Schumacher eyes Vettel as his Mercedes successor

Updated: Jan 31, 2011, 23:22 PM IST

Berlin: Formula One world champion and Red Bull driver Sebastian Vettel should be a future target for Mercedes, fellow German and seven-times world champion Michael Schumacher said on Monday.

Vettel became Formula One`s youngest world champion when the 23-year-old clinched the title at the season-ending Abu Dhabi Grand Prix in November.

"Very hypothetically speaking it would be absolutely unreasonable if Mercedes did not try to find out if Sebastian would like to drive for us in the future," Schumacher told a newspaper.

Schumacher, 42, had a disappointing return to Formula One last season after a three-year absence. In his 19 races with Mercedes his best result was fourth place in Spain, Turkey and South Korea.

"Because my own future (as Formula One driver) is relatively calculable," added Schumacher, who has another two years left on his contract with Mercedes.

"Mind you, I am speaking purely theoretically. I am not saying it is like that."

He said he also met Vettel socially, away from the races, and the two drivers, as well as Mercedes motor sport vice president Norbert Haug were friends.

"It is no secret that Sebastian is at our place sometimes. We celebrate together, we eat dinner sometimes. There is a long friendship there between him, me, Norbert, us."

Bureau Report