KEY POINTS

  • Ferrari looking for second driver for 2021
  • Sebastian Vettel contract to end after 2020
  • Lewis Hamilton, Kimi Raikkonen and Daniel Ricciardo are potential candidates

Charles LeClerc has been confirmed up to and including the 2024 Formula 1 season, but Ferrari has also revealed they are looking into the other driver seat from the 2021 season.

Four drivers are under contract beyond the end of the 2020 Formula season, and one of them is LeClerc.

He signed on to the team in 2018 September to replace Kimi Raikkonen to become Sebastian Vettel’s teammate. 

Vettel is a senior team driver, but his contract is up to the end of the 2020 season, meaning Ferrari will have to find a complement for LeClerc to match up to Red Bull’s Max Verstappen and Alex Albon.

 Speaking on stage at Autosport International 2020 on Sunday, LeClerc claimed to have Vettel alongside him was still a good thing because of the way the driver had opened his eyes concerning what he needed to do. 

LeClerc stated that he learned a lot when he was working with Vettel.

Obviously, they had their moments on the track in which they learned together, but hopefully, it is not going to happen again.

LeClerc even admitted that in the way that Vettel was working with the team, he still has a lot to learn.

Though Ferrari was not able to put together a title challenge the previous year, LeClerc claims the short term ambitions remain quite high ahead of the campaign, which he says is going to be important towards laying the foundations for 2021 going forward.

The mystery for Ferrari lies beyond 2020. Vettel signed a three-year extension in 2017, meaning the conclusion of that contract will be after this year’s season.

His seat at Ferrari has been one of the most discussed ones for the 2021 season, with several drivers being linked to it.

Lewis Hamilton is the most famous driver who has been linked to Ferrari, considering his contract with Silver Arrows expires at the end of this upcoming season.

Mercedes are also debating with the idea of returning as a constructor for 2021, so it could be a necessity for Hamilton to make a move to Ferrari to have the best chance at seven championships like Schumacher.

The other alternatives would be Daniel Ricciardo or Kimi Raikkonen. It would be a chance for Raikkonen to stave off retirement and have a final stint at Ferrari.

Ricciardo, who was once one of the potential options for Ferrari, opted to go to Renault after 2018, instead of so that may well be his chance to try for the championship.

racing-3415413_640 (3) Ferrari Photo: Pixabay