Sebastian Vettel looks "disinterested" at Aston Martin in 2022, according to former teammate Paul Di Resta.
The four-time World Champion was forced to watch on from the pit lane during Free Practice 2 at the Australian Grand Prix, after an engine issue left him riding a moped back to the garage at the end of FP1.
Having missed the first races of the 2022 season in Bahrain and Saudi Arabia due to a positive COVID-19 test, the setback has only slowed Vettel further as he pushes to get up to speed behind the wheel of his AMR22.
Di Resta: Vettel's not excited, is he?
But as Vettel explained the problems hindering his car to the media in Australia, his former Formula 3 Euro Series teammate, Di Resta, was left feeling that the 34-year-old is growing disinterested at Aston Martin.
"I was looking at that interview and thinking: He's not excited, is he?" said Di Resta, speaking to Sky Sports F1.
"He just looks disinterested. I don't know, that's the impression I get.
"I've known Seb for a long time, we were teammates in 2006, and that is not the body language where you get the best out of him"
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"It's not for me to say," continued Di Resta, when asked whether Vettel could leave the sport. "Maybe he's thinking something different.
"Aston are down that way and they've not had an easy season so far. I don't know how quickly they can fix it, they've been through a massive restructure and they have new leadership all through it.
"They're thinking about the future but they need to motivate him."
Herbert: They need to give him the car, quick
Former Benetton driver Johnny Herbert agreed with Di Resta's assessment, as he moved to warn Aston Martin that they must find a way to motivate their lead driver - and fast.
"It's the motivation. Motivation is a massively important thing for a driver," said three-time Grand Prix-winner Herbert, also speaking to Sky Sports F1.
"I don't think you can read it there but, if he gets the car, that motivation will come back - but they've got to give him the car quick."
Video: Aston Martin present their new F1 car!
Check out Aston Martin's new F1 challenger, the AMR22, which was presented to the world during a special launch ceremony.