Ferrari sign Carlos Sainz to replace Sebastian Vettel and Daniel Ricciardo heads to McLaren

  • Alex Batt
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Ferrari have moved quickly to announce Sebastian Vettel's replacement for next season after the German announced he wouldn't be signing a contract extension.

The four-time world champion has just a few months left on his current deal at Ferrari, and it was announced earlier this week that he wouldn't be extending his stay.

Vettel, who enjoyed most of his success in the sport at Red Bull, will now look for a new drive for next season, but it has already been announced who is replacing him at the Italian giants.

Ferrari announced this morning that it would be Carlos Sainz taking Vettel's seat for the 2021 and 2022 season, partnering up with youngster Charles Leclerc.

On their official website, Mattia Binotto released the following statement: "I’m pleased to announce that Carlos will join Scuderia Ferrari as from the 2021 championship. With five seasons already behind him, Carlos has proved to be very talented and has shown that he has the technical ability and the right attributes to make him an ideal fit with our family.

“We’ve embarked on a new cycle with the aim of getting back to the top in Formula 1. It will be a long journey, not without its difficulties, especially given the current financial and regulatory situation, which is undergoing a sudden change and will require this challenge to be tackled in a different way to the recent past.

"We believe that a driver pairing with the talent and personality of Charles and Carlos, the youngest in the past 50 years of the Scuderia, will be the best possible combination to help us reach the goals we have set ourselves."

Speaking on the move himself, Sainz said: "I am very happy that I will be driving for Scuderia Ferrari in 2021 and I'm excited about my future with the team.

"I still have an important year ahead with McLaren Racing and I’m really looking forward to going racing again with them this season."

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Sainz isn't the only driver who has already moved ahead of next season, however, as it's also been announced that Daniel Ricciardo will be leaving Renault and taking the free seat at McLaren.

The Aussie's time at Renault has been short lived, and will be deemed forgettable after a poor 2019 season.

Speaking about Ricciardo, McLaren official Zak Brown said: "Signing Daniel is another step forward in our long-term plan and will bring an exciting new dimension.

"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."

The driver roundabout is certainly underway!

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Although all the talk is currently about next season, decisions still need to be made in regards to this season, with the coronavirus pandemic still at large and forcing every Grand Prix so far to be cancelled.

It looks like F1 officials want to start the season over the summer, but as of yet, nothing is concrete.

One thing is concrete, however, and that is Ferrari's line-up for the next two seasons.

Does this mean Lewis Hamilton will miss out on driving for Ferrari?

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