Porsche not slamming door after Vettel snub

May 13 (GMM) Sebastian Vettel needs “more time” before he is ready to take on Le Mans with a car that is capable of winning the fabled 24-hour endurance race.

The retired quadruple world champion, who had also been linked with a potential return to Formula 1, recently tested Porsche’s 963 top-tier hypercar.

However, Porsche ultimately decided to leave the 36-year-old German out of the lineup for the third car entry, option instead for the Le Mans-experienced Mathieu Jaminet, Felipe Nasr and Nick Tandy.

“Ultimately, one of the deciding factors was having Le Mans experience,” said boss Urs Kuratle.

However, Kuratle insists that the door has not been slammed on Vettel.

“For an OEM team like Porsche, this remains a topic of discussion, that goes without saying,” he told motorsport-total.com when asked about Vettel.

“That also applies to Vettel,” Kuratle added. “I think he’s up for it. He indicated this himself after the tests.

“So it remains a topic, but we still have to see when and in what form it will come together. Nothing has been set in stone at the moment.”

Kuratle says it’s completely understandable that getting up to speed will take longer for Vettel, who only ever raced open-wheelers in his entire career.

“The biggest difference today is probably the weight of the car,” he explained. “Both types of cars (hypercar and F1) are very complex, but they differ in design.”

He also said Vettel lacks experience racing at night and whilst on track with much slower cars in different world endurance championship categories.

“I just don’t think any of this has been addressed before,” said Kuratle. “This means that Vettel now needs a little more time to get used to it than was previously the case.”

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