends, family and wife.

“I really do appreciate the support I have received from fans across the globe this year, I still have plenty more pages to write in my story and I will make the most of the opportunities in the next chapter.”

F2 move for Schumacher

Mick Schumacher, son of seven-time F1 title winner Michael, will compete in Formula 2 next season for Prema Racing.

The 19-year-old won the European F3 title this year and F1.com says his move to F2 is “one step closer to following his famous father Michael and Uncle Ralf onto the F1 grid”.

“I’m really looking forward to contesting my next season with Prema in FIA Formula 2 - a logical step on my sporting path in my view, because I want to further improve my technical experience and driving skills,” said Schumacher.

“For me, it was very clear to go into Formula 2 with Prema. I can’t thank the Prema family enough for what we achieved together as a team, especially this year, how we continued to develop together.”

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