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Sebastian Vettel's Profile

By BMW Sauber F1 Team
November 18 2006

Sebastian Vettel was just 18 years old when he was first offered the chance of sitting at the wheel of a Formula One car – and not simply for a photo. BMW invited the gifted German young gun to participate in a test for the BMW Williams F1 Team late in the 2005 season.

This invitation didn’t come by incident. In 2004, the youngster from Heppenheim had secured the Formula BMW Germany title in superb style, winning 18 of the 20 rounds, thereby proving both his dominance and his skills.

In July 2006, the now 19-year-old was back behind the wheel of a Formula One car. This time however, he was offered the chance of testing a BMW Sauber F1.06. During these tests, Sebastian massively impressed the BMW Sauber F1 Team engineers. “This was obviously a special opportunity for me,” reveals the young German, “But I simply tried to take it easy and concentrate on my job. The whole day went really well.”

Following his fantastic Formula BMW Germany season, in 2005 Sebastian moved to the Formula 3 Euro Series to gather further single-seater racing experience. And in his second season, he secured his maiden win, making it to the top step of the podium at the Hockenheimring.

However, the step up to becoming a Friday tester in Formula One is the biggest Sebastian has had to cope with in his career so far. Now, he will have to face completely different tasks. He must support the team’s GP regulars, Nick Heidfeld and Robert Kubica, while making the right tyre choice and finding the perfect set-up for the respective venue, as well as gathering as much data as possible. Apart from that, Sebastian will travel to countries he doesn’t know and must adapt to circuits he has never raced on before. But this shouldn’t be too difficult a task for the young man who loves reading and analysing telemetry data, just as his contemporaries love gaming on their Playstations and computers.

His career:

Sebastian Vettel inherited the motor racing gene from his father, an enthusiastic hill-climb racer who also competed in karting events. Obviously, young Sebastian was keen to try and follow in his father’s footsteps. “It didn’t take long before I was given my first kart,” recalls the BMW Sauber F1 Team’s Friday test driver. “I lapped our yard again and again and didn’t want to get out of the kart. And I was just three years old.”

At the age of seven, Sebastian made his debut appearance as a racing driver – and soon celebrated his first of his kart racing successes. In 1997, at the age of ten, he secured his first German title. It wasn’t long before he was dominating his opponents, therefore, in 1999, he switched to racing on European circuits, quickly adapting to the new challenge. Just two years after his international debut, Sebastian clinched the European kart title.

Sebastian covered his first kilometres in single-seater racing car at the wheel of a BMW. In 2003, his maiden Formula BMW season, he took the Rookie title, and in the following season he out-classed his opponents by winning 18 of the season’s 20 races. In 2005, he made the next step, moving up to the Formula 3 Euro Series. Again he secured the Rookie title in his first season. Following his wins in this year’s rounds at Hockenheim and the Nürburgring, Sebastian may yet win the 2006 championship.

Now, the young gun also wants to impress in the pinnacle of motor racing as BMW Sauber F1 Team test driver, and he definitely appears to have what is needed to do so.

>Factsheet:

Name: Sebastian Vettel
Date of birth: 3rd July 1987
Place of birth: Heppenheim, Germany
Residence: Heppenheim, Germany
Marital status: single
Hair colour: brown
Eye colour: blue
Races contested: -
Victories: -
Best placing: -
Poles: -


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