F1 journalist Lawrence Barretto believes once Carlos Sainz dusts himself off, the Spaniard will have his pick of F1 options for 2025.
While the announcement of Lewis Hamilton joining Ferrari for 2025 is understandably creating great excitement as the seven-time World Champion switches to Maranello after over a decade with Mercedes, the big loser in the musical chairs is Carlos Sainz.
The Spaniard, the only non-Red Bull driver to win a race in 2023, had made his desire clear to stay with the Scuderia, but lost out as Ferrari took the opportunity to sign the talismanic British driver alongside Charles Leclerc.
Carlos Sainz will have ‘tonnes of options’ for 2025
Appearing on the F1 Nation podcast to discuss Hamilton’s seismic move, F1 journalist Lawrence Barretto said that, given Sainz’s form isn’t in question, the current Ferrari driver will have no shortage of options on the driver market for next season.
“I actually think he’s not in too bad a spot at the minute, I think he probably looked at the fact that he’s lost his seat to the greatest driver of a generation as probably some sort of… it’s probably the best thing that could have happened to him,” he said.
“Because it just shows that, if that was going to happen, at least it was Lewis and not like an Albon or someone else who he would have felt pretty disappointed by.
“He’s got tonnes of options.”
Both Mercedes and Red Bull still have unconfirmed race seats for 2025 – although Barretto believes it’s Mercedes at which he has the better chance in what would therefore become a straight swap with Hamilton.
“I think he knows Toto Wolff very well,” he said.
“I know that, at Mercedes, they want consistency and they want someone who’s going to not rock the boat. They want someone who’s going to get on well with George Russell and Carlos Sainz fits that bill.”
If Mercedes fails to play out for Sainz, Barretto said he knows that Sainz has concrete options at several other teams – all of whom have unconfirmed seats for next year.
“I know, for a fact, that he could have an option at Aston Martin,” he said.
“He can have an option at Sauber but that will become Audi in 2026, and he can have an option at Williams.
“I know that they don’t all scream Ferrari at you but they are all teams in the potential ascendancy at different rates over the next few years. So I actually think he’s in a very good spot.
“Once he comes to terms with the fact that his time at Ferrari is over, I don’t think he’s going to be too downbeat. He’s got the potential, if he goes to Mercedes, of a car that could be fighting for race wins almost immediately.
“If he goes to Aston Martin, he’s got a team that’s already fighting for podiums, and it’s going the right way.
“If he goes and hooks up with his old boss Andreas Seidl at Sauber, he’s got a manager who he knows can turn things around.
“And, if he goes to Williams, look what James Vowles has done in the course of a year and the money that they’re putting into that team. It could be a lot worse for him.”