Sainz to replace Vettel at Ferrari, McLaren rope in Ricciardo
Carlos Sainz will join Ferrari for the 2021 Formula 1 season to replace Sebastian Vettel after signing a two-year deal with the side. On a busy day for F1, it was also announced that Daniel Ricciardo will race for McLaren alongside Lando Norris in 2021. Ricciardo switched Renault for McLaren after Sainz was signed by Ferrari. Here's more.
The 25-year-old Sainz will join Charles Leclerc in a rare youthful Ferrari line-up after what will be two years at McLaren. He had an impressive 2019 campaign, when the team's fortunes improved and his stock also rose to prominence. Sainz finished sixth in the standings last year after collecting 96 points and earning a podium berth.
"I am very happy that I will be driving for Scuderia Ferrari in 2021 and I'm excited about my future with the team," said Sainz.
Ferrari boss Mattia Binotto said: "We've embarked on a new cycle with the aim of getting back to the top in Formula 1. It will be a long journey, not without its difficulties, especially given the current financial and regulatory situation, which is undergoing a sudden change and will require this challenge to be tackled in a different way to the recent past."
"We believe that a driver pairing with the talent and personality of Charles and Carlos, the youngest in the past 50 years of the Scuderia, will be the best possible combination to help us reach the goals we have set ourselves," Binotto said.
Meanwhile, Ricciardo, who is a seven-time race winner, will take Sainz's place at a re-emerging McLaren team. McLaren are set to have Mercedes engines from 2021 onwards. "Signing Daniel is another step forward in our long-term plan and will bring an exciting new dimension to the team, alongside Lando," said McLaren CEO Zak Brown. The former Red Bull driver finished ninth last season.
I am so grateful for my time with @renaultf1team and the way I was accepted into the team. But we aren’t done and I can’t wait to get back on the grid this year. My next chapter isn’t here yet, so let’s finish this one strong. Merci pic.twitter.com/YFfzbwrgD7— Daniel Ricciardo (@danielricciardo) May 14, 2020
Earlier, it was reported that Sebastian Vettel will leave Ferrari at the end of the year after contract talks between the two broke down with no agreement. It's all set to end a six-year spell for Vettel at Ferrari. Vettel had joined Ferrari in 2015 and hoped of winning the title with them. However, he was highly inconsistent during his spell here.
It has been reported that Ferrari offered Vettel a vastly reduced salary and a shorter contract than he desired. In 2017 and 2018, Ferrari had a faster car but mistakes cost the side. That's where the trust broke down. With Charles Leclerc coming in last year and outwitting Vettel across departments, the latter lost his credibility as the number one. Vettel fell from grace.