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As runner-up in the 2019 Formula 2 championship, Nicholas Latifi will make his Formula 1 debut in 2020. However, many will wonder if the Canadian got this place based on his performance (Latifi did not win any title yet) or if it is because of his father's wallet? Another Canadian dad.
After Lance Stroll we have a second Canadian Formula 1 driver in 2020 who has a father with quite a few pennies. Michael Latifi is a Canadian businessman who managed to earn his money with his own company Sofina Foods and investments in Lilydale and the Santa Maria Group.
Never won anything
Father Latifi has put enough money into his son's career, but also caused a stir with his investment in the McLaren Group in 2018. With no less than 200 million pounds, Michael and his investment company Nidala acquired ten percent of the shares of McLaren, which put the rumour mill at full speed. However, the investment seems to be independent of his son, because Nicholas never tested for McLaren and now he doesn't get the racing seat.
That Latifi owes his career to his father seems to be a jealous remark, but just like with Lance Stroll, his compatriot hardly notices a climax in passing through the other classes. Latifi doesn't stand out in go-karting and when he makes the switch to Formula cars in 2012, no lights will go on at the talent scouts.
The Canadian driver took one victory in 2012 in Italian Formula 3, only to remain dry until 2017. Only then does the Canadian manage to achieve another victory in Formula 2.
In the meantime Latifi can be admired as a test driver in Formula 1 since 2016. First two years at Renault to make the switch to Force India in 2018. In 2019 Latifi got the same role at Williams, after which he will get a racing seat for 2020.
Latifi hasn't made a real impression yet, because even in his sixth season in Formula 2 (three years of Formula 2 and three years of GP2) he hasn’t managed to become a champion. Nyck de Vries was too fast for him, but Latifi takes four victories and scores more victories in one season than in the rest of his career combined.
Latifi in the 2020 F1 season
However, money doesn't always make you happy, because Latifi is boarding with Williams in 2020, which clearly has a shortage of money and knowledge. In 2018 and 2019 the illustrious team fell hard and the question is whether it can get back up in 2020? With 2021 around the corner and limited financial resources at their disposal, Williams seems to have to focus on the big rule changes for 2021.
The chances of George Russell and Nicholas Latifi competing for the points is therefore small. In addition, Latifi will have to work, as Russell out-drove Robert Kubica. Russell also became a rookie champion in Formula 2 when the Canadian himself finished ninth with four years of experience in F2 in his pocket. We'll see if Latifi is really an added value for Williams or if it's mainly about his father's pennies.
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