The British Racing team celebrates its 40 years in the sport at a weird crossroad. With the Brazilian Driver, Filipe Massa stepping out of the F1 cockpit for the final time, the 9-time Constructor Champion winning team are spoilt for choice when it comes to drivers.
With Lance Stroll reportedly paying up in excess of $30m for his seat with the F1 team, the other seat, vacated by Filipe Massa is also to be rumoured to be gifted to the Driver who is financially viable, whether it be via the driver himself or any sponsors associated with him.
Step in 3 drivers who offer varied options when it comes down to Driver performance as well as financial viability who are most likely to take the seat.
1. Robert Kubica
It was meant to be the fairytale return for the Polish driver Robert Kubica as he looked to step back into the Formula 1 circuit after the horrific incident during Rally Racing which nearly severed his arm.
It was expected that Kubica will be widely greeted with a warm welcome into the F1 lineup by his colleagues and fans alike, thereby making Williams a more popular racing team overall. However, Kubica’s return has received mixed reception when it came down to either as some fans were disappointed that Kubica was given a chance over some young talented drivers like Kvyat and Wehrlein while some lauded his bravery to embrace the pinnacle of motorsport and the team to give a second chance to one of the most talented drivers currently in contention of the seat.
In regards to Kubica, Sebastian Vettel said,”For him, it would be a nice story, but on the other hand it would be unfortunate for younger drivers who would also like that cockpit.” And a lot of fans felt the same as the 4 time World Champion on the matter.
Recent developments have stated that Nico Rosberg, the former World Champion is ready to back Kubica’s bid to racing in Formula 1 with the German ready to invest about $8m to buy the drive for the Polish Driver in the racing team.
2. Sergey Sirotkin
The Formula 2 driver Sergey Sirotkin, who has been a development driver for Renault and Sauber is widely tipped to be in contention for the other seat in the Williams team. With Boris Rotenberg, a Russian Billionaire declaring his support to put Sirotkin on the grid, it’s expected that Williams will gain about £11.2m from the deal via the billionaire who is prepared to do “Whatever it takes” to get Sirotkin the seat at Williams.
Sirotkin, who recently turned 22 has also cleared the Williams requirement of having at least 1 driver above the age of 21 to be driving under the banner of their team.
3. Daniil Kvyat
The 23-year-old Russian driver has been experiencing a somewhat downward spiral since the controversial crash against Vettel some 2 years ago. While he had been demoted from Red Bull Racing to their B team Scuderia Torro Rosso, this time, the news seems to be even worse for him. With Torro Rosso going with Pierre Gasly and Brendon Hartley for next season, Kvyat finds himself without a Formula 1 team for the first time since he graduated from Red Bull drivers’ programme.
It’s unclear how much sponsorship Kvyat will bring to the team, however, it is widely acknowledged that Kvyat will be the safest bet for the team with questions over Kubica’s physical limitations and the lack of F1 experience wih Sirotkin.
Who else do you think should be in contention? Paul Di Resta? Oliver Rowland?