It has been announced that Nicholas Latifi will not compete for Williams in Formula One in 2023. Who will work beside Alexander Albon if he is not there?
While Williams chose to re-sign Alexander Albon to a long-term agreement for the 2023 Formula 1 season and beyond, the team made the long-anticipated decision to cut connections with Nicholas Latifi after the 2022 season. Albon’s new deal is for 2023 and beyond, while Latifi’s deal is for 2022 and beyond. Nicholas Latifi had been a member of the squad ever since the year 2020.
This piece of news provided further evidence that Williams will be searching for a new driver for the 2019 season. The seat held by Nicholas Latifi is one of five seats in 2023 that do not yet have confirmed drivers; nevertheless, only two of those five seats are certain to witness a change in drivers. There is no doubt that one of those two seats belongs to Latifi.
Who will take over for the Canadian who is only 27 years old the next year? Here are five different scenarios to consider.
Possible candidates to take over for Nicholas Latifi: First and foremost, Logan Sargeant
It is obvious that Latifi’s seat is the least competitive of those seats, and the fact that there are numerous other open seats that are still available could prompt Williams to want to make a decision as quickly as possible. If they wait to make an offer, there is a possibility that another company would sign an important player before they do, which would be a significant loss for them.
However, according to recent reports, the Grove-based team is holding off on making a decision in order to see if Williams Driver Academy and Formula 2 driver Logan Sargeant can earn the required number of points to qualify for an FIA Super License. This would imply that they are considering him as their top choice to take Latifi’s place.
As of right now, Sargeant is in third place in the standings for Formula 2, and he presently has a chance to become the first American driver to compete in Formula 1 since 2015. In the earlier part of this summer, he triumphed in the main events at both Silverstone and the Red Bull Ring.
If they are unable to secure Sargeant, it would appear that they are willing to accept whoever is still available. And it’s possible that they still have quite a few choices.
Possible Nicholas Latifi replacements: No. 2 – Nyck de Vries
Nyck de Vries, who stood in for Alexander Albon in Monza when Albon was recovering from appendicitis, is one of the candidates that could be considered for the position currently occupied by Nicholas Latifi in the next season. The team was awarded two points as a result of his remarkable ninth-place finish, which also earned him the honor of being named Driver of the Day.
earned a total of only four points throughout the first 15 races of the season, all of which came through Albon.
The Dutchman, who is now 27 years old, has been considered for a long time to be one of the most deserving drivers who is not currently competing in Formula 1. He has pretty much done everything on the track that he is capable of doing to justify a spot on one of the 10 teams that compete in the sport. The Mercedes reserve driver was victorious in both the 2019 Formula 2 championship and the 2020-2021 Formula E championship.
It is interesting to note that when it was claimed that Alpine reserve driver Oscar Piastri was going to join Williams on loan as Latifi’s successor, de Vries was considered as the big loser. Piastri was rumored to be replacing Nicholas Latifi. Because Piastri decided to sign with McLaren instead, that should clear the way for de Vries to take one of the available spots, right?
It is possible, but it is also possible, and it may be even more realistic, that he gets a seat somewhere else. Following his strong debut, it is being stated that De Vries is now in the running to sign with a number of different organizations, especially Alpine and AlphaTauri. Both of those destinations are certainly a bit more enticing than Williams.
Possible Nicholas Latifi replacements: No. 3 – Daniel Ricciardo
In connection with Oscar Piastri, Daniel Ricciardo is the driver who is in line to take Oscar Piastri’s seat at McLaren. Daniel Ricciardo was the Alpine reserve driver. Piastri signed with the Woking-based team even before Ricciardo was informed that he would be released by the team a year before his contract was initially due to expire. In point of fact, Piastri signed with the Woking-based team even before Ricciardo was informed that he would be released by the team.
