Overview: Formula 1 silly season rumbles on

Overview: Formula 1 silly season rumbles on

18 August 2017 – While the Formula 1 community has recharged its batteries over the summer break, the silly season has rumbled on in the background. GPUpdate.net provides an overview of the situation and speculation.

Mercedes
Lewis Hamilton is contracted through to the end of 2018, having signed a three-year extension in 2015. Valtteri Bottas, meanwhile, is on a one-year deal, and has impressed with his speed and application since moving from Williams to replace Nico Rosberg. Mercedes boss Toto Wolff said he would spend the summer break considering options, but that keeping Bottas is "almost a no-brainer".

Ferrari
Sebastian Vettel is in the final season of a three-year deal with Ferrari, and has repeatedly insisted he is in "no rush" to settle his future, with focus on the fight against Mercedes. Ferrari Chairman Sergio Marchionne has said there is a "better than 50 per cent" chance of Vettel and Kimi Räikkönen being retained, having hinted at an announcement at the team's home event next month.

Red Bull
As per the leading teams, Red Bull has both of its drivers locked down for 2018, with Daniel Ricciardo and Max Verstappen contracted. Red Bull has reiterated that, unlike for Vettel, there are no performance-based get-out clauses for either Ricciardo or Verstappen. Red Bull has Toro Rosso racer Carlos Sainz Jr. as a back-up in the highly unlikely event that something does change.

Force India
Impressive Mercedes-backed young gun Esteban Ocon is on a multi-year deal and therefore staying, while Sergio Pérez has intimated that he wants his future sorted when Formula 1 returns from its summer break. Pérez was previously linked with Renault, which is rebuilding after returning to the sport as a full works team, but is expected to remain with Force India for a fifth season.

Williams
Another team which is likely to field an unchanged line-up. Williams benefits substantially from the financial might behind rookie Lance Stroll, and has been through the worst with the young Canadian, in terms of his experience/pace. Felipe Massa has been tipped to stay, though Williams was open to the prospect of Paul di Resta making a comeback, after his competent stand-in performance in Hungary.

McLaren
Will he, won't he? Fernando Alonso has repeatedly emphasised he will decide his future in September or October, dependent on McLaren's prospects for 2018. As it stands, irrespective of engine supplier, Alonso has few options elsewhere, with Mercedes, Ferrari and Red Bull all uninterested. In F1 terms, it's McLaren or bust. Stoffel Vandoorne will stay. McLaren still has Jenson Button under contract for 2018, with youngsters Nyck de Vries and Lando Norris also on its books.

Toro Rosso
Carlos Sainz Jr. commented in Austria that it was "unlikely" he would stay with Toro Rosso for 2018, only to be admonished by senior Red Bull figures. With graduation to a top seat unlikely, Sainz Jr. will stay, unless Renault is inclined to buy out his contract – rumoured to be at the $8 million mark. Red Bull has hinted that Daniil Kvyat will stay – and the Russian wants to – but should the line-up change, Pierre Gasly would be slotted into the vacant seat.

Haas
The saga over Esteban Gutiérrez's future was a talking point for months last year, before the Mexican eventually lost his seat, but this season Haas has ensured that it will not be part of the rumour mill, already confirming that it will continue to field Romain Grosjean and Kevin Magnussen into 2018, with both drivers scoring points.

Renault
Nico Hülkenberg will stay, but intrigue over the second seat remains a primary talking point. Robert Kubica's testing comeback has ignited huge interest, but the Pole insisted he is staying "very, very realistic", while Renault has been coy over the subject. Kubica/Renault for 2018 is the match the majority want to see; if not, Renault has the option to buy Sainz Jr.'s services, having touted the youngster 12 months ago. Renault also has Oliver Rowland, Sergey Sirotkin and Nicholas Latifi on its books. Pérez, having come very close to a 2016 drive, is an outside possibility.

