Red Bull to supply Ferrari replacement for Raikkonen


Whilst Pirelli’s failure to deliver on their tyre brief once again robbed F1 fans of a truly exciting race, but given the current winds in the Red Bull family, speculation has again increased that they will be the one’s supplying Ferrari with a replacement for Kimi Raikkonen at the end of this season.

Christian Horner though has repeatedly made clear this year, that Daniel Ricciardo going nowhere in 2017 and again was catagoric about the RBR’s future driver line up when questioned by in Montreal.

“Q: Press speculation has suggested Daniel’s contract could come to an end this season, prompting more rumours of a potential Ferrari move…

CH: …wrong, it does not come to an end this season,” Horner insisted.

“Q: Does that mean you will race with the same driver line-up in 2017?

CH: Yes. But not just 2017!”

Given that Max Verstappen is now ignoring team orders from the Red Bull Racing pit wall as he refused to allow Daniel Ricciardo past during the 2016 Canadian GP; and that he did so with impunity, then it would appear the line-up Horner refers to will be Ricciardo and Verstappen.

That said, Red Bull’s Aussie driver has been highly frustrated with the team in recent weeks, pretty much costing him two wins whilst handing one to his rookie understudy. Many F1 observers see Max’s Kudos on the rise whilst Daniel Ricciardo’s is waning somewhat despite him out qualifying his young team mate in the three race weekends they’ve shared the same garage.

So is Daniel Ricciardo Ferrari’s target to replace Kimi Raikkonen next year after what will surely be his last season in Formula One?

Despite what Christian Horner claims, Daniel Ricciardo may see the writing on the wall for him at Red Bull Racing because of a certain Max Verstappen. The Dutch youngster is the F1 media darling at present and even when he ‘totals’ his precious RB12, the recriminations appear to be few, if there are any at all.

Max is portraying ‘young’ Vettel-esque characteristics which greatly endeared the German to his factory based servants. At times the Red Bull Racing employees would discuss Vettel with utter devotion, worship and exaltation – Seb could do no wrong and Webber was perceived as the necessary evil within.

The question is does Danny R really want to fight this kind of internal popularity contest? So his eyes may well be firmly set on Ferrari – hence the repeated questions arising from the F1 media.

However, we must remember Ferrari tradition is to have a number one and number two driver and whilst Vettel and Raikkonen claim this is not the case with them, when push comes to shove Maranello will lump all its efforts behind the German who has positioned himself into a place of driver dominance. So, how would Vettel respond to the Scuderia considering the recruitment of his old team mate, the ‘honey badger’?

After all, it could be argued Ricciardo’s comprehensive defeat of Vettel in their year together at RBR chased the German out of his family home and into the arms of the Red Team. Sebastian is unlikely to want to relive those moments of his career over again and would surely oppose a Ricciardo to Ferrari plan.

This leaves the age old question of who would Ferrari consider? Maranello don’t do rookies and apart from Romain Grosjean, there’s no one driving for a Ferrari customer team who could be deemed worthy of such a high calling.

Well according to Alain Prost, the man who many believed to have been passed over in recent weeks is the one who should be set to join Maranello as a replacement for Raikkonen.

Carlos Sainz had less than an inspiring Saturday in Montreal which culminated on him dumping his Toro Rosso into the wall of champions in Q2, which together with a 5 place gear box penalty saw him start P20 in the grid. Yet with grit and determination and some smart strategy, ‘Chilli’ Sainz made his way through the field to claim P9 and two points at the chequered flag. Meanwhile his team mate Kvyat who started P15 could only manage to make up three places to finish outside the points

Sainz was P16 after the first lap of the Canadian GP. This became P11 on lap 17 after he cleverly used his first pit stop to undercut others around him. Probably set to be driver of the day, Carlos Sainz justified Alain Prost’s backing earlier during the weekend.

When asked by who he believed should replace Kimi, the quadruple French world champion was adamant: “I think Sainz. It is always a question of balance and who would work well with (Sebastian Vettel), but I’d choose Sainz.”

The irony of Carlos ‘chilli’ Sainz being passed over by RBR and ending up in Ferrari would be difficult for a certain Christian Horner to bear. Yet, the reality is once again the Red Bull young driver programme is delivering and so who do you the TJ13 jury believe will replace Kvyat and Sainz at Toro Rosso for 2017?

16 responses to “Red Bull to supply Ferrari replacement for Raikkonen

  1. Sorry. Am unable to give 2 names because I don’t/can’t follow races of lower categories. Whenever I hear about young guns it’s during F1 week-ends.

  2. Max didn’t ignore team orders. It’s really rather irritating that so many people are trying to find evidence for their pre-existing bias, rather than just look at what was said. What was said was: “Okay Max, do not hold Daniel up please.”

