Formula 1 president Stefano Domenicali is very much open to keeping Sebastian Vettel in the fold after he retires.
Vettel has been a part of the Formula 1 grid since 2007, but at the Hungarian Grand Prix, he announced to the world that the 2022 season will be his last in the series.
Having not had the chance to go racing in a competitive car since 2019, Vettel's father recently confirmed that racing near the back with Aston Martin had accelerated retirement thoughts for his son, the 2022 Austrian Grand Prix proving to be the low point.
Vettel has, over the past few years, found a second purpose for his Formula 1 career, that being to use the platform to speak out about environmental and social issues, while also setting up various projects of his own to address his concerns.
Recently, Vettel's compatriot and six-time Formula 1 race winner, Ralf Schumacher, claimed that some of the series' higher-ups, including Domenicali, were glad that Vettel is leaving because of how directly he addressed what he perceived to be Formula 1's problems.
Motorsport-Total.com quote him as having told Sky Germany "internally in Formula 1 some are now happy he's gone, especially Domenicali and co, because he addressed all the problems directly, so in part was very uncomfortable, but rightly so".
However, Domenicali's words after Vettel's retirement announcement appear to counter that.
If it was the case that he will be happy to see the back of Vettel, then he would not be open to keeping the four-time World Champion around.
But in fact, Domenicali would "welcome" the chance to keep Vettel involved with Formula 1 in a different capacity to driving.
"Of course we want the link to remain close in the future," Domenicali told Sport Bild.
"If he is interested in becoming part of our system and the approaches fit, I would of course welcome him here."
Sebastian Vettel would make the perfect ambassador for Formula 1's journey to a greener future
There is no doubt that Vettel asks the hard-hitting questions of Formula 1, especially when it comes to the series' carbon footprint, but that has hardly been a negative thing.
Formula 1 has seemingly embraced the challenge of reducing its impact on the environment, with new power units on the way for 2026 that will be powered by a fully sustainable fuel. Vettel himself completed a demo run on a fuel of the like at Silverstone, where it powered Nigel Mansell's title-winning Williams with Vettel at the wheel.
By 2030 Formula 1 aims to be carbon neutral, so having someone like Vettel on board, advising the series on an issue which he is deeply passionate about, and promoting the positive work of Formula 1 to the outside world and his army of fans, hardly sounds like a bad thing.
Alonso makes shock Aston Martin move
Fernando Alonso has signed for Aston Martin on a multi-year deal to replace Sebastian Vettel.
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