Connect with us

2016 F1

F1 2016 grid shaping up as silly season nears end



F1 2016 grid shaping up as silly season nears end

F1 2016 grid shaping up as silly season nears end

As the ‘silly season’ nears its end, the 2016 grid is now shaping up.

With Kimi Raikkonen all signed up again, Ferrari will field an unchanged lineup next year, as will Mercedes, Sauber and probably the two Red Bull teams.

Fernando Alonso is contractually locked in at McLaren-Honda, and sources report that the Honda-powered team also wants to keep Jenson Button, but perhaps only if he lowers his retainer.

When asked at Monza about the threat posed by McLaren juniors Kevin Magnussen and Stoffel Vandoorne, Button shut down the discussion immediately, insisting “I have nothing to say.”

Earlier, Valtteri Bottas had appeared a shoo-in for a Ferrari seat, but Williams ultimately refused to sell his 2016 deal to the Maranello team.

“I don’t think you can put a price on someone like Valtteri,” said Claire Williams on Thursday, after the Grove team also announced that Felipe Massa is staying.

Bottas, however, may become available again for 2017.

“It’s maybe one year or two. Or five or ten,” he laughed to the Finnish broadcaster MTV, when asked to name the duration of his latest tenure at Williams.

“It will become clear at some point,” the Finn smiled again.

Mika Salo, a former F1 driver, surmised that when the Ferrari door closed, Bottas essentially had nowhere else to go.

Lotus, for example, could become the Renault works team for 2016, but it appears Romain Grosjean is keeping his seat there, while Pastor Maldonado has a firm contract.

If it is deemed that Maldonado’s PDVSA millions do not mesh with the presumably Total-sponsored Renault, he may be in the running to switch to Force India.

The Silverstone based team has already locked down Nico Hulkenberg for the next two years, even though he had been linked with the new Ferrari-linked Haas team.

“Why should he have taken the risk with a new team if he already sits in a good car?” former driver Marc Surer, now a pundit for German television Sky, said on Thursday.

“Force India has made progress and should be good here at Monza, so I think Hulkenberg has made a good decision,” he added.

The other seat at Force India, however, remains unconfirmed, even though Sergio Perez’s Mexican backers reportedly take EUR 20 million to the team per year.

Maldonado’s backing, on the other hand, is estimated at $50 million a year.

But Perez said at Monza that his Force India deal could be all wrapped up by Singapore, telling reporters: “As you know, I have a group of sponsors and we’re trying to make the announcement all together.

“So from that respect it’s all clear.”

Maldonado, therefore, is expecting to stay at Enstone, whether the cars are coloured black or yellow — and even though it is rumoured Lotus’ serious financial strife has been made even worse by PDVSA holding back a payment.

“That’s totally false,” he said at Monza.

“We (the driver and his sponsors) have a contract until the end of next season so it should be ok whether Renault comes or not,” Maldonado added. (GMM)


Latest Results

Latest F1 News

2018 F16 hours ago

Qualifying Analysis: 2018 F1 German Grand Prix

24SharesSebastian Vettel smashed the track record, to claim his maiden pole at the Hockenheim circuit, which is a half an...

2018 F16 hours ago

Ferrari can get first place tomorrow – Vettel

Ferrari qualified in pole position for tomorrow’s German Grand Prix, courtesy of Sebastian Vettel. His team-mate Kimi Raikkonen will start...

2018 F16 hours ago

McLaren bring bigger upgrades to next few races – Alonso

Heavy rain throughout the morning meant neither driver posted a time in the final practice session at Hockenheim. Both drivers...

2018 F18 hours ago

Hamilton reveals Hockenheimring bump didn’t cause car failure

Troubled Lewis Hamilton forced out in the first qualifying session when his car broke down with a heat soak damage....

2018 F110 hours ago

Hamilton Out of German GP Qualifying

1ShareChampionship contender Lewis Hamilton disappointed again with another dark shadows roll over his championship hopes at the German GP after...

2018 F112 hours ago

Hamilton agrees £80m deal with Mercedes until 2020 F1

3Shares  Four-time F1 world champion Lewis Hamilton agreed a new contract with Mercedes this week, promising his future to the...

2018 F113 hours ago

Practice 3 Results: German Grand Prix

151Shares2018 German Grand Prix Practice 3 Results (FP3): Third free practice results and Timings (FP3) for the eleventh round of...

2018 F114 hours ago

Leclerc ready to jump at Ferrari race seat for 2019 F1

1ShareCharles Leclerc says he will not turn down the opportunity to drive for Ferrari in 2019. Some believe the Monaco-born...

2018 F116 hours ago

Lance Stroll not denying Force India move for 2019 F1

1ShareLance Stroll is being linked with a move to Force India. The Canadian has sounded frustrated with Williams’ situation recently,...

2018 F117 hours ago

Red Bull’s title chances dwindling – Verstappen

1ShareMax Verstappen admits Red Bull has taken a step backwards in its outside bid for the 2018 title. And he...

Most Popular is not affiliated with Formula 1, Formula One Management, Formula One Administration, Formula One Licensing BV, Formula One World Championship Ltd or any other organization or entity associated with the official Formula One governing organizations or their shareholders. Copyrighted material used under Fair Use/Fair Comment.

We could use the following leading F1 news sources for stories: SkyF1, BBC F1, Autosport, ESPN F1, FIA Media Center, MotorSport, JamesAllen and others leading authors blog.

All Rights Reserved © 2017 Prime Sport Media