    The most logical (and literal) interpretation of this is that Max had to speed up. This is a perfectly normal demand in an age where drivers manage their tyres and thus don’t drive on the limit. There is no need for a driver to let their teammate past when they can just speed up.

    Never mind though. I know that the narrative about Max has already been established after Max refused to let Sainz past on 1 lap younger tyres. Since then, people have just been looking for evidence to fit their prejudice. And if you look at reality with a bias, then the evidence will come. Reality will just be framed and creatively interpreted to fit the narrative, rather than the narrative evolving around the facts.

    • Well said, all this stupid bickering is obviously written to entice the audience to react in an emotional fashion. But if you have watched F1 racing for 40 years then you can see with your own eyes that Max is a indeed a generational talent. Over 4 decades only Senna and Schumacher have ever shown me the combination of exceptional speed and racing skill. The writer I bet has not been a fan for that long. So I have some understanding for his ignorance.

      • I think that many people believe in a morality where success in sports has to be earned. Dues have to be paid, the long road followed and suffering has to precede success. However, prime talent usually doesn’t work like that. It is there, from the off and forces it own luck.

        The result is cognitive dissonance. The talent cannot be denied, or his results, but the ‘premature’ success results in the feeling that the achievements are undeserved. The logical solution to reconcile these conflicting feelings is to attack the character of the talent. After all, then it can be argued that the talent should take the long road for his own benefit, to ‘mature.’

        Hence the (early) accusations that Max risks the lives of others, despite other drivers causing more accidents. Then the accusation of hardheadedness, which is no less than many more experienced drivers have displayed (and IMO is necessary to be a true champion, who have to be ruthless). I wonder how the character attacks will evolve from here….

  3. “Given that Max Verstappen is now ignoring team orders from the Red Bull Racing pit wall as he refused to allow Daniel Ricciardo past during the 2016 Canadian GP”

    You are just repeating what British commentators said. At what time was Verstappen ordered to move over? He was simply told to get a move on ore let Ricciarco pass. So Verstappen sped up and Ricciardo couldn’t follow. As team orders are allowed, they could have been pretty clear: “switch positions”.

  4. Personally I’m not bothered about what bits of media support or dismiss Max.
    But as ever judge it seems Ferrari’s strategy and modus operandi is mistakenly offered as fact.

    The policy that Ferrari run a 1-2 team dates back as far as a certain Todt-Schumacher double act. It never existed before. Enzo despised team orders unless it was to secure the title.

    Look back at Williams with Jones n Reutemann, Mclaren with DC and Mika or Kimi n JPM. What about Lotus with Andrew time n Peterson. Do I need to go on?

  5. Putting extra pressure on Vettel does fit Marchionne’s management style. So I see Ferrari going for Riccciardo. That or they just keep both drivers for 2 more years, staying in line with their policy of keeping drivers past their date (Kimi like massa before).

  6. The only thing about all this that I find interesting is the fact that it’s taken so incredibly long for it to dawn on both the public and the “insiders” that Raikkonen is probably the most consistently over-rated driver in the history of F1.

  7. Red Bull have inserted a hefty release clause on Ricciardo’s contract. If Ferrari intend to follow a Number 1/2 driver policy for 2017 and beyond, then Valtteri Bottas has to be the best option as he is less likely than Grosjean and Ricciardo to threaten Vettel. Thing is though Ferrari may prefer to keep Raikkonen due to his solid but unspectacular consigning him to Vettel’s shadow. Bottas may spring an awkward surprise, he might beat Vettel more often anticipated and leave VEttel’s relationship with the Scuderia increasingly strained. Therefore Kimi must remain for 2017 to ensure maximum stability.

  8. Raikkonen is staying at Ferrari in 2017. Torro Rosso will retain Kvyat and Sianz.
    Red Bull Racing dont have 2 good juniors ready this time. Ghasly may come but very unlikely.
    The 2017 rule changes will mean teams want stability. Sianz to Ferrari in 2018 is possible but I believe Renault is the best place for him.

  9. Max didnt refuse to team orders. When said not to hold up Ricciardo he started to speed up and drive a gap of at least 3 secs. Max was driver of the day. So not probably Sainz. Sainz is self proclaimed chilli but is more butter. Slides everywhere and eats his rubber. Ferrari is better of with Bottas. A fin for a fin.

  10. It is nonsense that Kimi should stay at Ferrari, I guess no body watched the part where Nico passed him from way behind under braking… like, no defense at all, no spacial awareness, nothing….. not even a rookie could be caught napping like that… Sorry Kimi, but you should retire

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