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Kick Sauber offer update on who could partner new signing Hulkenberg for 2025

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Alessandro Alunni Bravi has insisted that Kick Sauber “have the time” at their disposal to ponder “the very best options” for the second half of their 2025 line-up, after moving early to secure Nico Hulkenberg’s services.

Hulkenberg will make the move from Haas to Hinwil next year, ahead of German automotive giants Audi taking over Kick Sauber’s entry for the arrival of new power unit and aerodynamic regulations in 2026.

EXCLUSIVE: ‘There can only be one goal’ – Andreas Seidl on Audi’s ‘all-in’ targets and their driver market strategy

It means the current partnership of Valtteri Bottas and Zhou Guanyu, which has been in place since 2022, will be disbanded at the end of the campaign, with both drivers yet to confirm where they will be racing.

IMOLA, ITALY - MAY 18: Alessandro Alunni Bravi, Team Representative of Stake F1 Team Kick Sauber

Alunni Bravi is the Team Representative at Kick Sauber

Given Audi’s impending arrival, a host of drivers have been linked with the second seat, including outgoing Ferrari driver Carlos Sainz and Esteban Ocon, whose exit from Alpine was confirmed earlier this week.

Asked at the recent Monaco Grand Prix what Kick Sauber’s mindset is when it comes to choosing Hulkenberg’s team mate, and whether he wants a deal to be done quickly, Team Representative Alunni Bravi said: “I think there is not a deadline.

READ MORE: Hulkenberg ‘very excited’ by Audi project as he sees opportunity for manufacturer to be competitive ‘straight away’

“We have anticipated a bit the market by signing Nico Hulkenberg, who is a really strong addition to our team, and fits properly into the long-term project of Audi in F1. Now we have the time to assess the very best options available.”

Alunni Bravi added that Kick Sauber’s decision also depends on what other teams choose to do, with McLaren and Ferrari the only outfits to formally confirm their full 2025 line-ups.

MONTE-CARLO, MONACO - MAY 25: Third placed qualifier Carlos Sainz of Spain and Ferrari attends the

Sainz has yet to confirm his future Formula 1 plans

“Of course, there is a market that we need to take into consideration,” he said. “It’s depending not just [on] ourselves, it’s depending [on] how other teams will take their decisions and will, I would say, have an impact on other teams’ decisions.

“We are there, we are playing a role in this market, and of course we want to secure the very best pair of drivers for the future. This, I think, needs to take the proper time, without accelerating the process, but we want to be positioned well in the future.”

READ MORE: Kick Sauber hoping Monaco was ‘an outlier’ as they leave race as the only team yet to score in 2024

While those off-track considerations continue, Kick Sauber are looking for a turnaround in fortunes on the track, having failed to score a point over the opening eight rounds of the 2024 season – leaving them at the foot of the constructors’ standings.

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