Sebastian Vettel carries out first test as a Ferrari driver in F2012 at Fiorano
German will replace Fernando Alonso at the Scuderia in 2015
By William Esler
Last Updated: 01/12/14 6:19pm
Sebastian Vettel got his first taste of life as a Ferrari driver on Saturday as he drove the F2012 at the team’s Fiorano test track.
The four-time World Champion will replace Fernando Alonso at the Scuderia next season as he embarks on a new chapter in his career having been part of the Red Bull family since 1998.
The German sported a white helmet for the test with the words, "My first day at Ferrari" adnd Saturday's date written on it. The car carried the number five Vettel will use in 2015 – although perhaps rather confusingly it was the same number Alonso had had on that car in 2012.
“It was fantastic today to come here. I remember coming to Maranello as a little kid and trying to look over the fence so to be here officially as part of the team felt fantastic,” Vettel said.
“Looking back to the years when I was 11 or 12 years old and looking over the years trying to see a glimpse of Michael [Schumacher] running on the track and today I was on the track and I saw the Tifosi around. There is a lot of fairy tales about Ferrari and how it feels to drive a red car and so on and I can only confirm all these fairy tales. It is a true legend that exists and it feels really, really, special to become part of that.”
The F2012 is the most recent Ferrari Vettel is allowed to drive outside of an official session under F1’s stringent testing regulations.
Article 22.2 of the FIA F1 Sporting Regulations states:
‘Testing of Previous Cars (TPC) shall be defined as any track running time, not part of an Event, in which a competitor entered in the Championship participates (or in which a third party participates on behalf of a competitor), using cars which were designed and built in order to comply with the 2010, 2011 or 2012 Formula One Technical Regulations.
‘TPC may only be carried out with cars built to the specification of the period and only tyres manufactured specifically for this purpose may be used.’
Vettel also made an appearance in the Ferrari garage at the Abu Dhabi test earlier this week as he looks to familiarise himself with his new environment as quickly as possible.