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Formula 1's 2021 driver line-up - as it stands

Formula 1's 2021 driver line-up - as it stands



Formula 1's 2021 driver line-up - as it stands

Formula 1's 2021 driver line-up - as it stands

Following a flurry of recent activity and announcements, only 11 seats are now available with Formula 1 teams for the 2021 season.

Sebastian Vettel's decision to leave Ferrari at the end of this year sparked the moves of Carlos Sainz and Daniel Ricciardo.

Racing Point team principal Otmar Szafnauer, whose team will become Aston Martin next season, unsurprisingly confirmed this week on a Canadian radio station that Sergio Perez and Lance Stroll will again be the pairing in 2021.

Here GPFans gives you the rundown as to who is driving where and which seats remain open.

Mercedes - ?/?

Who will be driving off in a Mercedes next season?

Both Lewis Hamilton and Valtteri Bottas are out of contract at the end of this season. It appears inevitable Hamilton will re-sign a new deal, leaving Bottas to again fight for his place. Mercedes has been linked with Vettel, while promoting George Russell is also an option open to boss Toto Wolff.

Ferrari - Charles Leclerc/Carlos Sainz

Leclerc and Sainz will be team-mates at Ferrari in 2021

Leclerc now has a long-term contract in his pocket through to the end of 2024 as Ferrari are pinning their future on the 22-year-old Monégasque. The Scuderia took little time to confirm Vettel's replacement, handing Carlos Sainz a two-year deal.

Red Bull - Max Verstappen/?

Will Albon still be Verstappen's team-mate at Red Bull next year?

In January, Red Bull confirmed Verstappen had signed a contract extension through to the end of 2023, ensuring they have a champion-in-waiting on their books for the next four seasons. Alex Albon enjoyed a superb debut season last term, earning his promotion from Toro Rosso for the second half. He will need to run Verstappen close this year to ensure he retains his seat for '21

McLaren - Daniel Ricciardo/Lando Norris

Ricciardo and Norris will provide plenty of smiles at McLaren

Sainz's departure naturally came as a surprise, in particular, given his remarks last term as to how he felt 'at home' with McLaren in his first year with the team. The Spaniard's exit, however, paved the way for McLaren to recruit seven-time race-winner Ricciardo from Renault. His partnership with Norris, who is contracted for next year, should provide some laughs, as well as strong results.

Renault - Esteban Ocon/?

Who will get to partner Ocon at Renault in 2021?

Ricciardo's decision to leave the French manufacturer has now opened up a vacancy that Vettel could potentially fill, although the team is still an ongoing project and has yet to even claim a podium place over the past four seasons since its return. Fernando Alonso has also been touted to step out of retirement and rejoin, but again does the two-time champion want the hassle of trying to build up a team? Ocon is seen as the future after signing an initial two-year deal.

AlphaTauri - ?/?

Kvyat and Gasly will have to work hard to remain at AlphaTauri

There is always a difficulty in trying to predict this line-up until it is announced given the Red Bull hierarchy's penchant for promoting from its junior development programme. Daniil Kvyat and Pierre Gasly currently occupy the seats, and it is likely they will retain them if both perform well given the talent pool is thin on the ground, with only Estonian Jüri Vips showing any promise.

Aston Martin Racing - Sergio Perez/Lance Stroll

Same line-up, different colours for these two next year with Aston Martin Racing

Perez, who has been with the team since 2014, is contracted through to 2022, with the sponsorship he brings with him one of the key reasons behind his longevity. Szafnauer's announcement confirming Stroll for next season was inevitable given his father Lawrence's influence. There remains a belief he will continue to make progress.

Alfa Romeo - ?/?

Does Raikkonen fancy one more season with Alfa Romeo?

Both Kimi Raikkonen and Antonio Giovinazzi are out of contract at the end of the year. Could whatever campaign transpires this year be the Finn's swansong? You would assume, if he has the appetite, the team would love to retain him. Giovinazzi's path to Ferrari has now been blocked, and while Mattia Binotto may still have faith in the Ferrari junior, his place is far less secure.

Haas - ?/?

Will Haas still be in F1 in 2021?

This is the fourth year of the Kevin Magussen/Romain Grosjean pairing. At present, there are no guarantees the team will continue beyond this season as team owner Gene Haas has yet to indicate his plans. If Haas remains, will it finally be time to bring in fresh blood?

Williams - George Russell/?

Russell would surely love to be in same colours as Hamilton at Mercedes next year

Mercedes junior Russell is contracted through to 2021, yet he will obviously have his eye on replacing Bottas at Mercedes. It will all be a question of timing for Mercedes and whether they will feel he is ready to make the jump. Nicolas Latifi is his team-mate this season, and without a wheel yet turning in anger, it is impossible to comment on his future prospects, although the funding he has brought with him will assist his cause.

Before you go...

British GP "impossible" under UK quarantine plans - F1

McLaren understand the "allure" of Ferrari to Sainz


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