Williams dismisses Latifi, and F1 awaits next announcement to define grid – 23/09/2022

Williams dismisses Latifi, and F1 awaits next announcement to define grid – 23/09/2022
Williams dismisses Latifi, and F1 awaits next announcement to define grid – 23/09/2022

Williams has moved the missing piece on the F1 driver market chessboard. He announced the departure of Latifi, making official the fourth open spot on the 2023 grid.

In a statement on Friday, the English team said it would not renew the contract with the Canadian driver, who has been there since 2020, and thanked him for the services provided. “Nicholas has always had a positive attitude towards his colleagues and is respected by everyone. We wish him all the luck in the world, whether in or out of the cockpit,” said Capito, the team principal.

As far as F1 is concerned, it will probably be outside the cockpit. For all the fortune of his father, a food industry mogul, Latifi is not of interest to any other team on the grid.

Understandable. In three seasons, I didn’t say what it came to. There were 55 GPs and only 7 points. This year, he is the only driver to compete in all GPs and not score. The final blow to Williams’ decision came in Italy 12 days ago: he was overtaken by De Vries, who had never raced in F1.

It’s that old story… Money can buy you a seat in F1. Staying is another thing. When Latifi arrived there in 2020, the team was run by the Williams family and it was in the hole. Soon after, it was sold to Dorilton Capital, an investment fund. Now, with the balance in balance, he tried to get rid of the backrest.

(Latifi, remember, was runner-up in Formula 2 in 2019, behind De Vries. Yes, the world turns…)

F1 now expects what is in the third paragraph of the announcement. “Williams will reveal their duo soon,” reads the statement, which further confirmed Albon “for 2023 and beyond.”

There are openings at Alpine, Haas, Alfa Romeo.

The next announcement by Williams or Alpine will be enough to draw the grid.

The most quoted for the vacancy in the English team, as I wrote here at the beginning of the week, is Sargeant. He doesn’t draw sighs: he is third in Formula 2 and needs to finish the championship in the top five to get the super license. But he carries something that has become valuable to F1: the little American flag sewn into the belt of his suit.

Logan Sargeant, American driver who can race for Williams in 2023

Image: Williams

De Vries can also paint there, not least because of his long relationship with Mercedes. But in recent days, Red Bull has invested in the Dutchman. Wants to take him to partner Tsunoda at AlphaTauri, which would free up Gasly to race at Alpine.

Running out of the loop is Schumacher, with strained relations with Haas.

If Williams announces Sargeant, the puzzle will be solved — Alfa Romeo will likely renew with Zhou, and Haas will go with Schumacher or Hulkenberg, the eternal.

If Alpine announces Gasly or if AlphaTauri confirms De Vries, the same will happen: pieces fitted, puzzle completed.

Finally, if there is a turnaround and Williams announces De Vries, Alpine will have a big problem: it will have to look for a driver in the market. Ricciardo is madly rooting for this scenario.

The article is in Portuguese

Tags: Williams dismisses Latifi awaits announcement define grid

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