Triple World Champion Sebastien Vettel is still hopeful that he could be partnered with his friend, former World Champion Kimi Raikkonen, somewhere down the line after reports indicated that talks between Kimi and the Red Bull team had broken down.
Speaking to ESPN regarding Kimi and the vacant seat, Vettel said: "First of all, I didn't know how realistic it was or not,"
"Obviously I've learned - similar to most of us, from the press - definitely that as it looks like that's not the case. For sure I'm talking with the team but as I've said many times it's not my decision so I don't want to get too involved."
Raikkonen and Vettel's friendship would have been a binding factor for the two highly competitive World Champions, in a sport where large egos seldom team up well.
"I think Kimi would have been nice in many ways, but now it's not happening so it doesn't make much sense to talk about that. But who knows? He's still young, I'm still young so I don't know. A lot of things can still happen so never say never, but probably next year it's not going to happen."
"I get along quite well with Kimi so I would be in a way happy if he finds a spot where he's happy. I think he has a good seat at the moment with Lotus, but if he can improve then I would be happy for him."
Regarding reports, linking Kimi with a move back to Ferrari, Vettel had a not so straightforward reply.
"I think Kimi is very straightforward, you don't get any bullsh*t with him and politics so in that regard I don't know how realistic it is for him to return to Ferrari. Obviously he's been there, Fernando came, Kimi left to go rallying … I think he's very uncomplicated."
Vettel and Raikkonen are the the top two in the Championship currently, with Seb leading Kimi by 38 points with nine races to go.
With Raikkonen likely to miss out, most reports have Torro Rosso driver Daniel Ricciardo taking the soon to be vacant Red Bull seat. Mark Webber is leaving Red Bull to join Porsche and race super-cars.