Sauber
Sauber's planned Honda collaboration has been ditched in favour of a renewed, strengthened partnership with Ferrari. Marchionne has suggested Sauber could become a Ferrari junior squad and runaway F2 title leader Charles Leclerc has been strongly linked with the minnow. Antonio Giovinazzi, following his two-race spell, is also an option; Marcus Ericsson, with strong connections to Sauber, is expected to stay, but by no means a certainty.

related

Comments

Latest News
Full
Compact

  1. Sunday 24 September 2017

  2. Eriksson wins, Norris misses title chance 16:46

    Eriksson wins, Norris misses title chance

    Joel Eriksson survived contact with Lando Norris to secure victory in the final race of the weekend at the Red Bull Ring, while…

    F3
  3. 15:22

    Latest MotoGP photos: Sunday at Aragón

    MotoGP
  4. Márquez was 'fighting against bike' in race 15:21

    Márquez was 'fighting against bike' in race

    Marc Márquez says he was "fighting against the bike" over the course of the Aragón Grand Prix after recording his fifth…

    MotoGP
  5. 14:23

    In full: Aragón Grand Prix race results

    MotoGP
  6. Márquez fights back for Aragón victory 13:46

    Márquez fights back for Aragón victory

    Marc Márquez extended his title lead with his fifth victory of the season at the Aragón Grand Prix as he headed team-mate Dani…

    MotoGP
  7. 12:00

    Starting grid for the Aragón Grand Prix

    MotoGP
  8. Ducati: Rear tyre choice crucial for race 11:02

    Ducati: Rear tyre choice crucial for race

    Ducati pair Jorge Lorenzo and Andrea Dovizioso believe rear tyre choice will be critical to the manufacturer's prospects of…

    MotoGP
  9. Eriksson wins, Norris edges towards title 10:46

    Eriksson wins, Norris edges towards title

    Motopark's Joel Eriksson ended his victory drought at the Red Bull Ring while McLaren-backed youngster Lando Norris edged closer…

    F3
  10. Flashback: Malaysia's dramatic 2016 race 10:06

    Flashback: Malaysia's dramatic 2016 race

    Last weekend's Singapore Grand Prix was a potentially season-defining race, with Lewis Hamilton winning after Sebastian Vettel's…

    F1
  11. Formula 1 tweaks jump start regulations 09:14

    Formula 1 tweaks jump start regulations

    The FIA has tightened next year's Sporting Regulations regarding jump starts in Formula 1, raising the possibility of penalties…

    F1
  12. Gasly closes on Ishiura with Sugo podium 08:38

    Gasly closes on Ishiura with Sugo podium

    Red Bull junior driver Pierre Gasly closed the gap to Super Formula title leader Hiroaki Ishiura to just half a point, after…

    SF
  13. Video: Toto Wolff tackles the Nürburgring 05:42

    Video: Toto Wolff tackles the Nürburgring

    Watch as Mercedes boss Toto Wolff tackles the Nürburgring in a Mercedes-Benz 190 E 2.5-16 Evolution II during the Touring Cars…

    F1
  14. Saturday 23 September 2017

  15. 17:04

    Latest MotoGP photos: Saturday at Aragón

    MotoGP
  16. Márquez 'pushed too much' in pole pursuit 17:02

    Márquez 'pushed too much' in pole pursuit

    Repsol Honda rider Marc Márquez accepted that he "pushed too much" during the closing stages of qualifying for the Aragón…

    MotoGP
  17. Rossi labels front row spot 'big surprise' 14:46

    Rossi labels front row spot 'big surprise'

    Valentino Rossi labelled his front-row grid spot for the Aragón Grand Prix as a "big surprise" after making an…

    MotoGP
  18. 14:07

    Aragón Grand Prix: Qualifying 2 results

    MotoGP
  19. Viñales takes Aragón pole, Rossi third 14:04

    Viñales takes Aragón pole, Rossi third

    Movistar Yamaha's Maverick Viñales made it back-to-back pole positions during a thrilling qualifying session for the Aragón…

    MotoGP
  20. MotoGP confirms 2018 pre-season schedule 12:46

    MotoGP confirms 2018 pre-season schedule

    MotoGP organisers have confirmed the championship's pre-season test dates and venues for the 2018 campaign. As per usual, the…

    MotoGP
  21. F1 relaxes rules over current cars for demos 11:12

    F1 relaxes rules over current cars for demos

    Formula 1's Sporting Regulations have been relaxed in order to allow current-spec cars to be run at any demonstration events…

