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Here's who could join the F1 grid in 2025 as three stars fight to keep their seats

Here's who could join the F1 grid in 2025 as three stars fight to keep their seats

Here's who could join the F1 grid in 2025 as three stars fight to keep their seats

Here's who could join the F1 grid in 2025 as three stars fight to keep their seats

The 2024 Formula 1 season is only four rounds down, but there are already signs that some in the class of '24 won't be around for 2025.

While the 20 drivers entering the curtain-opening Bahrain race were the same that drove in last year's Abu Dhabi finale, that will not be the case again next season.

READ MORE: Red Bull driver change 'has to happen now' claims Schumacher

Contracts ending, poor performances, and hotshot junior drivers are setting up F1's annual game of musical chairs to be one for the ages.

We know Lewis Hamilton will switch to Ferrari and that Carlos Sainz is the sport's most eligible bachelor, but how about those who must literally drive to survive in 2024 and haven't yet shown the goods?

Here are the drivers facing a short-term F1 future and those in the frame to replace them.

READ MORE: Ricciardo handed MAJOR car boost in teammate battle with Tsunoda

Daniel Ricciardo

Ricciardo faces uncertainty

The honey badger's triumphant return to the sport in 2023 was short-lived after he sustained an injury over the Dutch Grand Prix weekend.

Many thought Ricciardo could face the chop for 2024 after Liam Lawson parachuted in and immediately impressed AlphaTauri without any F1 experience.

Yet Ricciardo was the Faenza team's Australasian driver of choice but is now underperforming next to Yuki Tsunoda, with the Japanese racer outqualifying him at all four races this season and the Aussie not scoring any of RB's seven points.

It's not a good look for a race-winning driver at a team meant to nurture talent to lose against someone without a podium 176 races his junior.

With Ricciardo and Tsunoda under the microscope in late 2023, Lawson looked the chief contender to replace one of the RB drivers before the 2024 season began.

However, this year's first four races have changed the complexion of RB's 2025 line-up storyline to become "Who will be Tsunoda's teammate" instead.

With Isack Hadjar, one of Helmut Marko's favourite juniors, also recently finding form in F2 and Ayumu Iwasa joining RB for FP1 in Japan, there's not a shortage of possible replacements should the Lawson option not work out for any reason.

Ricciardo's F1 days are numbered unless he turns his season around soon.

READ MORE: F1 star has 'NO INTEREST' in driving beyond 2024

Kevin Magnussen

Hulkenberg outscored Magnussen

Like Ricciardo, Kevin Magnussen was a driver left in the motorsport wilderness before surprisingly coming back to be the safe pair of hands at the expense of a more inexperienced racer.

Having first joined Haas in 2017, the Danish driver is a long-time part of the American team's furniture, but Haas is no longer under Guenther Steiner's stewardship, the man who twice brought Magnussen in.

Suggestions that Ollie Bearman was to advance into F1 for 2025 started with the announcement that the Ferrari Driver Academy ace would participate in six FP1 sessions over the season.

That's an unprecedented move. With so few hours to hone car setup in any race weekend, there's no reason to give up a full-time driver's seat to a rookie for more than the mandated two sessions unless it helps the team in another way, and that's what Haas is doing.

Logan Sargeant enjoyed four FP1s in 2022 before the inevitable 2023 graduation, and Bearman will follow a similar path, with his sensational Saudi Arabian race for Ferrari only fanning the young Brit's flames.

Nico Hulkenberg outscored Magnussen in their first year together in 2023 and is already marginally outperforming the Dane in 2024 despite Magnussen's vastly longer time with the team.

Although Hulkenberg might not remain with Haas for 2025 amid the rumours of Audi's interest, he looks to have more admirers in the paddock to keep him on the grid compared to Magnussen, who, without Steiner, looks to have no one ready to extend his F1 career.

READ MORE: Hamilton WALKS AWAY from interview after Ferrari question

Logan Sargeant

Sargeant crashed in Japan

Williams is a team who have had their fair share of rocky starts to F1 seasons recently, but 2024 has been particularly punishing.

Neither Alex Albon nor Logan Sargeant have scored points, and their 2024 challenger hasn't reached Q3 in any of the four rounds.

Of course, Albon's Australian crash halved the chances for Williams to reach qualifying's final session as Sargeant sat the Saturday out, but it did show James Vowles' driver preference.

The American wasn't the one to destroy a chassis, but he was Vowles' choice to keep out of the cockpit to maximise Williams' chances of points.

That's a publicly damning assessment of Sargeant, and by crashing upon his Japanese FP1 return, that snub doesn't look to have lit a fire of determination to prove his masters wrong like at Ferrari with Carlos Sainz.

Sargeant still hasn't beaten Albon in any qualifying session, and his rookie-like error at Degner 2 during the Japanese GP is alarming when Williams needs two drivers capable of grabbing a top-10 finish when the midfield is tighter than ever.

With Mercedes fielding Andrea Kimi Antonelli at Spielberg in an F1 car, suggesting they want him in the sport, gauging the young Italian in a lower-pressure environment like Williams for 2025 would be sensible.

Felipe Drugovich and Theo Pourchaire are also without any F1 race running, despite doing what Sargeant didn't by becoming F2 champions, and might also give Williams better point-scoring opportunities.

With 2024 still only Sargeant's second season, an upturn in form can easily save his career, but time is ticking for the American.

READ MORE: F1 Results: Japanese GP final classification after penalties applied

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Lewis Hamilton Ferrari Carlos Sainz Daniel Ricciardo AlphaTauri Liam Lawson
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