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Sainz offers update on F1 future as he says latest driver market developments ‘no surprise for me’

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MONTREAL, QUEBEC - JUNE 06: Carlos Sainz of Spain and Ferrari looks on in the Paddock during

Carlos Sainz has given his take on the latest driver market developments in Formula 1, as the wait continues to find out which team will secure the Spaniard’s services following his departure from Ferrari.

Sainz knew heading into the 2024 season that it would be his last with the Scuderia, who have chosen to replace him with seven-time world champion Lewis Hamilton for 2025 and beyond.

READ MORE: FIA unveils Formula 1 regulations for 2026 and beyond featuring more agile cars and active aerodynamics

After a competitive start to the campaign, which included podium finishes in the first three races he contested and victory on his return from appendicitis at the Australian Grand Prix, Sainz’s name was unsurprisingly linked to teams up and down the grid.

However, one of those potential paths was recently closed off when Red Bull confirmed that Sergio Perez will continue at the team for the next two seasons – with Max Verstappen also holding a contract through 2028.

Asked by F1 TV about the recent driver announcements, and if it is hard to focus on the future amid his and Ferrari’s strong form, Sainz replied: “Yeah, I think you’ve summarised it well.

'We're always there pushing each other' - Sainz on his battle with Ferrari teammate Leclerc

“I think it’s a situation where I’m trying to win in Monaco, trying to win in Canada, I have my home Grand Prix with Ferrari in a couple of weeks, so that’s where my head is at right now.”

Sainz then made clear that Perez’s contract extension was known to him well before the announcement landed ahead of this weekend’s Canadian Grand Prix at the Circuit Gilles Villeneuve.

READ MORE: Verstappen hails Perez contract renewal as ‘best thing’ for Red Bull and assesses team’s chances in Canada

“Obviously, the news that you’ve seen this week, I know from the inside a lot earlier than you guys [the media], because I’m in touch with all those teams, and it’s no surprise for me,” he commented.

“My head is busy with trying to perform in Ferrari, and trying to win, and once I have all the options in front of me, on top of the table, that my management team is sorting out, it will be time to take a decision.”

Of the seven teams yet to confirm their full driver line-ups for 2025, Sainz is now tipped to be choosing between Kick Sauber, who will be taken over by Audi prior to the 2026 rules reset, and Williams, who are in a rebuilding phase under team boss James Vowles.

MONTREAL, QUEBEC - JUNE 06: Carlos Sainz of Spain and Ferrari walks in the Paddock during previews

It remains to be seen where Sainz will be racing in 2025

Lawrence Barretto says…

Sainz had hoped Red Bull would recall him to the family, given his impressive form so far this year – but with that door now closed and Mercedes not interested either, the Spaniard faces a choice between Williams and Sauber/Audi.

Both projects offer Sainz stability, the role of team leader and the opportunity to lead the rebuild of either a former F1 giant or a newbie manufacturer – but both also mean a trip towards the back of the grid and a fight to get points rather than podiums or wins.

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Williams are pushing hard to convince Sainz to join Alex Albon in what would be one of the most impressive line-ups on the 2025 grid. If the Spaniard declines, Valtteri Bottas is believed to be the frontrunner to get that seat.

Like Williams, Sauber/Audi are pushing hard to secure Sainz on a multi-year deal, alongside Nico Hulkenberg, but if that doesn’t work out, the leading candidate is believed to be Esteban Ocon.

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