'Too big to neglect': Sebastian Vettel's stunning swipe at F1

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Pictured here, Aston Martin driver Sebastian Vettel gets ready for a race in 2021.
Aston Martin driver Sebastian Vettel has taken a dig at some of the changes being implemented in F1. Pic: Getty

Veteran driver Sebastian Vettel has hit out at F1 bosses over the addition of Qatar to a schedule he already thinks puts too much strain on teams.

Qatar was last month awarded an unprecedented 10-year contract that not even the most iconic tracks like Silverstone and Monaco have been granted.

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That is despite the oil-rich nation frequently being being accused of human rights violations, particularly against a large population of migrant workers in the country.

This year the F1 calendar has already featured races in Bahrain and Hungary, with Saudi Arabia and now Qatar to feature later this year.

Next year will feature a record 23 races.

Vettel suggested that the addition of Qatar to an increasingly packed calendar is fuelled by money.

Seen here, German Sebastian Vettel prepares for a race at Monza in Italy.
German Sebastian Vettel has questioned some of the moves F1's decision-makers have brought in. Pic: Getty

"I think the trouble is that ultimately a sport, and it's the same as a country, is governed by individual people," he told Motorsport.com.

"Individual people have individual opinions, and backgrounds, whatever, so it is of course difficult.

"But we have to find the perfect people to sort of govern our sport, and then apply the right path going forward.

"There's more than just that interest, there's obviously huge financial interest in going forward."

Sebastian Vettel questions 'morals' of F1 bosses

Vettel - who has championed several social causes in 2021 such as LGBTQ rights, anti-racism and environmental concerns - questioned the morality behind some of F1's moves and said certain global issues were "too big to neglect.

Pictured here, Sebastian Vettel wears rainbow colours to support gay pride at the 2021 Hungarian GP.
Sebastian Vettel wore rainbow colours to support gay pride at the Hungarian GP in 2021. Pic: Getty

"I think at some point you need to ask the question, and people in charge need to ask themselves the question: do you have a moral?

"Do you therefore say no to certain things? Or do you just say 'yes' to any big deal that's around the corner, but for the wrong reasons?

"I think that's the bigger picture stuff that people in charge ultimately need to ask themselves.

"I think we all agree that - and this doesn't matter where you come from - it's only fair to treat people equally...

"We go to some of those places, and we roll out a huge carpet with nice messages on it. But I think it takes more than just words, I think it takes actions."

Vettel is also concerned by the record number of races scheduled for 2022, with Australia, Canada, Singapore and Japan all set to return after Covid-enforced cancellations.

Two triple-headers and seven back-to-back races highlight a jam-packed year that Vettel says places excessive demand on teams and staff.

“This is only my opinion, and it’s not worth anything, but I think we should not have that many races,” Vettel said.

“I think (for) one, maybe it’s too many races for the people to watch. It’s not special anymore if there’s that many.

“And (secondly), I feel for (the staff). Us drivers – we are at the good side of things: we can arrive on a Wednesday night and leave if we find a flight, et cetera, on a Sunday night.

“But the team already has a lot more stress. They arrived Monday or Saturday the week before, they build the garage, prepare the cars and then also they have to run the full week and then pack down, send everything back and prepare back in the factory."

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