Carlos Sainz Jr. is currently racing for Renault having switched to the French marquee at the US Grand Prix. Sainz Jr became a Renault driver, following a complex engine musical chair between Renault, Red Bull, McLaren and Toro Rosso. He will remain with the team for 2018 as well. But Red Bull instead of letting the Spaniard go loaned him to Renault. He is a Red Bull driver and a 2019 free agent. And now the rumor mill is linking him to the ‘A’ team for 2019. But when asked about it, Sainz Jr. dismissed the idea of thinking about a 2019 Red Bull seat. He said his focus is on his current team for the remaining races and for 2018.
The rumors aren’t without base either. Verstappen having signed a long-term deal with Red Bull has thrown Ricciardo’s future in disarray. He fears being sidelined and is looking for new pastures.
If Ricciardo indeed walks away then Red Bull will need a junior to step up. And Carlos Sainz Jr. is the most logical candidate. As things stand the prospects of Ricciardo leaving the team are gaining traction as Red Bull continues to mold around Verstappen.
It’ll be a great turn of fortune for Sainz though who up until now felt his career being stagnating at Toro Rosso. His short-term future is sorted now as he’ll drive the rapidly improving Renault car for next year. In the long run, the 2019 Red Bull opportunity is shaping up real nice for him. And even if not then he can simply continue with Renault. Or who knows with teams higher up in the echelon.
And hence the rumor mill connecting him to Red Bull is not without merit. Afterall there’s never smoke without the fire.