According to the latest reports, Ferrari could announce Carlos Sainz very soon. Allegedly, The Italian team is still in the process of sorting out details in the Spaniard’s contract for next season. Several rumors hinted at Sainz joining Ferrari so an official confirmation shouldn’t be surprising.
For those unaware, earlier today, Ferrari announced that it wouldn’t be renewing Sebastian Vettel’s contract for 2021. As a result, the Scuderia now has a vacant seat for next year. Even before Ferrari’s announcement, many publications reported that Ferrari was considering 3 potential replacements, should Vettel choose to leave.
Well, Vettel is leaving at the end of the season, presenting Ferrari with a tricky choice. Apparently, Ferrari is considering Carlos Sainz, Daniel Ricciardo, and Antonio GIovinazzi as serious replacements. Truth be told, Giovinazzi is probably not in serious contention when compared to Sainz and Ricciardo.
According to the rumor mill, Ferrari has decided to sign the Spaniard for next season. According to noted Spanish journalist Antonio Lobato:
“Small details delay Ferrari’s announcement of Sainz as driver for 2021. It could be announced as soon as this week”
If that does really happen, this would easily be one of the craziest weeks in F1. There hasn’t been any racing action but that hasn’t stopped silly season from kicking off.
Many would argue that Daniel Ricciardo is a better replacement but Ferrari have their own reasons for choosing the young Spaniard. Firstly, salary. Ricciardo is currently one of the highest-earning drivers on the grid and Ferrari would probably shy away from bearing the honey badger’s exorbitant ask. More importantly, it also has to do with Ricciardo as a driver.
Yes, he’s a race winner and a guy who can take the heat. Moreover, he’s hungry for that World Championship glory in F1. However, Sainz has all of those qualities, maybe not to the same degree but Ferrari doesn’t need it.
With Vettel gone, Leclerc is unofficially the team’s number 1 driver and the Scuderia’s future. All Ferrari needs is a smart and fast driver who won’t be too much of a nuisance. Sainz is in no way a second driver but he can bide his time at Ferrari, knowing there’s always a chance in the future.