Vettel: Aston Martin 'expected to be stronger' but shouldn't focus on 2022

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Sebastian Vettel doesn't think Aston Martin should give up on this season despite admitting the team "expected to be stronger".

After a much-improved 2020, many had the former Racing Point squad as the third-best team this season, potentially on the tail of Mercedes and Red Bull.

Instead, Aston was hurt more than anyone else by the new floor designs for this season and currently sit seventh in the Constructors' standings with five points, while Vettel himself is yet to score for his new team.

"It’s not a secret: we expected to be stronger this year," the four-time world champion said last week. "Obviously, for reasons we are not.

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"So it is what it is, yet I think we can grow as a team. There’s a lot of small things that we are looking at we can improve and I think the whole group is still very excited. The spirit is great.

"So I’m very happy where I am, despite obviously the performance not being where we all wanted it to be. I think we’ve accepted that, and we try to do the best we can from there."

With all-new cars coming for 2022, Vettel was asked if Aston Martin should consider abandoning this year's car early and try to gain an early lead on development. 

“I don’t think, not just now, but generally in life, that shortcuts will help you a big deal,” he replied.

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"There are so many things that we can still learn, and we can still have a better understanding [of] as a team. So I think it would be a wasted opportunity.

"Now, the question is obviously how you measure the opportunity, whether you measure in podiums and points, and wins or in a different currency.

"I think for us, as a team, we can still improve on a lot of small things, but in the end, it's always the small things that make a difference and lead to perfection.

"Even if you know we're not racing in the positions we would love to, I think it's still time well spent."