Wurz: Ferrari pressure and system 'burns out' drivers

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GPDA chairman and ex-F1 racer Alex Wurz believes Sebastian Vettel's exit from Ferrari is the result of a "system" at the Scuderia that burns out drivers in the end.

Vettel and Ferrari decided earlier this month to part ways at the end of the season after six years together.

The four-time world champion's quest for bringing the title back to Maranello for the first time since 2008 has so far been unsuccessful. And that shortfall along with the pressure that comes with racing for Ferrari may have consumed Vettel according to Wurz.

"Sebastian is a friend of mine, but I didn’t see it coming," Wurz told Sky F1.

"He keeps those cards always very close to his chest.

"If you look at the history of Ferrari, you have these first few years and months of big love and all these radio calls, all the emotions that come out of it, which makes Ferrari so beautiful.

"But at one point, even with Fernando [Alonso], it seems like the whole system makes you go into burnout.

"Maybe the love is not there anymore, and that seemed to happen. But Sebastian hasn’t spoken to me about that."

While great rewards come to those who bring glory to Maranello, a failure to deliver will induce the wrath of an entire nation insists Wurz.

"There’s more to it than just racing passion," explained the former Benetton and Williams driver.

"There is really the national pressure up on you and the drivers go through that

"Ferrari are really demanding of the drivers, they really love you if you push them forward but if the success is not coming then suddenly that starts to backfire and they will also be protective about their heritage, work and quality.

"There is always friction, and that’s not just for drivers, they have also changed team principals also over the years. And I think that comes with outside influence but also the lifestyle. That mixture seems to be tricky.

"We look back at the Schumacher, Ross Brawn, Jean Todt era, that group went in there and was so strong, could succeed, and could push that Italian pressure, whatever you want to call it, to the side.

"Since they left, Ferrari is behind its own expectations."

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