Aston Martin wants Sebastian Vettel to consult with the team prior to launching surprise environmental campaigns at Formula 1 races.
The quadruple world champion has been taking widespread criticism as well as praise for his new-found cultural, social and environmental activism.
In Canada, the local energy minister slammed Vettel, 35, for speaking out so stridently about oil sands mining whilst being sponsored by Saudi Aramco.
“Everyone has their opinion about it,” Aston Martin team boss Mike Krack told Sport1.
“I don’t think you can muzzle top, intelligent athletes and I think it’s not fair to criticise him for his commitment. What happened in Canada was the best example of this.
“But as a team representative, what I would like is that Sebastian works even more closely with us on his actions and talks to us about them beforehand. Together we can achieve more,” the German added.
Some believe the clash between Vettel’s environmentalism and his job as an Aston Martin and Aramco ambassador explain the delay in negotiations over a new contract for 2023.
Krack insists the team is not putting pressure on the German.
“We have a very good relationship with Sebastian, so we don’t want to set a deadline. He knows our opinion,” he said.
“He knows we really want to continue with him. There are talks in which we fundamentally exchange ideas about how we can imagine a future together, and we’re taking our time with that.
“Sure, there comes a point where you have to make a decision, but I don’t have the feeling that he’s stalling for time.
“I think after the summer break is the time when we can and must be more specific. Until then, we don’t have a plan B,” Krack added.
Vettel’s protege and friend Mick Schumacher has been mentioned as one possible ‘plan B’, but Krack said he is not ready to consider that.
“We’re not talking about potential successors,” he insisted. “Neither with him nor with others.
“We want Sebastian to stay with us.”