Fans of Formula 1 driver Sebastian Vettel are no doubt waiting to see their favourite driver back in contention for wins and podiums after his struggles with Ferrari. His debut with Aston Martin was unremarkable in 2021, but Red Bull chief Helmut Marko believes his form will improve. However, when the improvement will happen remains the question.

The German driver finished a lowly 13th in the standings in 2020, a staggering 65 points behind then Ferrari teammate Charles Leclerc. This led to speculations about Vettel having lost the speed that took him to four Drivers World Championship titles from 2010-13.

Vettel was expected to get back to his best form with Aston Martin Racing but he has not had the best of starts after struggling with reliability issues in testing and then enduring a poor opening race weekend in Bahrain last month.

The former Red Bull driver finished 15th after starting at the back of the pack following a poor qualifying session and a late penalty for speeding under yellow flags. He will be hoping that he can turn it around when the F1 circus arrives at Imola for the second race of the season.

Marko, however, is of the opinion that it will take at least "five races" for Vettel to get back his mojo that saw him win races for Red Bull and Ferrari. He admits that the German has made his fair share of mistakes in the past year, but laid some of the blame on Aston Martin's 2021 challenger, which has not reacted well to the new aerodynamic rules imposed for this season.

"Sebastian hasn't been able to make many metres in the Aston Martin car, but he's also made some mistakes," Marko told RTL, as quoted on Planet F1.

"We saw the difficulties Mercedes had in the test with the troubled car. Aston Martin and Mercedes have some similarities in terms of philosophy.

"What we saw from Aston Martin in Bahrain was that the car was of the same level as during the test. It immediately shows how strong Mercedes are because they already managed to solve some difficulties prior to the first race," he added.

"A large team is able to respond immediately. I assume that with some time, a race or three or five, hopefully Vettel will also flourish at Aston Martin."

Lewis Hamilton
Lewis Hamilton with Sebastian Vettel in 2018 Getty