These are intense days for the drivers and technicians market in F1. Mercedes and Williams are the market compass needles. Nico Rosberg’s flash-retirement has triggered a true driver-wager. The most listed name is surely that of the Finnish at williams, bottas, even if so far Mercedes stays tight-lipped. In Renault, instead, as a bolt from the blue, Frederic Vasseur has left his role as a Team Principal because of some discordance in the team management.
The world Champion Team has also to face the “getaway” of Paddy Lowe whose destination, Williams, would offer him the desired role of Team Principal (an official announcement still lacks). This operation could include the exchange with Bottas that should be substituted by the returning of Felipe Massa. The Brazilian driver would have taken some time, till January 30, to give a definite response.
Meanwhile, Toto Wolff, with the Manor under receivership for economic difficulties (it ended its championship in the eleventh place), has moved Pascal Wherlein to Sauber tearing off Felipe Nasr’s seat. (Esteban Ocon will dress the Force India-Mercedes colors instead of Nico Hulkenberg who went to Renault).
With this scenario, they vanish the chances of seeing Antonio Giovinazzi (already promoted as a third Ferrari driver at the end of the year after his good GP2 season) in track with the color of the Swiss team motorized by Ferrari, for a first apprenticeship season. If so, it would be a great pity. It would be a small defeat for the Italian motor sports. Ferrari should help its compatriots to find a seat in a minor team so to make them gain a bit of experience in grand prix. It would be amazing to have again an Italian driver in F1, also protagonist during the Italian grand Prix.
Everything could be questioned if Massa gives up to the offering of Williams. At that point, Wehrlein will find a place in Grove, and Hinwil’s doors could open for Giovinazzi.