The cork in the driver market bottle has been released as Formula 1’s contract approval committee has decided that Oscar Piastri will race for McLaren in 2023-24.
First, although not imminent, Alpine is likely to finalize a deal for a third driver, Pierre Gasly, to partner Esteban Ocon next year.
Race understands it has reached an agreement with Red Bull for the release of Gasly from the final year of his contract.
But that still leaves four teams and a total of five seats uncertain, with AlphaTauri having two potential vacancies for next season as they have yet to confirm that Yuki Tsunoda will stay. .
Tsunoda is likely to stay on the team. He has made progress this year, made fewer mistakes and at times displayed a faster pace than Gasly.
He has also worked well at Honda, where he maintains close ties with the team. However, Red Bull has yet to confirm Tsunoda for 2023. This is also to keep the 22-year-old Tsunoda under pressure and see how he fares after a difficult run before the summer break. .
IndyCar race winner Colton Hertha is linked to the second seat and could work for AlphaTauri for a number of reasons. It hopes to take advantage of the growing popularity of F1 in the United States to further strengthen its brand, and is interested in assessing Hertha’s F1 potential.
Given that none of Red Bull’s junior teams have made a compelling case for promotion, the lack of a clear next cab in the ranks suggests AlphaTauri’s agreement to release Andretti and his IndyCar If you can reach , it means you can afford to bet on Hertha Deal. I mean, he can get a superlicence – far from a foregone conclusion.
If not, AlphaTauri can look to Mick Schumacher.
Schumacher is on his way to exit at both Haas and Ferrari Driver Academy and could give AlphaTauri a driver with several years of experience, but there are question marks about his eventual potential.
Schumacher could still stay at Haas, but his struggles and occasional peaks this season alone mean the team is leaning toward replacing him. And if the team can get him on acceptable terms, he’ll likely be at the top of the list. Nico Hulkenberg and Antonio Giovinazzi are also in contention.
Alfa Romeo has signed a contract with Valtteri Bottas, but Zhou Guan Yu has yet to be confirmed. Although it has suggested he is likely to stay on, Alfa Romeo has confirmed that its relationship with the team will end at the end of next season, with hopes that Audi will buy control, a surprise. cannot be ruled out.
Williams has a vacancy alongside Alex Albon, and Nicholas Latifi remains an outside contender simply because he is incumbent, but the team decided early in the season they had seen enough. That was when the loan deal with Piastri was on the cards.
Formula E and F2 champion Nick de Vries spoke with Williams at FP1 in Spain earlier this year and drove for the team. Ricciardo would appeal to Williams if he’s interested in dropping down to the slowest team in F1 right now.
But a small pool of otherwise experienced options, including Mick Schumacher, or a potential upside pick for teams considering the possibility of promoting junior driver Logan Sargent from F2. There is no doubt that it will become
But as the last few months have proven, the F1 driver market can always take unexpected hits. Assuming Gasly’s move to Alpine is nearing completion, the combination of AlphaTauri-owning Red Bull and Ricciardo will be key players in the next move.
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