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  • Writer's pictureDrew Bentham

Exploring the Impact of Lewis Hamilton and Carlos Sainz on the 2025 F1 Driver Market.

Lewis Confirmed at Ferrari

So it's now official! And as the motorsport community gathers to get it's head around the news, I'm going to take a look at the impact of Hamilton move on Carlos Sainz and the 2025 driver market.

At the age of 39, Lewis is not the oldest on track, thanks to the resurgence in Alonso's career. But in reality this is probably Lewis' last move and hurrah in F1. It's also quite telling for the forthcoming season. Lewis clearly hasn't been convinced by the teams progress which leads me to think the 24 car isn't up to the level it needs to be. Surely this is the main reason for the switch and when the season opens in Bahrain at the end of the month, I'm sure we'll find out. Even so this could be a difficult year to navigate and the timing is strange to say the least.

The move does make sense though. Like Schumacher, Lewis will be hoping to emulate the great by bringing the prancing horse back to winning ways before his retirement. The car is better than it has been in previous years showing pace and reliability largely on track, so maybe the 24 car will be enough to keep up with the Red Bull. I hope between Fred Vasseur and Lewis, they can stop the indecision that has plagued the team as this will be the key to beating Max. Lewis should be able to bring back his qualifying prowess to add to his pole tally giving them the advantage on Sunday. But they need to be able to out-think them too.

Give a thought to Charles though. He's gone from team leader pretty much to 2nd driver to a multiple champion and formidable racer. That puts him, and his career, in an awkward position. He will want to win at all stages so how he deals with playing back up when asked too will be interesting. Let's hope he fairs better than Bottas did when he partnered him in the Merc.

So what of the rest of the field?

Sainz Jr could end up with a path to the top

Back at Mercedes, they still have to do what they can to bring the car to the front. Heading the effort alongside Toto is now George Russell who still hasn't had the benefit of a championship winning car which he must have been looking forward to when he joined the team. The most likely replacement would be Sainz himself. Swapping one top team for another wouldn't be a bad move, especially with the new regs only a few years away. Both drivers are amenable and should get on. Mercedes could do worse but then there are other players due in the market at the end of the year so it's not a slam dunk, plus when has F1 ever been that straightforward? Keep an eye on Alonso as he must be eying up the seat too. After his last sensational move to Aston I wouldn't be surprised. Alonso has nothing to lose and everything to gain.

Danny Ric is set for the Red Bull drive. After managing to claw his way back into the brand after leaving in the circumstances he did, there's no way he'll jeopardise what he's been working towards. Still though, he's set to be driver 2 at best, at least until Max leaves. If this does happen it opens up a seat at the appaulingly named Red Bull Visa Cash app team. Playing the long game to get into a Red Bull proper could be a savvy move also.

Carlos has been linked to Sauber too given the team will become an official Audi works outfit from 2026. This may very well be a smart move given their racing pedigree in other formulas. Of course it wouldn't hurt that his dad, World Rally Champion Carlos Sainz Sr also has links to Audi via his Dakar drive.

Perhaps the other teams may see a teak here and there but largely it looks for now as if those are pretty stable going into 2025. Lando Norris seems happy at McLaren and given they seem to be in a better position than Mercedes at the moment it would be a crazy move to join them. Unless of course Merc have a stella 24 and McLaren bomb. Who knows with F1, the sands are constantly shifting so lots to keep an eye on this year. The race results may end up being as expected but the relative performance of the other teams will make for an interesting watch. Speaking of which, watch this space for more....

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