Formula 1 Betting: 2021 Season Rumors & News
There are still three months left before the 2021 Formula One season kicks-off with the Australian Grand Prix on March 21 and while it’s anyone’s guess what the next season will bring, the confirmed team signings make it very difficult not to be excited about the 71st running of the Formula One World Driver’s Championship. Here we take a look at which driver has joined what team and who will make his debut in F1 next season so you get ready to make your bets against their Formula 1 odds.
Formula One 2021 season Rumors and Confirmed Signings
Sergio Perez signs for Red Bull
As announced on Friday, December 18, Sergio Perez has landed the second seat at Red Bull next to Max Verstappen for 2021 season. The 30-year-old Mexican F1 driver will replace Alex Albon, who is said to be retained by the team as a test and reserve driver.
“The chance to race for a championship-contending team is something I have been hoping for since I joined F1 and it will be a proud moment to step onto the grid in Red Bull colours,” said Perez.
Going against Red Bull’s tradition, Perez became the first driver since 2007 to join the team from outside of their young driver programme. He is now in an excellent position to build on his success from the 2020 season when he won his maiden Grand Prix after 190 attempts at Sakhir GP.
Mick Schumacher joins Haas
The long-awaited announcement has finally surfaced earlier this month when it was revealed that the son of seven-time world champion Michael Schumacher will step up from F2 next season and return the Schumacher’s name to F1 after a nine-year absence. The German driver has signed a multi-year deal with Haas, where he will join a 21-year-old Russian driver Nikita Mazepin to form a brand new rookie line-up.
Schumacher has already made his Haas debut at the season finale in Abu Dhabi and will have another go with the Ferrari-powered car in the pre-season testing at Barcelona in March ahead of his F1 debut.
Carlos Saintz replaces Sebastian Vettel at Ferrari
Carlos Sainz has been announced as Sebastian Vettel’s replacement at Ferrari after the four-time champion announced he would be leaving the team. The 28-year-old Spaniard is expected to be Ferrari’s number two driver, however, after an impressive season with McLaren, he likely won’t be intimidated by Charles Leclerc, who has extended his deal with the Prancing ponies until 2024.
Daniel Ricciardo teams up with McLaren
Daniel Ricciardo will team up with Lando Norris at McLaren for 2021 season as a replacement for Saintz. Although McLaren wasn’t looking to break up their young and promising duo, it seems like Saintz was unable to resist Ferrari’s offer.
This signing also comes off as a bit of a shock since Riccardo initially turned down McLaren’s offer two years ago in favour of Renault. However, it seems like McLaren’s engine improvements for the 2021 season were enough for the Australian driver to rethink his options.
“Signing Daniel is another step forward in our long-term plan and will bring an exciting new dimension to the team, alongside Lando,” said Zak Brown.
“I also want to pay tribute to Carlos for the excellent job he has been doing for McLaren in helping our performance recovery plan. He is a real team player and we wish him well for his future beyond McLaren.”
Fernando Alonso returns to Renault
The two-time F1 champion has returned to Renault, a team that had given him both of his Championship titles in 2005 and 2006. The Spaniard had long been linked with a Renault comeback and was already a hot topic of discussion even before Ricciardo’s departure was confirmed.
Sebastian Vettel replaces Perez at Racing Point
Sebastian Vettel’s departure from Ferrari was hardly a shock to the F1 fans and is now set to join Racing Post to spearhead their new Aston Martin era. Vettel will replace the long-serving Perez, who replaced Albon at Red Bull.
The fine details about Vettel’s contract with Racing Post were not disclosed, however, the team said the 33-year-old F1 veteran has joined for “2021 and beyond”. The Silverstone-based outfit now enters the 2021 season with the strongest lineup than ever and seem poised to further improve upon their fourth-place finish in this year’s Constructor’s Championship.
This signing also gives Vettel a chance to restart his career, find his form from the early 2010s and prove himself as one of F1’s elite drivers once more. It will also mark the first time in his career that Vettel will be driving in a Merc-powered car.
AlphaTauri sign Yuki Tsunoda
Yuki Tsunoda will replace Daniil Kvyat at AlphaTauri and make his first appearance in F1 after finishing third in the 2020 Formula 2 Championship. Tsunoda’s signing, however, is not shocking, since he was all but confirmed to become AlphaTauri’s second driver following his victory at the Sakhir feature race.
Tsunoda will become the first Japanese Formula 1 driver since Kamui Kobayashi who retired in 2014 and one of only 17 Japanese drivers who ever appeared in an F1 race.
Lewis Hamilton all but confirmed to remain at Mercedes
At the start of the season, it seemed like Lewis Hamilton’s contract extension was only a formality, but as the time went on, no moves towards the signings have been made. This made it seem like Hamilton might be exploring his options to continue his illustrious career elsewhere.
Regardless of numerous speculations, Hamilton has said he wants to remain with Mercedes, which will likely result in another lucrative contract for the Brit. Even though nothing is confirmed as of yet, Mercedes has already put Hamilton on their official entry lost for 2020, so it’s fair to say it’s only a matter of time before the announcement surfaces.
Valtteri Bottas, meanwhile, extended his contract with Mercedes for one more year, which shut down the rumours that suggested he could be replaced by George Russell, who had a stellar stand-in performance at the Sakhir Grand Prix.
“If George does well it’s an indication that one day he’s going to be in a good car and hopefully race for victories and World Championships – but that is far away. He knows that,” said Toto Wolf.
No changes for Alpha Romeo and Williams
Alpha Romeo (Kimi Räikkönen & Antonio Giovinazzi) and Williams (George Russell & Nicholas Latifi) are the only two teams to not make any changes ahead of the 2021 season. Although Giovinazzi’s future with Alpha Romeo was in doubt only a couple of months ago, it was later confirmed he will be staying with the team a little longer.
On the side of Williams, acting team principal, Simon Roberts sparked some speculations about a possible change for 2021 line-up after a somewhat confusing statement at the pre-Portuguese GP, where he suggested Russel’s and Latifi’s futures are not as secure as it may seem. He was, however, misunderstood, which Roberts later clarified.
“I probably caused a bit of confusion last week,” said Mr Roberts.
“Nothing’s changed and this is our driver line-up for this year and next year. We’re very happy with them and we look forward to continuing to work with them.”
The 2021 Formula One season is scheduled to kick off on Sunday, March 21, with the Australian Grand Prix at the Albert Park Circuit. The season will feature 23 races and conclude on Sunday, December 5 with Abu Dhabi Grand Prix. The venue of the fourth race (April 25) has yet to be announced, while the whole schedule remains subject to approval by the FIA’s World Motor Sport Council.