Formula 1: Could Ferrari bail on their driver duo?

Carlos Sainz Jr. and Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Formula 1 (Photo by Peter J Fox/Getty Images)
Carlos Sainz Jr. and Charles Leclerc, Ferrari, Formula 1 (Photo by Peter J Fox/Getty Images) /

As Ferrari are in the midst of a rough start to their Formula 1 season, is it possible they consider bailing on their current driver duo?

Three races into the 2023 Formula 1 season, many are shocked at Ferrari’s rough start to the year. There seems to be quite a significant dropoff from where they were at this time last season.

The struggles could raise concerns over Ferrari’s driver duo of Charles Leclerc and Carlos Sainz Jr. Both drivers are under contract until the end of the 2024 season. However, Ferrari could choose to change things up, given their aspirations of success.

Although we have seen this current duo be successful both individually and for the team, it may not be enough to deliver on Ferrari’s expectations. This time last season, Ferrari were leading both the driver and constructor championships.

Currently, they sit fourth in the constructor standings, well behind the top three teams of Red Bull, Aston Martin, and Mercedes.

Ferrari’s car has some clear flaws this season, and upgrades will be implemented over the next couple of races. Their progress will be monitored very carefully over that time for both the team and the drivers individually. The general expectation is that their performance will improve and they will begin to compete for podiums once again.

Additionally, despite this being unpopular, Ferrari should keep a rather close eye on Charles Leclerc.

As talented as the 25-year-old is, his “mistakes” on the track have been costing the team season after season. During his tenure at Ferrari, he has had a habit of pushing the car to the very limit and having it result in a DNF. It is something that has occurred fairly regularly since the start of the 2022 season.

Obviously, Ferrari do not want to be known for having consistent mishaps, especially since they were a powerhouse on the grid not too long ago. With that being said, if things do not improve, Leclerc could be the first to go before his contract expires with the team.

Now, if Ferrari were to replace Leclerc after this season, the pickings are fairly slim to choose from. But there is one name that would make sense and is seemingly realistic: Lando Norris.

His situation at McLaren this season has been rather rough, and he is another young driver who has plenty of talent. While this is contingent on Ferrari’s struggles continuing until the end of the season, it is a move that should not be out of the question.

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As things currently stand, Ferrari will be focused on gradually implementing upgrades to the SF-23. It will be up to Leclerc and Sainz to pull this team back up and hopefully into the mix for second or third place in in the constructor championship.