Another Canadian father in Formula 1
In addition to Lance and Lawrence Stroll, Formula 1 has a second Canadian driver in 2022 who has a father with a lot of money. Michael Latifi is a Canadian businessman who made his money with his own company Sofina Foods and investments in Lilydale and the Santa Maria Group, among others.
Father Latifi has put plenty of money into his son's career, but also caused a stir in 2018 with his investment in the McLaren Group. With a whopping £200 million, Michael and his investment company Nidala acquired ten per cent of McLaren's shares, causing the rumour mill to go wild. However, the investment seems to be unrelated to his son, because Nicholas never tested for McLaren and will not get a race seat.
Never won anything
That Latifi owes his career to his father seems like a jealous remark, but like Lance Stroll, his fellow countryman has barely notched up a highlight in other classes. Latifi didn't stand out in karting and when he made the switch to Formula Cars in 2012, talent scouts didn't notice him either.
The Canadian driver scored one win in Italian Formula 3 in 2012, only to remain dry until 2017. It was only then that the Canadian managed to score another victory in Formula 2.
Meanwhile, Latifi has been acquired as a test driver in Formula 1 since 2016. For the first two years, he worked with Renault to then make the switch to Force India in 2018. In 2019, Latifi will got the same role at Williams, after which he finally got a race seat in 2020.
Latifi hasn't made a real impression, as even in his sixth season in Formula 2 (three years of Formula 2 and three years of GP2) he failed to become a champion. Nyck de Vries was too fast for him, but Latifi did take four victories, scoring more in one season than in the rest of his career.
Debut at Williams
In 2020, Latifi joined Williams, which at the time had a severe shortage of money and knowledge. In 2018 and 2019, the historic team went down hard and a driver like Latifi could help the team get back on top.
In his first season, the Canadian was beaten by Russell, but in 2021 he experienced visible growth. Latifi was still a long way from his teammate during most race weekends, but he managed to catch up with him towards the end of the season.
Nicholas Latifi in 2022
With the radical rule changes of 2022 looming, Latifi will also be starting more or less from scratch. The Canadian will want to use the opportunity to silence critics and prove he is more than just a financial asset to Williams.