Horner cools Vettel-Ferrari link
Sebastian Vettel (pictured) will not be joining Ferrari according to Christian Horner
Sebastian Vettel has not signed a pre-contract agreement with Ferrari, according to Red Bull team principal Christian Horner.
Recent rumours have linked the reigning double world champion with a move to Ferrari when his deal at Red Bull expires at the end of the 2014 season. It has even been suggested Vettel has performance-related clauses in his existing deal which could result in him moving to Maranello before then.
But Horner insists the 24-year-old does not have an option in place with Ferrari, and said: "I can't see that because all contracts have to be declared with the Contract Recognition Board for a kick off. I've also spoken to Sebastian about it, and he has made it quite clear he hasn't had any dialogue and hasn't signed anything with Ferrari, but I guess the rumour mill will always continue."
Despite the stories filtering out of Italy and Germany regarding Vettel's future, Horner believes the German will remain at Red Bull "for quite a few years to come".
Horner said: "I wouldn't say it's frustrating because most of our team has been going to Ferrari at some point, be it Adrian Newey, Mark Webber or Sebastian. Even I'm supposed to be going there.
"But Sebastian is very comfortable in the team, and the team is very comfortable with him. He's been with Red Bull for over 12 years now, and I think he'll be with us for quite a few years to come, so I have no concern over Sebastian and where he'll be in 2013, 2014, or beyond."
Horner believes the relationship and trust built up with Vettel over such a long period is key to a continued future.
Horner added: "His current contract is already pretty long, we're two and a half years away from that point. But at the end of the day a piece of paper only reflects what you have agreed.
"A relationship between driver and team goes much deeper than that. For a driver to perform at his best he has to feel comfortable in the environment and believe in the team.
"Conversely, the team has to feel comfortable in the driver and have faith and belief in him. It's a two-way street, and that very much exists with Sebastian."
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One finds it easy to suggest that for Mr. Vettel to seek to move from a currently successful Red Bull team to a historically successful, though latterly inconsistent, Ferrari team might be the equivalent of killing the goose which lays the golden eggs. Why would anyone want to leave behind the superb skills of the fabulous F1 designer and aerodynamicist Adrian Newey?
Unless, perhaps, Ferrari want to secure the package for themselves ; Vettel & Newey?