Ferrari has confirmed that Sebastian Vettel will depart the team at the end of the season, bringing to an end the six-year relationship between the parties.
Four-time World Champion Vettel joined Ferrari for 2015 on a three-year deal, which he renewed for the same length for 2018.
Ferrari and Vettel spoke positively over the prospect of renewing beyond 2020 during pre-season press conferences, but a new deal was not forthcoming.
Reports emerged on Monday evening that discussions between the parties had broken down and on Tuesday Ferrari confirmed that Vettel will not continue with the team into 2021.
“This is a decision taken jointly by ourselves and Sebastian, one which both parties feel is for the best,” said Ferrari team boss Mattia Binotto.
“It was not an easy decision to reach, given Sebastian’s worth as a driver and as a person.
“There was no specific reason that led to this decision, apart from the common and amicable belief that the time had come to go our separate ways in order to reach our respective objectives.
“Sebastian is already part of the Scuderia’s history, with his 14 Grands Prix wins making him the third most successful driver for the team, while he is also the one who has scored the most points with us. In our five years together, he has finished in the top three of the Drivers’ Championship three times, making a significant contribution to the team’s constant presence in the top three of the Constructors’ classification.
“On behalf of everyone at Ferrari, I want to thank Sebastian for his great professionalism and the human qualities he has displayed over these five years, during which we shared so many great moments.
“We have not yet managed to win a world title together, which would be a fifth for him, but we believe that we can still get a lot out of this unusual 2020 season.”
Charles Leclerc’s contract with Ferrari runs through 2024.