    F1
  22. 10:38

    Latest F3 photos: Saturday at Spielberg

    F3
  23. Ilott converts pole into victory in Austria 10:36

    Ilott converts pole into victory in Austria

    Prema's Callum Ilott took his fifth victory of the European Formula 3 season with a lights-to-flag drive in the opening race of…

    F3
  24. 10:00

    Aragón Grand Prix: Full Practice 3 results

    MotoGP
  25. Márquez heads FP3 as Rossi makes Q2 09:59

    Márquez heads FP3 as Rossi makes Q2

    Reigning World Champion Marc Márquez led the way as all six manufacturers had a representative inside the top 10 during the…

    MotoGP
  26. Palmer: Points a weight off my shoulders 08:58

    Palmer: Points a weight off my shoulders

    Renault's Jolyon Palmer says scoring points in Singapore was a "weight off the shoulders" and feels he can tackle the remaining…

    F1
  27. Video: Ralf Schumacher's Formula 4 team 05:48

    Video: Ralf Schumacher's Formula 4 team

    Find out more about the US Racing ADAC Formula 4 team, run by ex-Formula 1 driver Ralf Schumacher and former Mercedes DTM boss…

    Misc
  28. Friday 22 September 2017

  29. 16:12

    Follow us on Instagram for the best photos!

    F1
  30. Video: IndyCar's new 2018 brake package 16:02

    Video: IndyCar's new 2018 brake package

    IndyCar technical guru Jon Beekhuis explains the technical advancements for the brake package on the series' 2018 car that will…

    Indy
  31. Formula 1 developing exhaust microphone 14:43

    Formula 1 developing exhaust microphone

    Formula 1 is developing a microphone that can be fitted to a car's exhaust to provide a "true amplification" of sound in the…

    F1
  32. 14:06

    Latest MotoGP photos: Friday at Aragón

    MotoGP
  33. 14:00

    Aragón Grand Prix: Full Practice 2 results

    MotoGP
  34. Pedrosa heads Lorenzo in second practice 13:58

    Pedrosa heads Lorenzo in second practice

    Honda rider Dani Pedrosa topped the timesheets during second practice for Aragón Grand Prix, ahead of Ducati's Jorge Lorenzo…

    MotoGP
  35. Yamaha set to offer van der Mark test run 13:47

    Yamaha set to offer van der Mark test run

    Yamaha is set to offer Michael van der Mark a test on its MotoGP bike, with the Dutchman's planned debut at the Aragón Grand…

    MotoGP
  36. Red Bull adds four karters to Junior Team 12:22

    Red Bull adds four karters to Junior Team

    Red Bull has added four karters to its Junior Team line-up for the 2018 season. OK World Championship karter Dennis Haugar…

    Misc
  37. F1 to make classic race available online 12:01

    F1 to make classic race available online

    Formula 1's official website will make a classic Malaysian Grand Prix available online for fans to watch later this month, as…

    F1
  38. Video: Jaguar presents new car, new driver 10:48

    Video: Jaguar presents new car, new driver

    Jaguar introduces its new car and new driver for Formula E's fourth season, with inaugural series champion Nelson Piquet Jr.…

    FE
  39. 09:46

    Aragón Grand Prix: Full Practice 1 results

    MotoGP
  40. Márquez fastest as Rossi returns at Aragón 09:44

    Márquez fastest as Rossi returns at Aragón

    Marc Márquez topped a wet opening practice session for the Aragón Grand Prix, as Valentino Rossi returned to action following…

    MotoGP
  41. China, Bahrain could swap places on roster 08:39

    China, Bahrain could swap places on roster

    Formula 1 commercial chief Sean Bratches is "incredibly optimistic" that China will remain on the calendar next season, though…

    F1
  42. Video: F1 pit-stop in the dark - making of 05:36

    Video: F1 pit-stop in the dark - making of

    Ahead of the Singapore Grand Prix, Mercedes team partner EPSON challenged mechanics to complete a pit-stop in the dark. Go…

    F1
  43. Thursday 21 September 2017

  44. FIA amends Super Licence points for 2018 19:34

    FIA amends Super Licence points for 2018

    The FIA has restructured the Super Licence points system for 2018, with several championships having their allocation reduced…

    F1
more news