Ricciardo has been linked to all of the open Formula 1 seats for the following season in some way, most notably at Alpine, which he drove for as Renault in 2019 and 2020. With Fernando Alonso leaving to replace Sebastian Vettel at Aston Martin, as well as at Haas, with Mick Schumacher having an uncertain future, Ricciardo has been linked to both of those teams as well.
Ricciardo has stated that he is willing to take a year off from Formula One in 2023 if he believes that it will enable him to take “two steps forward” in 2024, despite the fact that there is no way to guarantee such a result this far in advance.
It remains to be seen whether or not he would take a seat at Williams merely for the sake of being in Formula 1, which is practically what it would amount to given the team’s lack of competitive machinery. If he did, however, it would be for the sake of remaining in the sport. If he believes that doing so could result in something more favorable in 2024, then perhaps it is a little more realistic; having said that, there is still no way to guarantee that such a result would occur.
At best, he is a fallback option for the squad in the event that Logan Sargeant does not receive the Super License points he needs and Nyck de Vries signs with another team.
Possible candidates to take the place of Nicholas Latifi: No. 4 – Mick Schumacher
Regarding Mick Schumacher, it is becoming more and more likely that he will not be returning to his Haas seat the following season, even if it is not Daniel Ricciardo who replaces him together with Kevin Magnussen. This is the case despite the fact that Kevin Magnussen will be driving alongside Daniel Ricciardo. Nico Hulkenberg and Antonio Giovinazzi have also emerged as significant possibilities in this race.
The fact that Schumacher’s Ferrari’s ties are in doubt beyond the conclusion of this year probably doesn’t bode all that well for him, but Haas has stated that they won’t necessarily wait for Ferrari to choose who gets their second seat in 2022.
Having said that, it is entirely feasible that he will embrace the change, as it may enable him to align himself with another development program. With that being stated, it is completely possible that he will welcome the change.
Due to the fact that Red Bull is no longer an option, he will not be joining AlphaTauri, but he may find that associating himself with Mercedes is the best course of action for him at this juncture in his career. If he raced against Alexander Albon, it would provide him the opportunity to see how he stacks up against a driver who has demonstrated the ability to get respectable results while driving a vehicle that is not up to its full potential.
George Russell, a junior driver for Mercedes, was recently recruited to take over for Valtteri Bottas at the Silver Arrows. Prior to this, Russell had spent the previous three years competing for Williams. Given that Lewis Hamilton, who is 37 years old, probably won’t be competing for too many more years, could something comparable happen with Michael Schumacher?
Possible successors for Nicholas Latifi include: No. 5 – Jack Aitken
Jack Aitken, like Nyck de Vries, made one start in Formula One with Williams after being called upon as a late replacement. However, Jack Aitken’s start occurred under significantly different circumstances than Nyck de Vries’. The four-time Formula 2 race winner took over for the driver who was supposed to replace the driver who actually did not show up for the race.
Lewis Hamilton tested positive for COVID-19 prior to the 2020 Sakhir Grand Prix, which was held at the Bahrain International Circuit. As a result, Mercedes recruited George Russell, who was then competing for Williams, to take Hamilton’s spot at the Mercedes team.
Although Aitken’s finish of 16th place was nothing to write home about and teammate Nicholas Latifi was forced to retire with an oil leak, it was a good debut weekend for the British-South Korean driver. A legitimate teammate comparison like the one that de Vries had against Nicholas Latifi in Monza this year was prevented. He qualified 18th overall, just one slot behind Nicholas Latifi, and he completed the race on the same lap as the leaders.
The Williams team has retained the services of the 26-year-old driver in the capacity of reserve driver. Aitken would not be a terrible consolation prize for the squad if they choose to promote from within in the event that neither Logan Sargeant nor Nyck de Vries are available for the position they are applying for.
Who will ultimately take over for Nicholas Latifi as Williams’ driver for the 2023 Formula One season? Is it going to be one of these five drivers, or are they going to surprise us by choosing somebody else?
For more information regarding OKBET Racing, click here