Year after year, the Lewis Hamilton to Ferrari rumor made its rounds. Except this time, the seven-time Formula 1 world champion and winningest driver in the history of the sport is actually set to make the move to the sport's most iconic and successful team.
Hamilton is set to join Charles Leclerc and replace Carlos Sainz Jr. at the Italian team in 2025, bringing an end to a 12-year run with Mercedes. Where will Sainz end up?
Here are five possibilities.
No. 1 - Mercedes
The obvious (yet not necessarily most likely) option for Carlos Sainz Jr. in 2025 is Mercedes, which would effectively amount to a straight-up seat swap with Lewis Hamilton.
Hamilton had been speaking with Ferrari for quite some time before the news was made official, and Sainz himself had said that he had been aware that he was going to replaced by the 103-time race winner for several weeks.
Yet Mercedes only reportedly found out the day before the announcement was made. Now they have a seat available, and Sainz finds himself without one. Should they pair arguably the most under-the-radar driver on the grid with George Russell for 2025 and beyond?
There are quite a few other possibilities for Mercedes, and while the Hamilton news may have caught them off guard, it's not like they need to make up their mind tomorrow; we're talking about the 2025 season, and the 2024 season hasn't even started yet. Sainz should have plenty of other options as well.