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Let's talk F1 2016 Driver/Team Changes!


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So, as many of you F1 fans will know, this is the time of the season where contract and driver placements rumours go flying! I'd just like to clarify the existing ones that will already know for CERTAIN, and then talk more about the speculative driver changes that have not been confirmed/up for debate :smile: 

So, we have (and correct me if I'm wrong, of course.) :-
Mercedes: Hamilton and Rosberg are confirmed to have both signed again for at least another year.
Ferrari: Vettel and Raikkonen.
Williams: Massa and Bottas
Red Bull : Ricciardo and Kvyat
Force India: Hulkenberg and Perez
Lotus/Renault: Only Maldonado (*sigh*) has been confirmed, and Renault are rumoured to buy Lotus before the beginning of the 2016 season.
Toro Rosso: Verstappen. Sainz hasn't had an update on any movement changes as of late, but I suspect Toro Rosso's young drivers 2 year scheme they kind of have, he will probably stay on.
Sauber: Both Ericsson and Nasr are both confirmed.
Mclaren: Alonso and Button have signed up for another season. Button rumoured to be sounding slightly more fed up with the lack of competition within the team, though.
Marussia: No deals have been confirmed for either driver yet.
Haas: Grosjean has signed up for the new "Ferrari baby brother team" as I have heard a few commentators call it.

Other news - Red Bull's having a messy divorce with their engine supplier (Renault) and Mercedes have flat out refused to give them their engines, as they want to supply Marussia as a "Feeder team" and hopefully make them more competitive in the field, and will be rumoured to be named "Manor Mercedes"

- So! Who do you think will take the places of the unannounced driver seats? Lotus/Renault are confirmed to be looking for French drivers and wanted Grosjean but he already signed for Haas. Haas are looking for American GP2 drivers for their other seat, and were looking at Alexander Rossi, but is currently driving for Marussia.
Speculation that Lotus/Renault might sign Lotus' current test driver, British Jolyon Palmer or French Jean-Eric Vergne or the Mexican Esteban Gutiérrez or even French Esteban Ocon for the currently vacant seat next to Maldonado. It is more than likely they will sign one of the two French drivers from that speculative list as that is what they want, since Renault is French, after all.
Personally I have not heard any news on Manor Marussia/Mercedes, But I think they will proably sign the young German Mercedes DTM, (German Touring Car Masters) driver, Pascal Wehrlein as Driver no. 1, and (as I have heard from a number of only slightly reliable sources) - Rio Haryanto the Indonesian driver, or they may just stick with Alexander Rossi, what with being an experienced GP2 driver and all.

But, after all that is said and done, who is going to drive alongside Grosjean? (who I think personally is extremely underrated, and my favourite F1 racing driver). Many are saying Esteban Gutiérrez, which I think would probably be a good fit.

So, who do you lot think will be driving in these currently 5 vacant seats? Who do you think would be a good fit? Who are you hoping for?

Anyhow, I'm sure all will be revealed tantalisingly soon! :wink:


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Jolyon Palmer in the second  Lotus/Renault seat. Yes I know thats a long shot. 
I think Wehrlein will be in the Manor along with Rossi

As for Haas, Gutierrez should be in that seat. He is a Ferrari test driver after all.
And one last thing

 @fIsince08 move this to the 'world of motorsport' forum topic
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Guessing that Red Bull will remain in F1 and with Renault-engines. If they don't, it changes the game.

But assuming it goes as expected, I see Palmer at Renault, Ocon and Wehrlein for Manor, Sainz for another season at Toro Rosso since Gasly isn't doing much in GP2 and Gutierrez at Haas. I also wouldn't be surprised if Wehrlein ended up replacing Hülkenberg at Force India somewhere in 2016.
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Manor might get Weherlin thanks to Mercedes engines. The other seat will probably go to someone with money or maybe Rossi.

Lotus could go a lot of ways. If Renault buy them, I expect Vergne will come back... although I'm not sure why other than he's French, I don't necessarily think he's that great. If the buyout is something more like a transitional year, or Lotus stays, then Ocon or Palmer is probably what they'll do to have two pay drivers for the year.

Haas we should be finding out in two weeks, I expect it'll be Gutierrez because of the Ferrari connection (just out of curiosity, who else is still a Ferrari Academy driver?). The only other option is Magnussen, which has been rumor since McLaren have seemingly dumped him. Although a move to another series is far more likely but he would be a good choice (and probably better than Gutierrez) for Haas.
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  • 1 month later...
coolieboy said:
I'm really looking forward to next season.  Especially the liveries. Can't wait to see what Haas F1 and Aston Martin racing will look like. 
Agreed. I just hope Haas isn't going for predominantely black, with red, because McLaren has that too. Haas is American, so they should have an impressive livery.

Also, Aston Martin has a blue/gold thing rumored. Someone should bring light-blue back btw.
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Yeah, I'd say it's pretty likely. However, I think that letter is more of an offer rather than confirmation of a deal, but I would be surprised if Manor don't take him. Also for once (apparently) this has come from a pretty reliable source.

While once again it sucks that a pay driver gets a seat over someone more deserving, that's gonna be good for the Malaysian and Singapore GP's I expect. He's got a huge following in Indonesia and I wouldn't be surprised to see a lot of his fans go to these races to support him. Also those are back to back races this year now I believe.
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