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Ferrari banking on 2023 opportunity for Giovinazzi with 11 F1 seats available

Ferrari banking on 2023 opportunity for Giovinazzi with 11 F1 seats available

F1 News

Ferrari banking on 2023 opportunity for Giovinazzi with 11 F1 seats available

Ferrari banking on 2023 opportunity for Giovinazzi with 11 F1 seats available

Ferrari team principal Mattia Binotto believes "opportunities" will exist for Antonio Giovinazzi to return to the F1 grid in 2023 after calculating as many as 11 seats will be available.

After three seasons with Alfa Romeo, Giovinazzi was dropped by the team at the end of the year, with the Italian marque opting for an all-new line-up of Valtteri Bottas and Guanyu Zhou after Kimi Raikkonen opted to retire.

Giovinazzi now faces a season in Formula E but will also serve as a reserve driver for Ferrari at 12 grands prix next year, splitting the duties with Mick Schumacher who will be available for the remaining 11 in the record 23-race campaign.

As a member of the Ferrari Driver Academy, Binotto still sees potential in Giovinazzi and already has an eye on a 2023 race seat for the 28-year-old.

Looking ahead, and speaking at a media briefing just before Christmas that included GPFans, Binotto said: "With Antonio, no doubt there can be some more opportunities for him in 2023.

"For the seats, there are, I think, 11 which will be free in 2023. I'm not saying all of them will be free at the end of the season.

"But if I look at the contracted drivers today, 11 contracts are finishing by the end of 2022, including Carlos [Sainz], but that is the situation.

"Which means that as a driver if you got any opportunity in 2023, a few are possible.

"That's why it's important for him to still be part of our F1 programme as a reserve driver, meaning activities at the simulator and keeping up to speed with the 2022 cars."

Binotto recently confirmed he is due to speak with Sainz about a new contract over the coming weeks, meaning that as many as 10 seats could become vacant.

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