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F1 Silly Season | Who will get the last seats for 2023?
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F1 Silly Season | Who will get the last seats for 2023?

27 June - 08:26 Last update: 08:40
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GPblog.com

Formula 1 is approaching the summer break and traditionally this is a time when the Silly Season kicks in. However, many deals have already been done, leaving only a few spots on the F1 grid, but still many candidates. GPblog brings you up to date on the situation.

Red Bull Racing

The world championship leader has things in order. Not only has it built a race-winning car under the new regulations, but after nine races Max Verstappen and Sergio Perez top the drivers' championship. The Dutchman signed a deal prior to the season that will see him remain with Red Bull until 2028, but Perez has also been given a contract until 2024.

Ferrari

The number two in the world championship has also completed its line-up for 2023. Charles Leclerc has already been signed up to 2024 and Carlos Sainz was also offered a contract extension at the start of the season. The two drivers of the Italian team are now locked in for the same period.

Mercedes

The German team has slipped down the rankings a little in 2022, but is still the third team on the grid. George Russell is new to the team and signed a multi-year deal. The number of years was not disclosed, but in 2023 we will see Russell back at Mercedes anyway. Lewis Hamilton also has a contract until 2023. There are rumours that the seven-time world champion would like to quit, but the Briton does not seem to be someone who will just give up and tear up his contract.

McLaren

Lando Norris is also one of the young drivers who has a long deal in his pocket. The Briton is stuck with the team from Woking until 2025. Daniel Ricciardo still has a contract until 2023 and despite the many rumours, both parties do not really intend to end the cooperation prematurely.

Alpine

Esteban Ocon has a contract until 2024, but Fernando Alonso's contract expires. The Spaniard is keen to stay in F1 and his performance is also a good reason to keep the two-time world champion. Alpine, however, has Oscar Piastri in its crosshairs. The Australian talent will have to find a seat in F1 by 2023 or the Alpine Academy will be in for a very painful time. Before Alonso's extension is announced, Alpine will want to be sure that Piastri has a seat.

Alfa Romeo

The surprising number six in the world championship has a frontrunner in Valtteri Bottas until 2025. Guanyu Zhou is bringing in a lot of Chinese money and sponsorship this year, but the question is whether his services will also be needed in 2023? Zhou's contract is expiring and his performance is not such that he has secured that spot for next year. It is therefore not surprising that there are many rumours about a new driver.

The main candidate is Theo Pourchaire. The Frenchman is part of the Sauber Academy and is currently second in the Formula 2 championship. If he can continue in that vein, you would say he deserves that spot. The names of Mick Schumacher and Oscar Piastri have also been mentioned, but the chances of them joining are slim.

AlphaTauri

With Pierre Gasly confirmed, Red Bull's sister team has the frontrunner and benchmark for young talent for 2023. The question is who will sit next to him. Yuki Tsunoda performed better in 2022, but a blunder like the one in Canada will not help his reputation. However, the Japanese driver is fortunate that there is no real pressure on him.

Although Red Bull has a mountain of talent driving in F2, none of them have really impressed so far. Liam Lawson and Juri Vips were the big favourites prior to the season, but they are not living up to their potential. Vips was even thrown out of the Red Bull programme after a video surfaced of him making a racist statement.

Jehan Daruvala is best on P3, but the 23-year-old driver from India does not appear to be a serious candidate for F1. F3 champion Dennis Hauger is. The Norwegian has found his form after a difficult start and thanks to two wins in Monaco and Baku, has climbed to fifth place in the standings. If he can keep this up, he may be able to put some pressure on Tsunoda. Red Bull also has the option of bringing back Alexander Albon, but with Gasly confirmed his services no longer seem necessary.

Aston Martin

Aston Martin is the subject of most rumours, although with Lance Stroll there is already a seat unthreatened. Aston Martin will never communicate this, but with his father, as the big boss Lance will never lose his seat. The departure of Sebastian Vettel is in the air. The German's contract is coming to an end and the four-time world champion has never made a secret of the fact that he only wants to stay in F1 if he has a competitive car. The AMR22 is not.

Mick Schumacher is the man most often associated with this seat. Aston Martin would like to influence the German market with a German driver in order to stimulate sales of its cars there. Schumacher is also rumoured to be a driver who would not make things too difficult for his son, according to Lawrence Stroll.

Looking at the German drivers, reserve driver Nico Hulkenberg is also an option. Retired for a few years now, but still involved with the team. Fernando Alonso's name was also mentioned if he were to leave Alpine, as was Oscar Piastri.

Haas

With Kevin Magnussen, Haas has already filled one seat in 2023, but the seat of the other driver is uncertain. Mick Schumacher is under pressure and no matter how much Guenther Steiner tries to say that relations are good, they are simply not. Schumacher is not linked to all sorts of other teams for nothing. His management has simply started to look for an alternative.

With the volatile performance of 2022, Haas is not getting one driver after another on the phone, but there are a few names that have been linked to the team. Antonio Giovinazzi, for example, would be a possible alternative within the Ferrari squad, but the question is to what extent Ferrari will want to loan out another junior since Schumacher is also part of that programme.

Haas could also look at the market itself to see what is feasible. Oscar Piastri is already a much-mentioned name, but Felipe Drugovich is also a possible candidate. As a Brazilian and leader in the F2 championship, he is an interesting target for Steiner, who is also always looking for a way to attract new sponsors.

Williams

The last team on the grid has yet to sign a driver for 2023. Albon will want to stay at Williams and it is likely that this will be the case. With Gasly confirmed, the Thai is no longer needed as a benchmark for talent at AlphaTauri, so the chances of Red Bull bringing him back are not very high. For Williams, keeping Albon is a no-brainer.

Nicholas Latifi seems to be in his final season with Williams. The Canadian has never been convincing at Grove and now that his bag of money is no longer needed with the new owners, the team will mainly want to find a competitive teammate for Albon. Nyck de Vries was linked to the team for a long time and even got a test in Barcelona. Since then, however, it has been quiet around De Vries and another name is frequently put forward.

Not De Vries, but Oscar Piastri is the top candidate to replace Latifi. The reigning F2 champion has the speed and Alpine needs to put the talent somewhere. The fact that Mercedes wants to supply one less customer with engines and the rumours that Williams wants to switch to Alpine/Renault engines only make the Australian's arrival even more certain.

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