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Mateschitz would welcome Alonso or Hamiltonto Red Bull if Vettel were to leave for Ferrari
Sunday 25th November 2012, 09:25 by Ryan Wood
© Red Bull Racing, Getty Images
Red Bull owner Dietrich Mateschitz doesn't believe Sebastian Vettel has agreed a pre-contract to move to Ferrari in 2014, but admits if such a move did occur, there is nothing stopping Fernando Alonso or Lewis Hamilton replacing the German at the Austrian outfit.
In an interview with the Salzburger Nachrichten newspaper, the billionaire rated Vettel, Alonso and Hamilton as the current three best drivers but believes the former has more development potential.
"Sebastian is one of the three best drivers in addition to Alonso and Hamilton," said Mateschitz. "He is the youngest of the three and certainly has further development potential.
"He overcame his critics confidently in Abu Dhabi where he charged through the field twice from behind."
Speaking of the speculated Ferrari deal, which many in the paddock believe to be in place for 2014, the 68-year-old said it's a fabricated story created by the media.
"This is only a media topic and isn't real," he added. "Sebastian has a contract with us and not only that, but also loyalty and friendship.
"That does not mean that he doesn't get offers from other teams though," conceded Mateschitz who admits driving for Ferrari is a natural urge.
"If I were racing, I'd probably [want to] drive for Ferrari eventually. This is not only natural, but perfectly legitimate."
Should Vettel eventually move to a rival team, the Austrian says there is nothing stopping Alonso or Hamilton replacing him.
"If it should ever be, we wish him all the best, and then Alonso or Hamilton would drive for us. Ultimately it comes down to sports, and it's is only important that it remains exciting."
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