Sebastian Vettel will bring down the curtain on his illustrious Formula 1 career at the Abu Dhabi Grand Prix this weekend. A number of drivers have paid tribute to the German with most praising his humble human side rather than his racing pedigree that made him famous.

The German racer announced his retirement from the sport earlier this year after 16 years in the sport which have yielded him four Drivers' Championship titles. The 35-year-old will go down as one of the greatest to grace F1 after dominating the sport with Red Bull Racing between 2010 and 2013.

While he was known for his racing pedigree in the initial years, Vettel has shown his human side as grew in age and experience. Vettel has stood for a number of good causes during his career with climate change being at the forefront in recent years.

The Aston Martin driver is also among the most liked on the grid owing to his humble nature, and ability to offer support to anyone that is need of it. Former teammates Daniel Ricciardo and Charles Leclerc paid glowing tribute to Vettel, with both drivers stating that they can now call him a true friend.

Sebastian Vettel
Sebastian Vettel announced his retirement from Formula 1 at the end of the 2022 season. AFP / William WEST

Ricciardo shared a garage with Vettel during the 2014 season at Red Bull, and at the time was believed to be one of the reasons the latter left the team to join Ferrari. The Australian has endured a difficult time since leaving Red Bull himself, especially at McLaren this season.

The eight-time Grand Prix winner has spoken about Vettel's support during a difficult campaign. Ricciardo will also not be on the grid in 2023 after McLaren terminated his contract a year early to replace him with former F2 champion Oscar Piastri.

"He's picked up the phone multiple times this year, and just been a friend, and just like showing care, and just checking in as a true friend would do," Ricciardo said, as quoted on Motorsport.

"And to have friends like that is so important. But it's also not that common, in terms of on the grid."

Leclerc, meanwhile, spent two seasons with Vettel at Ferrari. During the Monegasque's second season in the sport and his first with the legendary Italian marque, he credited the German for helping him settle down at Maranello, while also helping him become a better driver.

"There are many moments with Seb that I remember well. Not necessarily moments on the track, but also moments at the factory," Leclerc told RN365.

"Now I can call him a friend and he texts me regularly. He did that again this year after my crash in France, Seb always tries to make me feel better when I'm going through a difficult period."

Charles Leclerc
Ferrari driver Charles Leclerc POOL via AFP / Giuseppe CACACE